Thursday, March 21, 2013

Bergers Cookies

My friend and fellow dessert-lover Kate raved to me about Bergers Cookies for ages. Kate is the girl who once led all her friends on an eleven-stop cupcake walking tour around NYC for her birthday. So I know that if Kate recommends a baked good, I should take it seriously.

Bergers is a Baltimore institution, dating back to 1835. They have won all sorts of "Best in Baltimore" awards over the years. As far as I can tell from their website, all they make is various iterations of this one cookie, which are prepackaged and sold through loads of grocers and retailers throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.

Kate got married last month, and she had her aunt bring a box of these cookies to the wedding for me from Baltimore. A lot of effort went into getting these Bergers Cookies into my hands. That is true dedication, since Kate had other stuff on her mind at the time; for example, getting married.

Unfortunately, I did not love the Bergers like Kate does. They are plain vanilla cookies with gobs of chocolate fudge on top. One of my co-workers described them as tasting "like the black side of a black-and-white cookie."

This is just a personal preference thing, because I don't really like black-and-white cookies. I don't even like fudge, as it is usually too sugary and not enough chocolatey. With the Bergers, the cookie itself tasted too plain and boring to me. Plus, it's prepackaged by necessity, and I'm afraid that never does any favors to a cookie's freshness and moistness. And the fudge on top wasn't a rich enough chocolate for my tastes. I even found myself pulling off some of the fudge topping; the cookie tasted too saccharine with all the coating on.

Kate grew up with Bergers, and I imagine that plays a role in our discrepant fondness, as well. I grew up with Oreos, so I still love them. But I think if you gave a fully-formed adult with an adult palate an Oreo for the first time, he or she would not be impressed.

BOTTOM LINE: If you're a fan of black-and-white cookies and/or chocolate fudge, Bergers may be the cookies of your dreams. But if you're looking for a darker, less sugary chocolate, these are probably not for you.

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