In Cobble Hill, on any given Friday or Saturday after 8p.m., if you give a customer a cookie, he’s going to ask for a glass of wine.
On such a hot summer night after work, I take the F train out of Manhattan and head to Brooklyn to meet Dave Crofton at his bake shop. Within 35 minutes, I’m at the Bergen stop. My sweet tooth starts acting up, and suddenly the one block north to Dean Street could not be any farther. Once I have One Girl Cookies in sight, with its welcoming, open-air storefront and light buttery smells drifting down the street, I know that I am within the compass of sugary satisfaction.
I enter the store and a bell dings. I’m greeted by a wall of aged photos; they are sepia toned reprints of the chef-owner’s family members including co-owner Dawn Cassle’s aunt Tina, a major inspiration for her cookie enterprise. After a short wait in line the counter comes into clear view and with it all the tantalizing goodies. Dave appears, a tall, affable-looking man, and we sit for a chat on a wooden bench underneath a large chalkboard menu scribbled with the day’s specials.
Although tea cookies are their mainstay, their whoopie pies are the most popular. Expect to get your chocolate fix (and some steep prices too) with treats like the Juliette, Olga, Lucia, and Cecilla, pastries filled with caramel, mocha cream, and exceptionally good chocolate often sandwiched between shortbread or sugar cookies.
Dave tells me the history of how two West Village roommates fused their passion for baking, and insists One Girl is more than just a cookie shop. To prove it, they’ve started Confection, a weekend dessert bar seasonably inspired by their pastry chef Francine. At a quarter to eight, the garage door seals off their outdoor seating area. Then up to a dozen pastry chefs and baristas create the shop’s alter-ego. Lights are dimmed, candles are set and lit, and fine wine glasses replace the tea cookie displays.
When the garage door lifts at 8:00, couples and families converge into the space and begin mingling and slowly devouring bite-sized gateaux. For the next two and a half hours, customers will “make themselves at home and experience something creative and whimsical,” said Dave. Indeed, I thought, as I glanced around the room. The smiling, dessert-smudged faces cannot lie.
Photo: Courtesy of Amy Cao
How to get there: Take the F train from Manhattan. Exit Bergen Street. Walk 1 block North to Dean. Make a left to 68 Dean Street. Click the HopStop link below for directions from anywhere on Manhattan. Confection is Friday and Saturday 8-10:30. For other store hours and wholesale orders call or visit their website. (One Girl Cookies, 68 Dean St., Brooklyn, 212.675.4996, onegirlcookies.com)