By Sarah Lok (20A03A) and Valerie Tan (20A01E)
Here’s a challenge: try naming some cookie stores in Singapore.
Chances are, you probably have Famous Amos in your list. But maybe it’s the only name on your list. Perhaps you’d have come up with Subway or KOOKS Creamery as well, but neither of them are full-fledged cookie stores.
This is, to us cookie lovers, a pity: are other cookie stores really that unremarkable?
We decided to check out three of them to find out—none of them around Marymount, we’ll admit, but all at least just a stone’s throw away in the Orchard area.
Cookie Mixx ($7.90 per 100g)
We had a bit of trouble finding this store, small and almost unnoticeable in the sea of food outlets and people in ION Orchard’s basement. Nevertheless, one factor immediately drew our attention when we spotted it: a man standing in front of the kiosk handing out free samples, chatting to another customer with a cheery smile.
As it turns out, Cookie Mixx is a local family-owned business that started not too long ago in July 2018. Riding on the global health foods trend, their main selling point is their healthier cookies with superfood toppings, reduced sugar, and supposedly premium ingredients. We instantly felt a sense of warmth while watching the man converse with the other customers: the passion on his face was clearly evident.
It took some time for our cookie order to arrive, but a little eavesdropping on the man’s discussion with another customer gleaned some information for us: all cookies are freshly baked from day to night, accounting for the slightly longer waiting time as opposed to other cookie stores; indeed, the scent of freshly-baked cookies wafted through the air, whetting our appetites effortlessly. When we finally received our cookies about five minutes later, they were warm and packed neatly in a handy resealable bag.
Instead of our teeth sinking into a small, dense cookie like we’d expected, we were instead greeted with a resounding crunch when we bit into a piece—a surprise right from the beginning! The cookies’ slightly chewy chocolate chunks served as a strong contrast in texture, and was a breath of fresh air compared to the usual chocolate chips found in most other cookies. Furthermore, these cookies were also especially crumbly—crumbs easily dusted our fingers as we took them out of the bag—though not to the extent of falling apart in your hands, or getting especially messy to eat. Perhaps what stood out most about these cookies was how breathtakingly light they were: they felt almost weightless sitting in our mouths, and definitely tasted guilt-free, perfectly in line with the brand’s key selling point of health-consciousness. (In fact, writing this review, we still remember the taste of those cookies we’d had more than a week ago, and desperately wish we’d gotten more to enjoy.)
Though the price point may seem a little steep, the quality of the cookies was well worth the cost—they were certainly delicious without being too sinful, and paying a little more to support a local business doesn’t seem like a bad tradeoff in our eyes. The next time we return, we would definitely give their cookie customisation a try: with so many interesting toppings, it was certainly tempting!
Overall, if you’re looking for guilt-free treats, or are feeling adventurous enough to create new flavour combinations for yourself, this place is definitely worth a shot.
Ben’s Cookies ($2.95 per piece)
Our next destination was Ben’s Cookies, specifically the outlet in Wisma Atria. Its bright red exterior—reminiscent of that of red telephone boxes—not only screamed England, but also made it easy to spot amidst numerous other stores and the sea of shoppers scrambling to buy last-minute Christmas gifts.
The store’s design was not the only stark contrast we’d noticed when we inadvertently began our comparisons: unlike Cookie Mixx, “indulgence” would be the perfect word to describe their chocolate chip cookies.
Nowhere else, probably, have we ever found cookies so humongous. They’re even more value-for-money when it comes to their more unique flavours such as peanut butter and milk chocolate, as all their original-size cookies are equally priced.
Their chocolate chip cookie was all but an explosion of flavours: not only did the soft cookie dough melt in our mouths upon first bite, but the huge melted bits of gooey chocolate running throughout the entire cookie also delivered smooth accompanying bursts of unexcessive sweetness. And we’d ask for nothing more—it was a thoroughly enjoyable eat from start to finish.
