Warm, Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookie Bliss: The Curious Palate
This may be totally obnoxious, but I'm reposting with a new and more descriptive title to ensure Hounds know about these incredible cookies at the Curious Palate, which may or may not be struggling to survive.
For pics: http://reservationforthree.blogspot.c...
As many of you probably recall David Leite of the fabulous site Leite's Culinaria wrote a NY Times article last July about the search for the elusive perfect chocolate chip cookie. The article concluded with a cookie recipe that has been extensively blogged about, tested, modified, and photographed (picture above from the article!). Do a search for "NY Times chocolate chip cookie" for some serious food porn.
Baking these legendary cookies has been on my to-do list for a while now but it's more involved than your standard cookie recipe and only makes six giant cookies per batch so I hadn't yet made them.
Flash-forward to this past Sunday. We were going to my step-mom's for brunch on the Westside and we needed to get her a belated birthday gift so I thought of the Curious Palate which I've wanted to try. Gourmet foodstuffs, farmer's market-driven menu, etc.
As soon as I walked in I was drawn, of course, to the three large glass jars on the counter, each piled high with cookies and bars. They had samples of each on little plates so, even though it was 10am, I had to at least taste them. It was then that I noticed the chocolate chip cookies were glistening. The helpful and awfully sweet woman behind the counter confirmed that the cookies had just come out of the oven.
Well folks, I didn't ask, and I hope I'm not spoiling any sort of secret, but I'm pretty sure that these absolutely incredible cookies are the famous NY Times cookies or very similar adaptations. OK, how to describe them? Salty, buttery, soft with just a hint of crispness, these thin and large babies were warm and the chocolate was still gooey. The cookies were so good that my husband and I agreed the chocolate chips were almost superfluous. Really, the elusive perfect chocolate chip cookie. I took two to go and we almost inhaled both by the time we got to brunch.
Mar Vistans are so lucky to have such a yummy spot in their hood. And I am thankful that it's far enough away to only be an occasional destination, though I already feel those cookies calling me back! A trip to Mar Vista is certainly easier and faster than making these cookies from scratch.
The Curious Palate
12034 Venice Blvd
The greatest chocolate-chip cookies I've ever had were made by my daughter, Emily, when she was six years old. It was her first attempt at solo baking, and she wasn't completely convinced of the need to measure carefully according to a recipe. But somehow she produced a fabulously crisp and soft and lusciously chewable cookie. Unfortunately for the world, she could never remember the exact proportions or process she invented.
The second-best are the chocolate-chip cookies I get with dessert whenever I go to a Michael Mina restaurant -- Stonehill Tavern, for example. They come automatically with the artful root-beer float, but you may have to beg in an undignified way if you order something else. Mina's cookies -- served warm -- are fragrant and delicious, especially if you dunk them in a cup of his fine espresso.
The cookies you describe sound fantastic, and I can't wait to try them. Obviously, nothing will ever exceed Emily's, but the ones at the Curious Palate might help maintain the memory.
St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort, Dana Point, CA 92629
OK, that was seriously the sweetest thing I've ever read. How could any cookie ever compare with those?
Thanks though for the Michael Mina heads up, sound wonderful, especially with a root beer float!
And yes, do try the cookies at Curious Palate some time. Hopefully, they'll bring back the memories of Emily's in some distant sense.