NYC Cookies: Petrossian is no Levain but…

Date October 24, 2008

These are some damn good cookies. Petrossian, the company known for importing Russian caviar, also operates a Cafe/Bakery on 7th Avenue between 57th & 58th Street where they sell three varieties of fresh-baked cookies: Chocolate chip pecan ($3), Double chocolate walnut ($3), and Oatmeal raisin with walnut ($2). Each cookie is delicious, but collectively they still don’t top Levain as the best cookies in the city. Read on to find out why. Special thanks to Sweet Freak for the discovery.

Cookie Tower: Choc. Chip Pecan, Double Choc. Walnut, Oatmeal Raisin w/ Walnut

Chocolate Discs are Better Than Chocolate Chips

Like the Jacques Torres chocolate chip cookies, Petrossian uses dark chocolate discs to make sure there’s fudgy chocolate in every bite of their chocolate chip pecan cookie.

The crisp, clean-tasting dark chocolate is a double threat. It’s fudgy and decadent in the middle while also blending with the cookie edges to create a crisp and buttery outside and base. The pecans enhance only the texture, adding some crunch, without changing the overall flavor.

Double Chocolate Paradox

Levain’s Dark Chocolate Chocolate Chip cookie is so buttery and decadent I simply call it “death by chocolate.” Petrossian’s double chocolate walnut cookie is more like a meringue, with a crisp and thin chewy exterior encasing innards which are simultaneously light, airy and fudgy. The walnuts are sparingly dispersed but when you do find one, they taste as if they’ve been toasted and provide a nice crunch and flavor.

A Great Take on a Classic

Oatmeal cookies tend to go the way of the bagel, they were great until all the good bagel stores closed and Dunkin Donuts took over. Nowadays its as hard finding a great bagel as it is finding a great oatmeal cookie. Petrossian makes a great oatmeal cookie. Hints of maple and cinnamon mingle with crunchy bits of walnut and chewy bits of raisin. The cookie itself is almost cake-like on the inside but it’s crisp on the outside, fortified by toasted oats, the flavor of which tastes homemade and lingers after every bite.


911 Seventh Avenue between 57th & 58th Street
New York, NY 10019
Hours: Mon. – Fri. 7:30AM to 8PM

31 Responses to “NYC Cookies: Petrossian is no Levain but…”

  1. Hamburger America said:

    Those look great, but I have a constant jones for Andrew Fischel’s Bacon Chocolate Chip cookies at his R.U.B. BBQ on 23rd St. They are new to the menu and made with his own house-made bacon…whoa.

  2. The NYC Food Guy said:

    Hamburger America,

    Wow dude. That’s no joke. I haven’t been to RUB in a while, what else am I missing? What’s your go to meal when you eat there? Have you tried Ronnie Sue’s Bacon Covered Chocolate in Essex Market?

  3. Hamburger America said:

    Yes, I think I ate some of that bacon at Josh Ozersky’s Meatopia last August. My go-to at RUB is the chili-cheese fries and burnt ends. The burnt ends are basically just nubs of burned beef fat and the chili-cheese fries are the best I’ve ever eaten (not kidding)

  4. The NYC Food Guy said:

    They are definitely the best chili cheese fries I’ve ever had as well. You know how I feel about them from this post. What were your thoughts on the chocolate covered bacon? Personally I loved Ronnie Sue but didn’t love the bacon. I mean it was chocolate and it was bacon, they just didn’t go together. What’s the best burger you’ve had recently? Have you ever had the burger at Brooklyn Diner? It’s my top burger in the city.

  5. kristen said:

    omgz i just got back from the bar and i’m starviiiiing looking at this site! those cookies like amaaaaziiiing! seriously — all i want to do right now is shove those in my mouth, and i can’t because boys will call me fat, DAMN IT!!!!!

    i bet phil loves these cookies!

  6. Jack said:

    Wow, another stumble home munchie night for Kristen, way to go. What bar did you goto?

  7. Phil said:

    hmm never been a big cookie guy but NYCFG never seems to disappoint. Will definitely check it out. Thanks buddy.

  8. Howfresh said:

    I’m saying though. No love for the nut-allergics. Haters. Guess I’ll never know.

  9. Sweet Freak said:

    Glad I could share a very worthy cookie with you! They are pretty ridiculous (I know, Howfresh – wish there was a non-nut version). And thanks for reminding me to make it over to Jacques Torres – it’s been too long since I visited Mr. Chocolate. Stay tuned for more chocolate chip cookie recon…

  10. Before Sunrise said:

    These look better than the Jacques Torres ones, is that true FG?

  11. kristen said:

    omgz how fresh — how can you hate nuts!? i looove nuts! they make everything SO much better!

    jack, i was at bar twelve in murray hill (i know, lame!) for my friends bday last night and we got soo shitfaced, you should have come through!

  12. Phil said:

    Was Bar XII fun? I actually almost went by there last night. Ended the night at 2nd Ave deli last night, had an absolute MONSTER of a sandwich…. Corned beef, salami, cole slaw and russian on a triple decker. Was INTENSE. great but very expensive.

  13. The NYC Food Guy said:

    How Fresh,

    Sorry dude. We gotta do Piper’s Kilt one of these days. Can you handle a Piper’s lunch move in two weeks?

    Sweet Freak,

    I look forward to seeing what else you discover.

