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Top Pick Of The Week

June 3, 2008

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Brownies

Aren’t you dying to take a bite? We’ve been biting for weeks! Photography by Claire Freierman.

WHAT IT IS: Moist, fudgy brownies.
WHY IT’S DIFFERENT: Not too sweet, just right.
WHY WE LOVE IT: The Mint Brownie is to-die-for for mint lovers. The Chocolate Chip and Toffee Brownies are equally welcome.
WHERE TO BUY IT: Buy Online Here.
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Geoff & Drew’s Brownies:
Melt In Your Mouth

CAPSULE REPORT: Often, people ask us to recommend brownies. We always ask about the recipient and the occasion. Some companies sell brownies in very nice packaging that are too sweet for the sophisticated palate. We’d send them to a kid, but not to a fine food enthusiast. Others, like the brownies made with Dagoba organic chocolate by artisan chocolatier Chokola'j, are very fine, indeed. But they are too elegant to snarf down at a picnic or barbecue, and too delicate for grab-and-go.

Enter Geoff & Drew’s. There are three flavors, each a variation on the same moist, fudgy brownie. Chocolate Chip is the most classic, Toffee has a subtle caramel topping and Mint will blow your socks off with a large chocolate peppermint pattie embedded in the top—a simple but brilliant idea and our favorite idea to borrow thus far this year. The caveat emptor on these brownies is that they melt in your mouth so easily that one brownie seems like only half a portion. To compensate, we drink an extra tall glass of milk with each. The brownies are individually shrink-wrapped for shelf life as well as easy grab-and-go. Take a closer look in the full review below. Caution: Photos may cause drooling.

     
THE NIBBLE does not sell the foods we review
or receive fees from manufacturers for recommending them.

Our recommendations are based purely on our opinion, after tasting thousands of products each year, that they represent the best in their respective categories.

 

Bake Your Own Brownies

Brownie Points Brownies The Ultimate Brownie Book
Brownie Points: Over 100 Outrageously Delicious and Easy Variations on North America’s Favorite Dessert, by Lisa Slater. Tested and proven, easy-to-make recipes for every imaginable kind of brownie delicacy, including muffins, cupcakes and cheesecakes. There are sugar-free and gluten-free recipes too, along with detailed discussions of baking methods and equipment. Click here for more information or to purchase. Brownies, by Linda Collister. Mouthwatering photography and foolproof recipes for a whole bakery full of brownies, Make everything from Peanut Butter to Chocolate Mint, Raspberry to White Chocolate, basic Brownie to Blondie. There also are brownie desserts like Brownie Cheesecake and Brownie Fudge Pie, plus an entire chapter of dessert sauces to pour over your brownies. Click here for more information or to purchase. The Ultimate Brownie Book: Thousands of Ways to Make America’s Favorite Treat, by Bruce Weinstein. Each recipe comes with a large number of suggested variations, both subtle and flavor-forward (toasted pepitas and chopped dried prunes in banana brownies, for instance). Some variations, such as Mexican Chocolate Brownies, are au courant, while Chile Brownies and Sweet Corn Brownies are cutting-edge. Click here for more information or to purchase.

 

Geoff & Drew’s Brownies: Melt In Your Mouth

INDEX OF REVIEW

MORE TO DISCOVER

Introduction

For a confection that’s been around for a scant hundred years, the brownie has certainly bonded with Americans. How many people have never baked a batch—even if only from a mix? Growing up licking the bowl from the brownie batter is a memory that many of us hold dear. Since its inception, the brownie has evolved from something with a light chocolate flavor, to recipes that can rival fudge for their dense intensity. (Read the history of the brownie for further enlightenment.)

There are many different brownie recipes, from a cake-like brownie ready for an à la mode scoop of ice cream, to a fudge-like death-by-brownie. There are fusion layered brownies (of which the cheesecake brownie, or zebra, is a favorite), and brownies with swirls, mix-ins or flavoring in everything from white chocolate to raspberry to peanut butter.

But at the end of the day, what most people want is a basic chocolate brownie. Carol Spickler, whose card reads “President and Chief Cookie Girl” of Geoff & Drew’s, has her finger on the pulse of what sells. The company makes a fudgy brownie that is deep in chocolate flavor and extremely moist. Yet, as with all great recipes, the richness is in balance: After our “standard portion” of two brownies, we never feel that we have over-indulged.

Toffee Brownies
Geoff & Drew’s toffee brownies have a caramel-like topping.

Brownie Varieties

Our advice: Try a sampler of all three. If you’re a mint lover, a supplementary box of mint is essential—they are pretty exciting stuff.

Mint Brownie
The best mint brownie we’ve ever had, thanks to the scrumptious peppermint pattie embedded in the top.

Chocolate Chip Brownie

At Geoff & Drew’s, this is “the basic,” although there’s nothing basic about it. Any brownie lover would be happy to receive a box. The brownie makes an excellent base for a brownie sundae, although so do its siblings. (See the photo at the top of the page.)

Mint Brownie

We’ve already said it but are happy to say it again: With the large mint pattie embedded in the top, this mint brownie rocks. The chocolate chips are almost gilding the lily—but leave them just where they are! (Photo at left.)

Toffee Brownie

This brownie trades the chocolate chips for a soft caramel topping. Toffee, which technically refers to a hard candy, is not an accurate description; but we’ll just shut up about that and eat the brownies. (See the photo above. You can also learn the differences between caramel, butterscotch and toffee.)

That’s this week’s Top Pick: short and sweet. With Father’s Day, graduation, summer camp and house gifts on your list, consider yourself armed and ready.

— Karen Hochman

FORWARD THIS NIBBLE to anyone who loves biscuits (is there anyone who doesn’t?).

GEOFF & DREW’S BROWNIES
Chocolate Chip, Mint & Toffee Brownies

  • 8 Brownies
    Choice Of Flavors & Box Colors
    $19.00
    Depending On Flavor
  • 16 Brownies
    Serves 16 To 20
    $36.00
    Depending On Flavor
  • Giant Chocolate Chip Brownie Heart
    3 Pounds
    $39.00

Purchase online* here.

*Prices and product availability are verified at publication but are subject to change. THE NIBBLE does not sell products; these items are offered by a third party with whom we have no relationship. This link to purchase is provided as a reader convenience.

Gift Box
The boxes are nice “keepers.” Tailor the color to the recipient. In addition to the colors above, there’s a bright red box.

 



Check Out These Other Top Pick Of The Week” Cookies & Brownies:

 

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