Given the cookie’s relative softness, we were slightly afraid it would break apart as we continued eating it on our way to our third cookie store, but it managed to stay in one piece. One, however, certainly has to be a little more careful while eating it—the chocolate did stick to its paper packaging at times, and had to be pried off gently.
This chocolate chip cookie is definitely not one for casual snacking: we were feeling a little overwhelmed after finishing our first cookie. As it left a rich aftertaste, we think that eating more than two would be certain to make one’s Marginal Cost exceed their Marginal Utility (as every good Economics student would say).
Overall, these cookies—quite literally—hit that sweet spot. They’re neither ridiculously sweet nor overly tasteless; they’re neither too dense nor extremely crumbly. We’d definitely return, and we’re sure that readers who enjoy sweet treats (often or once in a while) will love it as much as we did.
Nasty Cookie ($4.20 per classic piece, $4.90 per premium piece)
This is probably the most well-known brand among the three that we’ve reviewed, notable for its iconic baby blue brand colour, unusual origin story (it was set up by a professional bodybuilder!), and, well, Instagrammability. Having seen multiple shots of this homegrown brand’s self-proclaimed “Singapore’s most outrageous cookie”, we were definitely curious. Did this cookie store truly live up to its hype?
Tucked along a row of equally bright, Instagram-friendly shops in Funan, any passer-by would instantly notice its array of, well, nasty-looking cookies. This store, like Ben’s Cookies, is the antithesis of Cookie Mixx: an abundance of indulgent toppings—ranging from Oreo to Biscoff—was amalgamated within each biscuit. And if those aren’t enough to possibly make your morning workout go to waste, customers can then choose from a range of three additional cookie fillings: Nutella, marshmallow, or dulce de leche (a sweet Latin American substance similar in flavour to caramel).
With that said, the experience of ordering our cookie was certainly unlike any other. Having picked our chocolate chip cookie, we now watched our marshmallow filling get injected into it with a syringe right in front of our very eyes, before being heated up and delivered to us in a box that resembled McDonald’s burger boxes—but prettier. Another thing that impressed us even before we tasted the cookie was the store’s receipts, which were baby blue in colour rather than the usual plain white sported by other stores.
After taking a few pictures in front of the iconic wall decorations, we opened up our box to consume the cookie. It was soft and sweet, similar to what we’d had at Ben’s Cookies. This, together with the melted chocolate chunks, made for a delicious cookie on first bite.
However, the marshmallow filling we’d selected unfortunately did not manage to live up to our expectations; we thought it would’ve made a noticeable difference, but its taste seemed to have been overwhelmed by the rest of the cookie. While it’s possible that there was simply too little marshmallow filling to begin with—as it was injected only in the centre of the cookie—this was perhaps a mistake on our part too. After all, it may have blended too well with the equally gooey chocolate in the cookie, and we might have been better off trying another filling like the dulce de leche; the marshmallow filling may have stood out more with other cookie bases that had less syrupy ingredients such as O’Smarties (a cookie filled with Smarties chocolate).
The price point may be a little steep for the average student; we found it to be a bit of a strain on our wallets for just one regular-size cookie. However, some might find it well worth the cash because of the sheer amount of toppings within each cookie, as well as the unique concept of injecting fillings into the cookie and the overall aesthetic of the brand. While our first experience with its chocolate chip cookie may have been a slight let-down, we wouldn’t mind coming back for their other more unique cookie bases like Lets Pretzel, as well as their seasonal flavours.
The name of “Healthiest Cookies” definitely goes to Cookie Mixx, while Ben’s Cookies snags the title of “Most Value-for-Money”. And if you’re looking for something special to spice up your Instagram feed, a trip to Nasty Cookie goes without saying.
All in all, cookies in Singapore aren’t just limited to Famous Amos or Subway cookies—these are just three of the several other cookie stores scattered around the island. So if you’re feeling up for a sweet treat, or lamenting about how that’s the way the cookie crumbles, then a short run to one (or three) of these stores would be sure to lift your spirits.