If you have a sweet tooth and want to enjoy a delicious cookie in New York, you have to try Levain’s, the most famous cookies in The Big Apple. There are dozens of bakeries all over the city, and each one of them offers a delicious selection of sweets. However, Levain has earned its spot as the best of the best.
Popular opinion agrees that their chocolate chip walnut cookies are the best in the city. Besides the army of fans, the bakery has won different awards from TripAdvisor, Yelp, and even The New York Times. Every online review will tell you these heavenly cookies live up to their name.
A bit of history
Back in 1995, Connie McDonalds and Pam Weekes decided to join their passion for food, their hard work, and their friendship to create their own baking company. A competitive swimmer and a triathlete decided to hop on a new adventure and start an adventure, a small bread shop called Levain Bakery.
While training for a triathlon they created the ultimate chocolate chip walnut cookie to get some energy. It was so delicious, they decided to sell a batch in their bakery, and boom! Just like that, a new icon was born. The cookies flew off the shelves and started to become famous. Before they even knew it, their small shop on West 74th Street became the center of dozens of people from everywhere looking for the famous cookies.
One of the things that made people fall in love with the place and their cookies is that everything is baked fresh on-site every day. Any leftovers are donated to charity each night, and now, 25 years later, they still do. Levain Bakery has grown a lot from the small chop created in 1995. Nowadays, there are seven locations around the city.
What makes Levain’s cookies so special?
If you’ve never tried them, you’re probably wondering what it is about these cookies that are special and famous. Truth is, you won’t know it for sure until you try them out, but here are some reasons why people stand in line to get these delicious cookies.
The variety of flavors
Yeah, chocolate chip walnut is the superstar of this bakery, however, it doesn’t mean it’s the only kind of cookie they sell. They have different types of cookies, each one as delicious and mouthwatering as the other: dark chocolate chip, dark chocolate peanut butter, and oatmeal raisin cookies.
Levain’s cookies are huge! 6 ounces of crunchy, yet smooth dough and oozing chocolate. Besides the original version, there is a smaller one, tiny 2 ounces cookies if you want mini bites.
When you think about the best cookie in New York, a high price seems the right fee to pay for such a famous and iconic sweet, right? However, nothing further from the truth. You can get an awesome gift box with two huge cookies for $27.
They are just delicious!
There’s no better reason to describe why they are so famous. They taste wonderful, and each bite is a heavenly experience, because they are crunchy and soft at the same time, with smooth chips that melt in your mouth.
5 things you need to know before heading to Levain Bakery
If you want to head over to Levain and try the best cookies in NYC, there are some interesting facts you should know before going. I bet these will only make you want to try them even more.
There’s an interesting reason why they are so huge
Connie and Pamela told Food Porn during an interview that 6 ounces is the exact weight each cookie needs to end up with the perfect texture Levin cookies have. 6 oz is the maximum size cookies can get to be crispy on the outside and gooey inside.
If they were any bigger they would start burning on the outside and wouldn’t be as perfect as they are.
They will soon start selling frozen dough
Can you imagine how delicious your kitchen would smell with a badge of chocolate chip walnut cookies on the oven? It is an incredible experience and now you can make it a reality since they have started selling frozen cookies.
Picture this, it’s Sunday afternoon, you have some friends or family over, get your Levain cookies out of the freezer and bake them for everyone to enjoy. You can get any of their four flavors. Soon enough you can get to your favorite supermarket and get them.
They are high in calories
This probably is not a surprise for you, but these cookies have a lot of calories in them. However, we cannot know exactly how much. MyFitnessPal and Calorie count have estimated that each one has between 538 and 606 calories. It means that a single Levain cookie contains more calories than a Quarter Pounder from McDonald's.
There is a well-hidden secret at Levain’s
No one outside Levain’s knows the secret to keep the cookies from spreading while baking. Many people have tried to imitate their secret, but they have not been 100% successful. Some say that the secret is to let the cookie dough rest about 20 minutes before going into the oven.
There are 7 locations where you can get your Levain cookies
Beware that at any of these places you go, you will probably find a long line of people waiting to get their cookies. However, you get lucky if you try early in the morning during weekdays.
Each location has different opening hours, so keep this in mind before going to get your cookies:
- Upper West Side: 351 Amsterdam Ave, NYC, 10023. Opening hours: 7:30 AM-9 PM
- NoHo: 340 Lafayette ST. NYC 10012. Opening hours: 7:30 AM-9 PM
- Harlem: 2167 Frederick Douglass BLVD, NYC 10026. Opening hours: 8 AM-8 PM
- Upper East Side: 1484 Third AVE, NYC 10028. Opening hours: 7:30 AM-9 PM
- Wainscott: 354 Montauk Hwy Wainscott, NY 11975. Opening hours: 8 AM- 3:30 PM
- Williamsburg: 164 N. 4TH ST., Brooklyn, NY 11211. Opening hours: 8 AM-9 PM
- Georgetown, D.C: 3131 M STREET NW, Washington, D.C. 20007. Opening hours: 8 AM-8 PM
If you are planning to go to Levain Bakery, remember to visit the place during the mornings, or you can order online cookie boxes with all your favorite flavors.