In the late 1800’s Liberty consisted of Main Street or Liberty Street as it was known, with a mix of residential, commercial and religious buildings. Main Street commercial properties were crowded with a variety of warehouses, barns, carriage houses, sheds, a blacksmith shop and feed mill. The Liberty Steam laundry and the Liberty Gazette fronted on School Street, as did a two-story wheelwright shop that bridged the creek. School Street, so named for the elementary school located there still retains several older buildings built in the early 1900’s.
10 School Street is one such property that was purchased by Richard and Yna Manzi in 2016. They opened their doors as Manzi’s Cafe shortly thereafter. Richard, a carpenter by trade was looking for inside work and Yna wanted to grow her “helado” business of selling tropical ices. Manzi’s provides a quaint, small, intimate and relaxing dining space just a block off Main Street. Their menu features hot dogs, burgers, homemade fries, rice & beans, floats, ice cream and homemade tiramisu which you can even order to take home. Large with 12 servings is $30 and the small 4 serving size is $12.
The Cafe building was built in 1920 as a two-story wood frame structure that has housed many businesses over the years. It has 2 original street level display windows with a central entrance to the second floor. A unique “diamond” window centered between three window bays adds detail to the exterior. Stepping inside the Cafe you notice the vintage tin ceiling and wood floor that brings back a nostalgia of years gone by.
Richard is a 42 year cancer survivor and does what he can to raise money for the American Cancer Society as he says they were helpful to him when he needed it. He walks in the Relay for Life every year and recently sponsored his Second Annual Chili Cook-Off raising funds for the Sullivan County chapter of the American Cancer Society.
Rich and Yna also have a party room available should you need a space to host a party, event or family gathering. The Cafe is a welcome addition to the Village of Liberty. When you are driving through town, make a turn down School Street to Manzi’s Cafe for lunch and an ice cream sundae or tiramisu for dessert. Relax and plan to stay a while….because you most likely will !
Check them out at http://manziscafeandicecream.com/