When you think of Napa you are immediately filled with images of wineries, vines overflowing with grapes, elegant Cabernet filled stemware , plates of artisanal cheeses, and decadent, well-dressed people enjoying it all on the terrace of some lovely estate. Yes all of that exists in Napa, and I have several recommendations if you are heading that way. But what you don’t think of when you think of Napa is chocolate chip cookies! And what a mistake that is!
Napa is also home to Annie Baker (real name) doing business as Annie the Baker. If that is not destiny driving the bus I don’t know what is. I had the pleasure of meeting Annie while in the area to attend a French wine and cheese terrier (sounds swanky…think pairing) at the Oxbow Cheese and Wine Merchant in the Oxbow Public Market (another do not miss on your travel itinerary).
Anyway, I spent the afternoon as guests of Stephanie and Lassa Skinner, publishers of Culture magazine, a fantastic, beautifully photographed artisanal cheese publication. Talk about being in the right place at the right time. Annie stopped by to share a small batch of her delicious cookies. Within seconds of hitting my taste buds the stars were in alignment! It took one bite of a Doodle Snicker cookie to have me saying, put away the cheese and wine and bring me a glass of milk!
Annie the Baker has perfected a recipe for the absolute best homemade cookie I have ever tasted. And believe me, although I profess to not be an expert on anything, I’m probably pretty close on cookies! Annie’s cookies are soft, round (not flat) and full of mouth-watering flavor. And for those of us who are thinking that the last thing their belt line needs is another cookie (or 5) this is really the cookie that you can have just one and feel totally satisfied.
You can find Annie The Baker and her cookies at the St. Helena’s Farmers Market and the Napa Farmer’s Market too. So be sure to stop by and say “HI” if you in the area and get a sample of all 12 varieties:
Cocoa Almond Nib (Gluten Free) : A chocolate cookie with almonds and NO GLUTEN …Yay!
Cocoa Loco: a triple chocolate threat, chocolate cookie with semi-sweet and milk chocolate chips
Doodle Snicker: Cinnamon on the inside sugar crystals on the outside…like a snickerdoodle on crack!
Oatmeal Double Chocolate Chip : Oatmeal is healthy right? So buy a couple of dozen….love the hint of cinnamon
Peanut Butter Extreme! Really as if the PB wasn’t enough she added Peanut Butter Cups…to die for.
Penguin : Who doesn’t love a penguin? A chocolate cookie with white chocolate chips
Semisweet Chocolate Chunk A classic, revved up with Belgium chocolate
SugaMaMa: A sugar cookie with M&M’s that could keep my husband happy for life.
SugaRainbow: I call this the happy cookie, covered with festive sugar crystals bound to brighten your day.
Toffee Milk Chocolate Chip : Toffee and milk chocolate…really need I say more!
Tortuga: Overload on caramel, pecans and semi-sweet chocolate chips….delish.
Tuxedo Macadamia: Well it is in Napa so decadent has to be included semi-sweet chocolate, white chocolate and macadamia nuts in to brown sugar cookie dough… Impressive
Each cookie sells for $2…keep in mind, you get what you pay for and these are not your every day Chips Ahoy. Even better is you can create your own assortment pack tailored to that special person, event, or time of the month!
About the Napa Farmers Market:
Open Every Tuesday & Saturday from 8:00am to 12:30pm (May 1st thru Oct 30)
500 First Street in Downtown Napa (Next to Oxbow Public Market), Napa, CA
Be sure to check their website http://www.napafarmersmarket.com for special events and activities.
See you at the Market!