Homestead brand ice cream, an excellent product made in Achibold, Ohio, is the Ice Cream Parlor’s stock in trade, but what makes this small corner sweet shop extra-special are its waffle cones. You smell fresh cones the moment you walk in the door, and if you look to the back of the store at the end of the freezer cases where the ice cream is kept, you will see the source of the enticing aroma: two waffle irons, steaming away, on which waffle cones are baked throughout the day. When the waffle is ready, the gent who makes them – an octogenarian who is a waffle-iron master – peels it off the grill while still hot and winds it around a conical wooden device so that it hardens in the proper form. All of this takes about three seconds from the time the waffle iron is opened, and it is a beautiful sight.
If you’re nice, and if gramps is in a good mood, you can ask for a cone fresh from the iron, still a bit warm and not quite hardened to perfect crispness. Ice cream set into this cone tends to melt a little quicker, but the combination of cool, melting ice cream and utterly fresh cone is well worth the mess.
A couple of dozen ice cream flavors are available. We were told that butter pecan is the most popular flavor, but the runner-up -- and our recommendation for any first-time visitor -- is one called moose tracks: vanilla ice cream swirled with chocolate and dotted with small peanut butter cups.
"I enjoyed this Moose Tracks ice cream (note the large peanut butter cups) in a homemade waffle cone while watching West Liberty's Labor Day parade go by. You have to love small town living! "
"Grampa uses a wooden form to shape the soft waffle into a cone. When he is making cones, the whole store is filled with their sweet, toasty perfume."
"Thin waffles are peeled off these grill and made into cones while still soft and warm."
"For nearly half a century, this corner store has been a West Liberty culinary landmark."