The Cookie Bar
Buzzkill – Chocolate Chip Cookies with Dark, Semi-Sweet, and Milk Chocolate Chips
PB Kitchen Sink – Chocolate Chip Cookie Base, Peanut Butter Cup Middle, Topped with Chocolate Brownie
Whiskey-Doodle – Fireball Whiskey Snicker Doodle topped with Whiskey Buttercream
Drunk Pumpkin Punch – Pumpkin Walnut Cookies, Rum Cream Cheese Filling, Rolled in Chopped Walnuts
Black Irish – Guinness Stout Infused Dark Chocolate Brownie finished with Irish Cream Topping
Not a drinker save for the occasional cocktail or rare glass of wine with dinner yet thoroughly intrigued by the crowd-funded mother/daughter project entitled “The Cookie Bar” it was the smiling face of owner Wendy Baumgartner that welcomed me to the small Cannery West kiosk, but it was her infectious passion for the project that truly won me over. Opened early this year after a trekking the catering and festival scenes the concept of The Cookie Bar admittedly seems a bit kitsch up front but with boozed-up riffs on classic American confections befitting the moniker of Sin City lining the shelves and comparatively low prices by 702 standards it can only be said that “bar food” jokes aside these ladies can really bake. Featuring intoxicating flavors both alcohol-infused and virgin it was with a duo of tender triple-chocolate ‘Buzzkill’ cookies that I began and with soft centers amidst crisp edges the classics tasted oven fresh, a characteristic no less notable in the red-hot cinnamon snickerdoodle, both individually bagged options a mere $3 and just as delicious as upcharged versions found on-strip. Moving next to a similarly priced beer-brownie punched up with a tablespoon each of Guinness and Bailey’s before transitioning to the actual ‘Punch’ of the densely spiced and cakelike Drunk Pumpkin it was last that I turned to a veritable ‘best of both worlds’ in The Kitchen Sink, a 6oz block of flavor with textures harkening fudge while flavors hollered Reese’s – an Oreo version also available and beckoning me back along with the Vodka kissed Krispies and signature Booze Munch.
FOUR STARS: As homegrown (or perhaps homebrewed) as it gets and truly living the new Artisan-American Dream popularized by cities like Portland and Brooklyn the Baumgartner’s Cookie Bar should be on any the short list for anyone with a sweet-tooth and all the more so for those looking to “go-local.”
RECOMMENDED: Everything I ordered was excellent, but if forced to choose I’d order the Pumpkin Punch and Kitchen Sink over the rest, the former every bit as good as the Carrot Cake cookie at Bouchon and the later pure bliss – particularly warmed and gooey.
AVOID: The Buzzkill was a bit pedestrian compared to the rest, but even then it was still a really good Chocolate Chip Cookie.
TIP: Yelp! Check-Ins score a free bag of Buzzkills, but if you ask nicely Wendy will give you any $3 cookie on the house for stopping by and telling your friends.
WHAT THE STARS MEAN: 5 World Class, 4 Excellent, 3 Good, 2 Fair, 1 Poor