New York Magazine’s Grub Street reported earlier this week that Levain bakery, an NYC institution known for hefty chocolate chip walnut cookies that are bigger than many burger patties, that D.C. is on the short list of markets to kick off a national expansion that could start next year. Boston and Chicago were the other two cities mentioned as “under consideration” for the company that routinely commands long lines for 6-ounce cookies. Stripes Group, a private equity firm that has invested in Blue Apron and Grub Hub/Seamless, is reportedly backing Levain now.
Started in 1996, Levain now has five locations in New York, including one on the Hamptons, with a sixth set to open soon. Eater’s Jenny Zhang describes Levain cookies as “textured, with incredible height and craggy peaks” and “melt-in-your-mouth delicious, easily breaking open to reveal deep pockets of liquid chocolate within a soft and tender interior.” Grub Street writes the “two-inch tall” treats have “redefined the idea of what a chocolate-chip cookie is or could be: not flat and smooth, but tall and craggy, with jagged, crisp-edged peaks; not soft and gooey in the middle, but supremely soft and gooey in the middle; not a snack, but a meal.”
Another renowned New York bakery, Mah-Ze-Dahr, has already announced plans to plant multiple locations in the D.C. area. [Grub Street]
New brew in Alexandria
Aslin Beer Company, one of the top players in Virginia’s craft beer scene, finally opened its new taproom in Alexandria. Northern Virginia Magazine reports that instead of buying to-go cans from its production facility in way-out Herndon, visitors to Alexandria can now sample from 24 taps. There’s also reportedly a food truck slinging Korean-style fried chicken sandwiches. [NVM]
D.C. is part of a new Mid-Atlantic whiskey trail initiative, joining forces with Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh to promote craft distillers. DCist reports that Destination D.C., the city’s official marketing arm, helped organize the Whiskey Rebellion Trail. People can buy different “passports” to get tastings at a number of distilleries. A $39 day pass in D.C. buys tours and vouchers at Cotton and Reed, New Columbia Distillers, One Eight Distilling, and Republic Restoratives. [DCist]
Popville has spotted signage for an Eat Well Juice Bar that looks close to opening on Georgia Avenue NW right across the street from Howard University. [Popville]