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Saturday, December 6, 2014

Vermont's Seven Best Cookies

Posted By and on Sat, Dec 6, 2014 at 9:59 AM

With the holiday season officially upon us, we at the Seven Days food desk have cookies on the brain. Thus, we kick off our first monthly "Seven Best" list with an ode to some of our favorites in the sweet state of Vermont.

Rather than limiting ourselves to holiday cookies, we decided to take stock of the very best cookies (and cookie-like sweets) Vermont has to offer. From Magic Bars to classic chocolates chips, here are seven exemplary treats to sate your inner Cookie Monster. Just remember what the blue man himself learned back in 2004, "A Cookie is a Sometimes Food." Or not. 

1. Chocolate Chip Cookie, Bluebird Coffee Stop

click to enlarge Chocolate chip cookies at Bluebird Coffee Stop at the Innovation Center - ALICE LEVITT
  • Alice Levitt
  • Chocolate chip cookies at Bluebird Coffee Stop at the Innovation Center
Burlington's recent chocolate chip history has been a saga of outstanding highs and gutting disappointment. For decades, there was the legendary, melty Fresh Market cookie on Pine Street. A year after that store closed in 2012, Guild Fine Meats cured what ailed us with a nutty, buttery version that we named one of the best new dishes of 2013. Now that Guild is gone, too, Bluebird Coffee Stop has taken up the mantle with an improved chocolate chip that we call our new favorite. At once soft and chewy, the crisp edges crackle with the flavor of butter while dark chocolate works its way into nearly every bite. Our lives can continue normally now with a classic cookie we can rely on. — A.L.

2. Chocolate Meringue, Myer's Bagel Bakery

Chocolate meringue cookies - PHOTO COURTESY OF EMILY CONN
  • Photo courtesy of Emily Conn
  • Chocolate meringue cookies
Lately, Burlington's Myer's Bagel Bakery has been hitting its stride creating gluten-free equivalents of its wheat-laden specialties. For celiac sufferers, the chewy chocolate chip cookie might be a revelation, but we especially love a gluten-free treat with no wheat-filled cognate. Baker Emily Conn's chocolate meringue cookie seamlessly blends the melting of crunchy, chocolate flavored meringue with chocolate chunks. It's nearly impossible to discern where one substance ends and another begins. But understanding the cookie's magic might ruin the fun. — A.L.

3. Magic Bar, Bliss Village Store & Deli

click to enlarge Magic Bars from Bradford's Bliss Village Store & Deli - HANNAH PALMER EGAN
  • Hannah Palmer Egan
  • Magic Bars from Bradford's Bliss Village Store & Deli
This cookie bar starts with a buttery layer of crushed graham crackers, followed by sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, nuts and toasted coconut, each layered on top of each other for a gooey, slightly salty, nutty, chocolatey delight. The Bliss Village Store in Bradford has been making and serving it (along with sandwiches, salads and fried goods) for decades; it's a local favorite worth stopping for. — H.P.E.

4. Monkey Bread, Birchgrove Baking

OK, so monkey bread isn't a cookie. If anything, it's more of a croissant-doughnut-hole hybrid. But as much as we love Birchgrove's soft chocolate chip cookies, we just had to salute the fun little bites that John Belding and Jennifer Toce also sell in their mobile Montpelier cookie cart. A skinny layer of caramel crunches on the outside with every bite, while butter squishes from the folds of laminated dough. Sure, it's not strictly a cookie, but it's one of our favorite bite-size sweets, as much fun to eat as any sweet biscuit. — A.L.

5. Vermont Maple Cookie, Sweet Crunch Bakeshop and Catering Company

click to enlarge Sweet Crunch maple cookie sandwich - MATTHEW THORSEN
  • Matthew Thorsen
  • Sweet Crunch maple cookie sandwich
Rachael Ray likes them, which theoretically makes us hate them, but, sorry, there's just no arguing with Hyde Park's worst-kept secret at Sweet Crunch Bakeshop. The crunchy sugar cookie is all pointy edges, making it all the crisper. But the secret is a glaze of local maple syrup that brings a taste of the Green Mountains to practically every pore. — A.L.

6. S’mores Cookie, Cupboard Deli

I'm just a girl who "cain't say no" to s'mores in any form. For years, I was devoted to the Jeffersonville Cupboard Deli's s'mores bar, a crumbly graham cracker crust filled with a messy, melty orgy of bittersweet chocolate and sticky marshmallow. More recently, the dessert has been converted to cookie form, meaning the flavor I love in a size that doesn't take me a week to conquer.

7. Vermonter Cookie, Klinger's Bread Company

click to enlarge The Vermonter cookie from Klinger's - HANNAH PALMER EGAN
  • Hannah Palmer Egan
  • The Vermonter cookie from Klinger's
Studded with all manner of nuts, seeds and grains, the "Vermonter" cookie from Klinger's Bread Company in Burlington is hearty enough to quiet a hungry child (or food writer) between meals. And, for those of us who aren't super into sweets, it's a cookie that packs more flavor than sugar.

'Seven Best' is a series in which Seven Days food writers Alice Levitt and Hannah Palmer Egan sing the praises of their favorite examples of a particular dining category. Look for the posts the first Friday of each month.


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About The Authors

Hannah Palmer Egan

Hannah Palmer Egan

Bio:
Hannah Palmer Egan is a food and drink writer at Seven Days.
Alice Levitt

Alice Levitt

Bio:
AAN award-winning food writer Alice Levitt is a fan of the exotic, the excellent and automats. She wrote for Seven Days 2007-2015.

More by Hannah Palmer Egan

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