One Girl Cookies, Jacques Torres Brighten Up a Rainy Day
Saturday morning I headed out to Bar Tabac on Smith Street for brunch. This place seems to be a favorite with people from the neighborhood (it was crowded).
Don't get me wrong. I'm a big fan of French cuisine, I'm just usually turned off by French-themed restaurants. Can't we enjoy French food without the kitsch? I doubt very many restaurants in France are adorned with reproduction Lillet posters and faux smoke-stained walls. Decor aside, Bar Tabac served up standard brunch fare with a French twist. While the popular eggs benedict that kept flowing by our table looked every bit its part, I opted for the steak and eggs with fries. Although my over-easy eggs were over medium, the piece of steak was surprisingly tender given the price (about $11.00). I always love mesclun salad with taragon white wine vinegar and a hint of mustard. One stand out was the caffe latte. It had a smooth and chocolatey taste.
What really sparked my interest though was a little shop around the corner from Bar Tabac. With its just off Smith location, One Girl Cookies is a gem of a shop. The baby blue walls and chocolate-brown accents are inviting. Although there are bar stools for coffee and cookies, it's really a storefront for a cookie operation. The expansive kitchen in the back says: "We mean business." Who would've thought there would be such a market for painstakingly homemade cookies, but the copious reviews put that question to rest. Not only a cute place to go for a cup of joe, this could be a special alternative to the predictable cake.
Next on my list for that rainy and cold day, was Jacques Torres Chocolate in Dumbo. This European styled shop is a chocolate lovers dream. There's a wide selection of handmade chocolates and the velvety smooth and thick classic hot chocolate is among the best I've had. Their other hot chocolate made with hot peppers is "Wicked." Caramelized and crunchy, the twice-baked chocolate croissant is a truly blissful experience. And don't even get me started on the chocolate chocolate chip cookie.
Bar Tabac is located at 128 Smith St. in Cobble Hill, 718-923-0918, and One Girl Cookies is located at 68 Dean Street also in Cobble Hill, 212-675-4996. Jacques Torres Chocolate is located at 66 Water Street in Dumbo, 718-875-9772.