For the past few weeks I’ve been hearing stories of wondrous, fresh-baked cookies in Gyeongnidan, but not being six years old, or American, I gave them short shrift. There’s plenty of eclairs and macarons in that overpriced area already, I thought, so who cares about somebody churning out chocolate chip cookies? Cookies are for kids. Right?
What an idiot I am. Having visited twice this week already, I’m fighting the urge to stop typing this blog post and head straight back to CR8 Cookies for the third day running, because it really is wonderful and everyone should go there and make its owner rich and famous.
[Note: No money, free food or other inducement was asked for or received in return for this post. Soju Sunrise accepts freebies only very occasionally and will always explicitly state if this is the case.]
Such is the skill and charm of the young owner Ellie that I can even forgive the slightly annoying name (which is too close to Cristiano Ronaldo’s stupid “CR7” trademark for comfort). Tucked into an alleyway off the main Gyeongnidan-gil thoroughfare, it’s a funky little shop which keeps the cuteness and pinkness just the right side of sickly sweet for this crusty old ajosshi.
Cookies are made throughout the day, and while there’s usually a small stock on display ready for you to snap up, the best strategy is to wait for a fresh batch to come out of the oven. The scent of baking is divine – good grief, listen to me, but I swear it’s true – and waiting for them to cool down sufficiently to eat is a sweet torture.
There’s several varieties on offer depending on when you visit. They’re all mindblowingly good. Really, I don’t have the vocabulary to describe how good they taste fresh out of the oven; they are preposterously, sumptuously, scrabjously, hyperbrilliantly good. They are the reason that dewy-eyed youths write sonnets, the reason birds chirp cheerfully in the trees. They are proof that a loving omnipotent God exists and wants us to be happy. Did I mention that I liked the cookies?
I had a almond and white chocolate chip cookie. It was very very good.
I had a coconut and chocolate chip cookie. It was very very good.
I had an M&M cookie. Frankly all the cookie flavours blend into one glorious cookie experience at this stage, so maybe I’m getting all these wrong. Anyway, it was very very good. They add the M&M’s at the end to retain the crunchiness – a nice detail, I thought.
I had a peanut butter and jelly cookie. It was so good that I wanted to cry. I think maybe I did cry. Fuck you, why can’t a man cry? Don’t judge me.
I got a hot chocolate. The chocolate was as hot and sweet as a first kiss, topped with homemade marshmallows that Ellie singed with a blowtorch in front of me. If I were twenty years younger and thirty kilos lighter I would have asked her to marry me on the spot.
I got a latte. It didn’t make me cry or propose marriage, but the mug did make me laugh. I also got a nice cup of tea on the house, which is always welcome to any Brit.
It should be noted that these cookies are softer and less crunchy than some people like them. They fold and break rather than snap. They are made with premium ingredients – unbleached flour, Belgian chocolate and so on. Most are priced at 1,900 won, though a couple are more expensive.
Cookies can be ordered to go, packaged up in cute little beribboned boxes naturally, and even delivered if in sufficient numbers. There’s a 5% discount on orders of more than 12. As well as cookies and hot chocolate, they have cold brew coffee and lemonade, which I haven’t had but which you just know will be great. They even have milk.
In a world full of stress, horror and orange-faced, hate-spewing billionaire fascists, CR8 is a little oasis of calm and peace that I heartily recommend to everyone. Their cookies will make you happy and the service will make you smile, the sort of place you look forward to coming back to even before you’ve left the first time. Go.
- Category: Dessert / coffee
- Price: $$$$
- Must try: PB&J cookie (1,900 won)
- Subway: Noksapyeong Station (녹사평역) exit 2
- Directions: CR8 is in a small alleyway just off Gyeongnidan-gil. To get there, walk up from Noksapyeong station exit 2, cross under the road at the underpass, and then walk up the road past Caffe Pascucci until you see Namsan Chemistry (the big open-fronted beer place) on your left and the ridiculously-named Nice to Meatball on your right. CR8 Cookies is in the little alleyway on the right just before Nice to Meatball.
- Hours: 11am to 9pm, seven days a week.