Walked thru the north end on Sat. and tried Maria's cannoli. I'm no expert but I really liked the fresh shell, no hint of sitting around forever. Ricotta tasted good too. Picked up a choc. chip scone at Sel de la Terre which had an unadvertised orange flavor. Smaller and more expensive than many ($2) but also seemed more authentic/English in a lighter flakier way. Got ice cream in Gloucester on Rt. 127 across from the big restaurants on the water, can't remember the name. They serve Bliss ice cream from Attleboro which seems far away from Glouc. with the good north shore places. Lots of good flavors, another gigantic small for $2.50. Sometimes I just want a normal small cone tho. Got peach and grapenut which were fine but not as good as White Farm or Richardson's. The peach flavor wasn't strong enough, the grapenut had a minty taste to it. There was also a small place by the Portugese rstaurant that sells Richardson's, plus the shooting range/mini golf place on Rt. 1 by Topsfield sells it.
Tried a completely different place for clams, Mimi's on 133 where 1A breaks off in Ipswich. Good points: cheap, gigantic portions, nice picnic bench area outside and fast service. Bad point: chewy clams. For $8.50 I got a clam roll with rings instead of fries which they happily substituted (lots of places give you no side with the rolls). The bun was beautifully grilled (I think that adds to the experience), tons of nicely fried if slightly chewy clams, so-so tartar sauce and amazing onion rings. I had 19 left and I wasn't skimping on them as I ate the meal. Three people probably could have shared this but I stuffed it all down myself. Lots of subs and greek food there too.