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Build-Your-Own Ice Cream Cookie Sandwich Chain Baked Bear Arrives This Month

The San Diego-based brand debuts in North Bethesda on May 19

The Baked Bear is known for its build-your-own ice cream sandwiches.
The Baked Bear [Official photo]
Tierney Plumb is the editor of Eater DC, covering all things food and drink around the nation's capital.

Southern California ice cream sandwich maker Baked Bear is opening its first East Coast location this month at North Bethesda’s bustling Pike & Rose development.

The sweets shop, which got its start in a San Diego strip mall in 2013, plans to open on Saturday, May 19 at 929 Rose Avenue. The development has seen a surge of new arrivals lately, including bowling alley-meets-restaurant Pinstripes and team Cava’s new standalone eatery called Julii. Chain ramen bar Jinya, which announced its expansion plans last fall, is hoping for an “early summer” opening date of its new location within the same complex.

The Baked Bear, founded by childhood friends Rob Robbins and Shane Stanger, has been on a expansion kick as of late — adding outlets in Austin and other states. The new 900-square-foot location will serve fresh-baked cookies, doughnuts, and brownies combined with ice cream and assorted toppings. The West Coast brand also offers a rotating “cookie of the month;” look for Mexican hot chocolate in May, and Reese’s Cup cashew come June.

A Baked Bear spokesperson tells Eater no details are currently available regarding additional area locations. Others, however, are on the rise. Homegrown vendor Nicecream is opening a second location in Adams Morgan this summer, while cult bakery and soft serve slinger Milk Bar erects its biggest store to date in Logan Circle.

The grand opening party scheduled for 1 p.m. on May 19 at the new Baked Bear includes free ice cream sandwiches for the first 300 people in line plus other goodies.