Santa Monica, CA

Get Levain-Style Cookies from Paderia Bakehouse, now open in Santa Monica, CA

Joy Sun | @littlejoybigworld

Originally hailing from Fountain Valley in Orange County, Paderia Bakehouse has since expanded to Irvine and just recently opened their third location in Santa Monica this March. Paderia's cookies are the densest, thickest, not to mention most moist cookies I've ever had. A box of five cookies in my hand felt heavier to me than half a sheet cake. In all my visits to their original location in the past, I'd always held myself back from ordering their cookies, thinking "$4 for a cookie? Insanity!" But a new location is cause for celebration, so of course I had to finally try the cookies. And I learned why $4 for a cookie isn't actually insanity--they're so dense it's actually difficult to finish a Paderia cookie in a single sitting. I get it now.

Paderia usually carries five flavors and a rotating seasonal one. Their flavors include the Triple Chocolate, Chocolate Walnut, Sea Salt Chocolate, Peanut Butter Chocolate, and Thick Mint. It's so so hard to pick a favorite but I think I liked the Chocolate Walnut and Triple Chocolate the best since I'm a chocolate-fanatic. But they're all fudgy and amazing.

They recommend you heat up and consume the cookies within two days for optimal freshness and taste. I failed to heat up the cookies at first but they were still delicious! On day 3 (they were still fresh and moist despite sitting on our counter in a paper box) we finally microwaved the cookies in 10 second increments like the box suggests, and wow! The peanut butter chips in the cookie became very melty and extra cozy and wonderful.

Anyway. Paderia is all my cookie dreams come true.
Pineapple Tea & Raspberry MatchaImage courtesy of Joy Sun

But don't sleep on their other menu offerings! They also have tea infusions, coffees, horchata, and a wide variety of the best comfort-food pastries. I'm talking all the best ones: Portuguese Egg Tarts, Ensaymadas (filipino brioche), Banana Pudding, Malasadas (Hawaii-style filled doughnuts), Mini Personal Cheesecakes.

I'm both proud and embarrassed to admit I've eaten all their pastries except their ensaymada (goin' for it next time!) and you really cannot go wrong with any of them.

I forgot to eat the egg tarts on the same day and accidentally neglected them (the cookies, you know?). While they probably weren't as crispy the next day, the crust still retained that buttery flakiness and the egg custard was melt-in-your-mouth amazing.

And while I love bananas, I don't like banana-flavored anything, but I'd heard such rave reviews about their Banana Pudding that I thought I would give it a try. Everyone was right.

It's less of a pudding and more of a custard, or like a fluffy whipped banana cream. The banana flavor is not artificial at all and is more on the vanilla side if anything. What I loved the most about it was the layers! It was like pudding, then a layer of fresh banana and something that resembled cookie crumble or pie crust, then more pudding and bananas. These rival Magnolia Bakery's puddings for sure.

The banana pudding was probably my favorite. Actually maybe the egg tarts. Or maybe the Chocolate Peanut Butter cookie. Or they're all tied for first place--so far it looks like there isn't a thing this bakehouse can get wrong.

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SoCal native, matcha snob, boba expert. I'll be gallivanting my way around SD & OC to bring you the best small local businesses, underrated restaurants, and hot new establishments!

San Diego, CA

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