Photo: Cookie Bar
After closing its location near DePaul in December, Cookie Bar (1746 W. Wilson Ave., 773-334-0300) is a snap away from reopening in Ravenswood—waiting for the high sign from the city—with a kitchen almost three times as big and a new orientation as 100 percent gluten-free.
Jeff Steinberg, a partner, says the gluten-free part of the business became so popular that they couldn’t ignore how underserved the market was. The new Cookie Bar will produce cakes, breads, bars, and crackers in addition to the cookies promised by its name, using higher-protein flours such as amaranth, quinoa, sorghum, and teff instead of potato flour, a common gluten-free choice that can produce starchy, heavy pastry. “These [flours] are healthier, and it ends up tasting a lot better,” Steinberg says.
Of course, these flours aren’t cheap. Steinberg estimates that a 50-pound bag of wheat flour costs $16 wholesale, as compared with $28.75 for just six pounds of amaranth flour at one online retailer. Cookies will cost about $2 and brownies $2.75. For another diet-limited customer base, vegan items will also be available.
Crusty breads to come, Steinberg hopes. “We don’t have that yet,” he says. “That’s the holy grail that literally no one has perfected.” On, Lancelot.