NYC Bakery Tour – part deux

If you’re interested in reading about the first cookie/pastry tour I did last time we were in NY – go here. The last time we were in NY and visited all these lovely bakeries, I made mental notes about what I should get on our next trip. Well lucky for me, this was our next trip… so I pretty much stuck to my plan. Guess, what… I made mental notes about what to get the next time I’m back in NY again. 😀 If I didn’t do that, I’d just get one of each at every place and this blog would no longer exist because I’d probably have a heart attack by now. I wouldn’t say I exactly behaved myself but I did better than I could have. Let’s see… cookie tour stop #1…

So it was FREEZING cold and crazy rainy so for our first stop we decided to go back to Jacques Torres and have some hot chocolate. The place instantly put a huge smile on my face the moment we walked in. Not only did I know I was about to have the best hot chocolate ever, but I was also in space with bright colors, happy children and lots and lots of chocolate!! Yep, I was pretty much in heaven!

Jacque Torres decor

the hot chocolate bar

I held off on a cookie this time (although the mudslide cookie I got last time was one of the best I’ve ever had!) and just went with the small wicked hot chocolate: rich velvety dark chocolate drink with spiced with hints of chili peppers (they use real melted chocolate in the drink!!)

my hot chocolate

The spices are very subtle, but added a little somethin somthin special… don’t be afraid to try it if you’re ever there (better yet, ask for a small sample – they are very accomodating!).  Just like the classic hot chocolate, this was very rich and chocolaty. My husband and I each got our own but couldn’t finish our “small” cups. We enjoyed a little break from the outside elements while sipping on this liquid heaven, but decided that next time we’ll definitely share a cup. A little goes a long way here – the stuff is intense!

Next up… Levain bakery, just around the corner! The place is a tiny little whole in the wall, but cookies are anything but small Those babies are GIANT!!!! (is that font GIANT enough for you? … I’m serious about the size of those cookies! 😉 ) This time I got the dark chocolate peanut butter chip cookie.  Adam got a little sourdough roll which I also tried…it was awesome!

Levain chocolate pb cookie

I should not that since we had very fancy dinner plans, I really tried no to ruin my appetite. So I did not touch this cookie until later in the night, and even then just had a tiny taste. It was awesome! LOTS of pb chips and a really great texture. I think they taste kind of like cookie dough on the inside. Oh these giants are superb!

Levain bakery also has a few savory items… I was eyeing one of their olive + goat cheese flat bread pizzas…. next time! :)

Last stop (I couldn’t resist it!): Magnolia Bakery (on the Upper West side). I know this place is quite controversial. My husband still thinks the only reason everyone likes the place is because it was featured on the Sex and the City, but honestly I truly believe they have the best chocolate/chocolate cupcakes… and I’ve tested this theory on many occasions. The upper west side location also has many other pastries so last time I decided I’d also get a brownie (brownies are basically my favorite category of baked goods) and of course the mandatory choc/choc cupcake. Again these were not enjoyed until later in the trip.

Magnolia cupcakes

The cupcake on the left is a red velvet cupcake I got for my sister, but I tried a tiny bite of it. We both weren’t crazy about Magnolia’s red velvet cupcake… I still say the choc/choc is the best! :) Oh and how cute are those Easter decorations?!

closeup of the chocolate cupcake

The white chocolate fudge bar brownie has a white chocolate layer and is topped with pecans. Sorry for uncreative descriptions, but all I can say is that it was delicious. I really love my brownies with lots of “stuff” and the white chocolate + pecans definitely rose to the occasion. I loved the crunch of the pecans over the creamy white choc topping… and the brownie was the perfect balance between fudgy and chewy… yum!

Magnolia brownie

And with these, my second bakery NYC tour is over. I actually had 2 other places on the list, but decided to cut it short because well… there was more “crack” in my sister’s fridge that I just knew I couldn’t resist 😉

There is always the next trip. Stay tuned for that one. I promise to throw a few “new” bakeries into the mix :)

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