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Portland Cookie Review: Hilltop Coffee Shop

review by Biscuit Wakefield

Hilltop Coffee Shop
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip
$0.50 (baked the day before) + tax
hilltop_trio

Fellow gardeners know, all too well, the expression “The bloom is off the rose.” Comes a day when the air chills, the sky darkens, and your hard-tended beds let faded petals fall to the ground. Is it sad? Yes, a little. But we know this is Mother Nature taking her course. Beauty will spring again in the spring, which is why we call it spring.

Chocolate-chip cookies are another matter. Their life cycle is short and pronounced: one day past their prime and they may be downright inedible, which is nothing but a tragedy of poor planning. You should have gotten to them sooner. I thought about this rule when the young man at Hilltop informed me that the cookie I was about to consume was “day old,” even though he assured me it was “still pretty great.” He seemed trustworthy and I wanted to believe him.

This specimen was small, about two inches across, and closely resembled the cookies I make in my own kitchen. It was, I realized upon first bite, a peanut butter chocolate chip cookie. My assignment with this project was to review chocolate chip cookies, but purists – like chocolate chip cookies – are best dunked in a cold glass of milk.
Onward! Hilltop’s PBCCC contained a goodly amount of salt, which suits my personal taste, and despite its age the insides were wonderfully soft and chewy. However, the bottom was greasy and the edges ever so slightly sandy, two minor design flaws that I will blame on the peanut butter. And peanut butter, as you know, is delicious, as long as you are not one of those poor people who is allergic.

It was a good cookie. It was a good peanut butter cookie. Sadly, the chocolate chips were overwhelmed by the PB flavor. I found myself thinking about all that awful business with the salmonella in Georgia, not that Hilltop’s cookies have anything to do with that, but clearly the thing foremost in my mind was peanut butter… not chocolate
chips. I do feel this cookie would have been exceptional if it had contained a slightly higher chip-to-dough ratio. Or perhaps it would have been exceptional if I had gotten to it sooner. But the day previously I had been busy in my garden, with no time to purchase cookies, so there you have it.