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May 28, 2007 03:00 PM

confronting the cookie

I love love love a good cookie--which, to my taste, is big, fresh, soft and gooey (the exception being shortbread), be it w/ or w/o nuts, chips, sprinkles etc.
But I almost never buy them b/c they're almost always a depressing waste of precious guilty-pleasure calories. Only cake by the slice surpasses a cookie in its ratio of good looks:blah flavor. Even Maria's only does so-so soft cookies (though the Italian varieties are pretty good).

Which bakeries in town have truly mastered the lowly cookie?


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  1. I think Lakota Bakery has the best cookies around. They are in Arlington Heights (near Penzeys and across from Something Savory). I'm partial to the macaroons (lemon, chocolate covered almond or coconut), florentines and their chocolate dipped shortbread. The lemon macaroons were my favorite of the three but my last purchase had an excess of icing. The chocolate almond is a close second. The coconut has a hunk of dark chocolate in the middle which is always a nice contrast.

    I usually buy my fix at Formaggio in Cambridge. However, sometimes, they can get a wee bit stale.

    I also love the Salt Oats cookies (at the bread counter at FK or by the boxed chocolate section. I *love* the chocolate salty oats cookie but they are $2.50 a pop. Big cookie but pricey.

    4 Replies
    1. re: beetlebug

      Ignore my post. I just saw the word "cookie" and I immediately thought of Lakota. They don't fit your parameters of big, fresh, soft and gooey. But they are tasty.

      Sorry about that.

      1. re: beetlebug

        We have the same palate for cookies...I LOVE Lakota (I like the chocolate sandwich cookies and the apricot linzer) and Salty Oats!!! I've tried, unsuccessfully, to replicate them myself!

        1. re: beetlebug

          I *love* the lemon macaroons at Lakota. They are sensational. I could polish off 1/2 dozen with a tall glass of milk, easy. My hubby feels the same way about their rumballs.

          1. re: beetlebug

            I met the Salty Oats cookies woman at the Hingham Whole Foods last saturday...She's really nice, and skinny, damn her! The cookies are absolutely delicious, and surprisingly, sigar is pretty low on the ingredient list. They were selling bags of six, a mix of the plain and the chocolate, for $9.95. Don't know if they carry them at other Whole Foods yet, but we can ask; she really deserves the boost! The company is called kayak cookies, or cookie, not sure which.

          2. Clear Flour does a few really good big cookies - I think the one most to your taste would probably be the oatmeal raisin. They also do a chocolate chunk, sometimes with and sometimes without nuts (I prefer mine with), and occasionally an all-chocolate cookie, which I haven't actually tried.

            They also do a variety of small bagged cookies, but those would definitely not fit your criteria as they are all of the crispy/crunchy or shortbread variety. I think it's probably hard to do a really gooey big cookie in a commercial setting, rather than homemade, because they don't keep at all well, but are only good when very fresh.

            1. Big, soft and gooey is hard to find in a cookie - they don't really seem to keep that way. Someone around here makes big, soft, gooey vegan cookies. I know I've seen them in cellophane at Pemberton's. Probably not at all what you're looking for, but the only soft ones that come to mind.

              3 Replies
              1. re: gini

                The vegan ones you are talking about are Boston Cookies-- cellophane wrapped and also available at Whole Foods, among other high end markets.

                Hi Rise cookies are pretty darn good-- fresh, crisp around the edges but softer & chewier toward the middle. The pricing is quirky-- some are a dollar, some are 2.25-- dependent on ingredient cost, I'd imagine.

                Agree with beetlebug-- Formaggio has a variety of sources, but staleness happens there more than it should.

                1. re: newhound

                  Ditto the above mentioned raves regarding Lakota. Their cakes are wonderful too. Being a baker, I tend to buy the cookies I don't make so I never buy their chocolate chip/oatmeal/peanut butter.

                  Russo's in Watertown makes a fabulous, soft, chewy Kitchen Sink cookie and at $1.25 it's a steal. They also have peanut butter, ginger/molassas and a few others which are probably worth a try. Sweet Tooth in South Boston makes super large, chewy old fashion cookies at very reasonable prices too. Happy hunting!

                  1. re: tweetie

                    I second Russo's! That was my first thought when I read the original post. I'm absolutely addicted to their ginger/molasses cookies, and it was dangerous when my fiance worked just down the street. Now, we get them less often, but they're still at the top of my list! I recently tried the Kitchen Sink cookies, and they're absolutely fantastic. Get some milk to go with them, though!

              2. Rosie's Bakery's cookie is definitely what you are looking for. Nice crisp edge with a soft gooey center. I know there is one in Chestnut Hill, but they also have a couple of other locations.

                3 Replies
                1. re: mabelm4050

                  I second Rosie's. I usually get the oatmeal rasin and it is fresh, soft and chewy-gooey. This one does not fit the descriiption but another favorite of mine from Rosie's is their biscotti -- cranberry pistachio, it's wonderful!

                  1. re: SEH

                    Ditto the peanut butter chocolate chunk and the snickerdoodles. Which is strange, i always think of snickerdoodles as kind of flavorless, but theirs are chewy and dense. They're selling their cookie-dough, refrigerated at a few Whole Foods in the area, and the cookies it makes are amazing.

                    Speaking of which, WF has a jumble cookie that has dark chocolate, raisins, nuts and a bunch of stuff. Since their dough all comes from a commissary, and gets baked in store, you have to check carefully, but they can be divine. Worth every calorie.

                    1. re: galleygirl

                      Flour also sells their dough, which you can divvy up and freeze in cookie-sized portions and bake at will. Mmmm....warm cookies.

                2. I found myself in Arlington one afternoon so I stopped at Lakota. Thank god I don't live near there. I brought home a dozen, GONE in no time. The best around.