Have you ever gotten high and wondered what the best chocolate chip cookie in Evanston is? I found myself having this same query, and as the annoying Medill student I am, my next question was: how can I turn this into content? For the sake of journalism, I went on a quest to find the best chocolate chip in Evanston armed with a friend, 8mg THC and some very entertaining voice memos.
I had never set foot in Bennison’s before, so I can’t speak to its ambiance when sober, but I can say that I was VERY into its vibe while high. The lighting was warm and inviting, giving me big old-school bakery realness.
The cookie wasn’t actively bad, but we weren’t wowed by the appearance. It was a decent size (think diameter of a grapefruit) but fairly pale with a uniform look. She was, in fact, just like other girls.
It was a lot crispier than its appearance would suggest. I would have liked a bit of softness in the middle, but my friend respects that Bennison’s committed to crispiness because, in her words, “I don’t like a cookie that doesn’t commit.”
Despite an average to lackluster performance on appearance and texture, chocolate ratio is where Bennison’s shines. The cookie is chock-a-block with chocolate, and I would’ve given it a perfect 10 if it had more variety in chunk size.
For $1.80, you get a nice-sized cookie that isn’t half bad.
It’s nothing to write home about, but if you’re high and want a warm atmosphere and something crunchy, Bennison’s is the place to go.
For the sake of journalistic integrity, I should disclose that my friend and I have a bit of a Hewn bias. The rustic yet pretentious aesthetic reminds me of my Bay Area roots and makes me feel right at home. We had very high expectations for their chocolate chip cookie. Boy, were we disappointed.
It was pale and grapefruit-size and with flakiness that signals a lot of butter, which I appreciate. This made the cookie look more homemade, but it wasn’t enough to save it.
When we broke the cookie in two, it was absolutely silent, which was not a good sign to two crispy-leaning judges. My friend appreciated that Hewn was fully committed to softness but wasn’t sure she “loved the direction it committed in.”
It was solid but slightly less so than Bennison’s.
It was a nice size, but for $2.25 a pop, its price didn’t really match the quality.
We both agreed the flavor was odd. Not necessarily bad, but it did catch us off guard in a way we didn’t like. Overall, we felt very let down. Will we still go there to buy a $5 croissant? Absolutely. But we know they can do better.
I had no idea what to expect from Beth’s Little Bakeshop, having never been there. It’s a small space but has a cute interior. Their salted chocolate chunk cookie was labeled as Beth’s favorite, though, so we knew what we were in for.
This is one fine-looking cookie. It had the perfect gradient of dark outside to light inside. There were big pools of chocolate and flaky sea salt on top which made us feel very ~fancy~.
This cookie had ideal crunchy edges with a little bit of softness in the middle. Its exterior had a a lot of wrinkles and folds, which gave it a homemade feel.
Let’s talk about the perfect stratigraphy. When you bite into this cookie, there are thin, evenly distributed layers of chocolate. The Grand Canyon could never.
For $2.25, you’re getting your money’s worth. Had it been a little bigger or a little cheaper, it probably would have gotten a perfect 10.
This was by far the closest to our ideal cookie, making Beth’s the dark horse in our cookie tasting. If you’re a fan of chocolate chip cookies, or just delicious things in general, then you need to head to Beth’s.
After a true Cinderella story from Beth’s, it was time to head to Tag’s Bakery. We had a mini panic attack when we thought that they were out of chocolate chip cookies, but luckily we snagged the last one (spoiler alert: not worth it).
The cookie was quite small, thin, pale and overall, lackluster. It was downright pasty. My friend said, “It’s like how a kid draws a chocolate chip cookie.”
The short version is that my friend felt the cookie reminded her of the product of the PlayDough cooking set. Enough said.
The chocolate ratio wasn’t horrible, but wasn’t great either.
For $1.27 it was by far the cheapest cookie of the day, but to be honest I wouldn’t pay money for it. If this cookie was free and I was high, I would not turn it down, but then again, who’s going to turn down a free cookie?
We did feel bad for raking Tag’s over the coals, but everything else in the bakery looked absolutely delicious. The service was excellent and the ambiance was nice. Just please, for the love of God, don’t get the chocolate chip cookie.
Finally, it was time to make the long haul back to downtown to visit Insomnia Cookies. There was no way I was going to walk 30 minutes back, so we caught the bus. If you haven’t ridden the 201 high with a bag of half-eaten chocolate chip cookies and an open container of milk, can you really say you’ve had the full Northwestern experience?
Though they were the smallest cookies so far, they were much thicker and had an even mix of big and little chunks of warm, melty chocolate.
The cookie’s texture was craggy, and while it was soft, that’s what you would expect and crave from a warm cookie. The edges did have a little bit of a crunch which was appreciated. Even for two mostly crispy cookie lovers, this was our ideal soft cookie.
There could be a little bit more chocolate, but we appreciated the variety in chunk sizes.
We felt the cookies could have been a little bigger for $2 each, but they were also thicker, and we by no means felt cheated.
We would have given them a full 10 for overall yumminess if the cookie was just bit crispier, but overall Insomnia knocked it out of the park. Nicely done, Insomnia.