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Secret Cookie Shop

While walking through the East Village this evening I saw a new store with stacks of cookies in the window. There was no sign out front, so I went in to check it out. I asked the clerk behind the counter, “What is the name of this place?” He answered slyly, “It is a secret.” He wasn’t kidding. There wasn’t one sign in the entire store with a name on it and he would not tell me what it was. He said it was a secret for now, and that the owner may reveal it in the next few weeks. How intriguing.

The cookie shop has been open for two days now, and sells absolutely gorgeous cookies. The chocolate chip cookies remind me of City Bakery’s: large and chewy with a golden brown, sugary crust. The large cookies are grouped by type (chocolate chip, double chocolate, oatmeal, etc.) and stacked on top of one another in the display case. They also sell croissants that look fantastic. Since I was too full from dinner to try one tonight, I will be back tomorrow to investigate and taste test further. If anyone knows the mystery surrounding this shop please share. I can’t wait to find out the full story.

Secret Cookie Shop
1st Avenue between 13th and 14th Street (West side of street)
Hours: 8am – 10pm (or until the cookies run out)


Kristin says on January 6th, 2006 at 1:56 am:

Well it won’t be such a secret for much longer!

Karen says on January 6th, 2006 at 9:00 am:

There’s a thread about this place on Chowhound’s Manhattan board. It may/may not be related to City Bakery. Depends on your take of the posts. :-) I’ll have to check it out soon.

Kelli says on January 6th, 2006 at 12:38 pm:

I knew those cookies looked too similar to City Bakery’s! Thanks for the tip Karen. I’ll go check it out now.

Luisa says on January 6th, 2006 at 3:13 pm:

I think Debbie at words to eat by wrote about this place a few months ago. Apparently the cookies are exactly like the ones at City Bakery…

debbie says on January 6th, 2006 at 4:36 pm:

Too funny–I blogged about this place back in November. It is indeed very mysterious, and their cookies are alarmingly similar to City Bakery. Off to check Chowhound now…

Nahal says on January 6th, 2006 at 6:19 pm:

mmm… i absolutely love croissants…tell me the secret when you know!!! (how exciting) ;)

keiko says on January 7th, 2006 at 12:03 pm:

Keilli – I’m looking forward to reading more of your sweet posts this year. Happy new year!

Laurie says on January 7th, 2006 at 4:56 pm:

I didn’t see any mention of my favorite cookie – Peanut Butter! Maybe that’s the biggest secret of all!
Mabye Amai could make that a specialty, with a chocolate glaze…

Jessica says on January 7th, 2006 at 8:29 pm:

Hi Kelli, I admit I haven’t tried many cookies in Manhattan, but I did get a “leftovers” (chocolate chip, coconut, macadamia, pecan, oats, raisins) cookie from Cookie Island near the WTC just before they closed. They only use butter and real vanilla. :-) It had a nice body, crunch and chew. Too bad they were driven out by high rent! I wonder how they compare with City Bakery.

Kelli says on January 7th, 2006 at 11:36 pm:

I’m sorry I missed Debbie’s earlier post — I wish I saw it back in Nov! How interesting that they were open earlier, then closed down and came back again recently.

The Chowhound thread was right to call it “City Fakery.” The evidence doesn’t seem conclusive that is is associated with it, but I’m still highly suspicious. I’ll keep an eye on it :)

Julie says on January 11th, 2006 at 11:44 am:

I tried this place last night–and I have to say, their chocolate chip cookie was the best I’ve ever had! Better than City Bakery, if you ask me. The clerk did say the name was a “secret” and that they “might never have a sign.” So weird!

Kelli says on January 13th, 2006 at 10:47 am:

Thanks for the review Julie. I still think it’s strange to have shop without a name. Maybe it’s interesting as an opening gimmick, but they must not plan to be around long without any ID.

deep says on January 13th, 2006 at 4:34 pm:

Yeh… I went there. Very cute, quirky lil’ shop. After inhaling the vanilla, buttery and chocolatey goodness.. I’ll vouch for it being a CB cookie. I used to work nearby there in the Flatiron District.. yummm…. the crust is the same… City Bakery Doppelgangers?!?

Lucky EVillagers..


Jessica says on January 17th, 2006 at 8:32 pm:

Dum dum dum, NY mag says it’s called Birdbath and is related to City Bakery!

Kelli says on January 22nd, 2006 at 8:51 pm:

Ah, yes — it looks like New York magazine has solved the mystery. I finally read the article and it says the store is owned by Maury Rubin, owner of City Bakery. The goal is to use the store as a “showcase for eco-friendly materials.” The walls are made from wheat and sunflower seed, the paint is milk-based, etc. In my opinion, some signage would do the most to promote this awareness. I certainly didn’t notice anything but the cookies when I went in. The space is nice, but it seems a bit ridiculous to claim a cookie shop with no name is there to promote environmental awareness. Only in New York.

Tabatha says on January 26th, 2006 at 10:41 am:

Work nearby and noticed this shop never went in because it is soo dark looking not inviting at all, kind of strange perhaps more lighting will help this place.

Annie says on March 11th, 2006 at 2:10 am:

Yes, i have had cookies from this place a couple of times. my favorite is the chocolate cookie with white chocolate chips. it’s delish! so soft. but the strange thing is that i heard about it from my vegan friends and i don’t think it’s even a vegan cookie! but they are so environmentally aware that i find it odd that they may be made with eggs! anyway, i’m just looking for someone to clear this up for me: do they contain eggs or not?!

Kelli says on March 11th, 2006 at 10:37 am:

They are a spinoff from City Bakery, with the same cookies, so I’m sure they use eggs in their recipes. They don’t make any claims to be Vegan, they just claim to have an environmentally aware store. You can read more about it here: http://www.buildagreenbakery.com/

Kate says on April 11th, 2006 at 4:15 pm:

I thought this bakery had no atmosphere!!! Why would we need another City Bakery?? If i want one of their cookies i will go there!


labbless says on January 3rd, 2010 at 1:42 am:

I congratulate, a brilliant idea and it is duly

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Lovescool is the documentation of a journey to discover what sweet things are out there, why people love them so much, and perhaps what it takes to start something new.

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An interest, that turned into a blog, that turned into a career. Kelli Bernard is now the owner and baker of Amai Tea & Bake House.

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