    Before Sunrise,

    I don’t think I could say which is better until I have a warm version of Petrossian’s cookie. Jacques Torres has a cookie warmer keeping all the cookies nice and melty.


    Not even going to touch that one.


    Nice move dude. That must have run you at least 20 bucks?

  14. Phil said:

    yeah, like 35 bucks with 2 beers and tip. Pretty excessive for 5am if you ask me (or probably ask anyone), but it satisfied. I actually finished the entire thing so i’m quite impressed with myself.

  15. Before Sunrise said:

    FG, You got me thinking with the warm Vs. Cold thing… I suppose part of the reason why Levain’s cookies are so good is that they are always fresh out of the oven or, at the very least, warm. I’ve never had them cold, wonder if they’d be as good.

  16. The NYC Food Guy said:


    Nice work dude. That’s serious bill at the end of the night. You’re making us proud here, though. Legit sandwich and some beers, quality. You get fries?

    Before Sunrise,

    Levain is definitely best in warm form, but its still damn good when cool. I need to try a Petrossian warm before I can make the final judgement.

  17. Before Sunrise said:

    I posted this link on Sweet Freak’s blog asking her if she has been to these places and, if so, how good they are. Asking you the same question 🙂

    (sorry, I am bad with hyperlinks…)

  18. The NYC Food Guy said:

    Before Sunrise,

    I haven’t been to any of those places. Which sounds the most appetizing to you?

  19. Before Sunrise said:

    Alfanoose – I love falafel and if their middle eastern desserts are any good, they’re something I like too; double crispy bakery sounds nice too; I’d love to check out Spice Market, seems a great place to shop in. Other than that, to be honest, the article disappointed me, was misleadng as it did not focus on desserts and sweets as indicated in the title.

  20. Phil said:

    No, sadly I did not get any fries. What was up with the website today? I’ve been trying to get on several times but I guess it was down. Too much traffic food guy?

  21. The NYC Food Guy said:

    Before Sunrise,

    I agree, the article was underwhelming, I clicked over to it from Serious Eats last week and was equally disappointed. Spice Corner is Indian? Do you cook Indian?


    I’m not sure what’s up with the website, I haven’t had any trouble logging on. Is it working better for you now?

  22. Before Sunrise said:

    Not sure if Spice Corner (not Spice Market, thanks for the correction!) is Indian, but it sells lots of spices 🙂

    I have never tried to cook Indian, should put it on my list. I definitely love eating Indian food. Do you cook Indian?

  23. The NYC Food Guy said:

    Before Sunrise,

    I don’t really cook or eat Indian. I wouldn’t know the first thing about cooking it and thanks to one big Indian meal and some other smaller Kati Roll experiences, I have a better idea when navigating an Indian menu but I’m still not running to try it again.

    Where’s the best Indian you’ve had in the city? What are your favorite foods to cook? What are some Brazilian specialties you’ve brought up here with you?

  24. Before Sunrise said:


    I haven’t really explored much Indian food here in the city, my main experiences with it were in London and Brazil. I don’t know my way around it all that well either, I just stick to what I know 🙂

    My favourite foods to cook are the easy ones 🙂 I like to come up with different sauces and toppings for pasta; I have begun to enjoy cooking meat more; I’d love to make pizza at home, but never have (I’d like to buy a stone to put it on); stir fries; beans; rice; salads; sandwiches. I made a beef chilli this weekend for the first time and it came out pretty good. I try to experiment with new things as much as I can…

    As for Brazilian food, I don’t really cook it all that much, but there is some really good stuff to try. Look at this restaurant’s website, it gives you a rundown of many regional dishes in Brazil:

    What do you like to cook?

  25. Sweet Freak said:

    FoodGuy & Before Sunrise,

    Agreed. Slim pickings in that NYT piece. Then again, I”m not a huge Asian sweets fan. *But* I have been to Poseidon and the big, bad baklava kicks ass.

  26. Before Sunrise said:

    Thanks for the tip Sweet Freak. Never had a Baklava, so maybe I’ll try that one.

  27. Before Sunrise said:

    Had a Petrossian chocolate chip pecan today…. I was somewhat disappointed. I definitely prefer Jacques Torres over this one.

  28. The NYC Food Guy said:

    Before Sunrise,

    Was the Petrossian warm? I can’t say for sure until I have a fresh/warm Petrossian but based on what I’ve heard from you in the past, I have a feeling I’ll agree with your assessment.

  29. Before Sunrise said:

    It wasn’t warm, and you’re right, it probably isn’t a fair assessment until I try a warm one. Thing is, I asked if there were any warm ones and the lady was kind of rude about it, so am not sure how to get a warm one there. Maybe the only way to compare the two is to eat a cold Jacques Torres, but who would want to do that?

    So, based on all that, I’ve decided to declare that Jacques Torres is better, at least until I try a warn Petrossian 🙂

  30. lawyers for veterans said:

    Awesome job on this post.

  31. scratchline said:

    Thankfully, Petrossian isn’t Levain. And their chocolate chip cookie is better. Higher quality chocolate, crunchier, more thoroughly cooked, and cheaper. I also think it’s better than Momofuku’s offerings. Maybe Levain has slipped over the years and there’s no denying that they make a quality cookie but I think both Petrossian and Salty Oats have them beat.

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