It’s been almost three years since rumors of New York City-based Levain Bakery’s Boston expansion started swirling. Now, the popular chain — known especially for its rather hefty cookies — is finally opening here. It’ll debut at 180 Newbury St. in Boston’s Back Bay on February 19, 2022, Levain’s 10th location. (Most are in New York, but there are also two in the D.C. area. The company also ships nationwide and distributes mini versions of the cookies to the freezer section of many Whole Foods locations.)
It’s somewhat of a homecoming for Levain cofounder Connie McDonald, who spent some time living near Newbury Street in her school days. In 1995, she and Levain cofounder Pam Weekes opened their first bakery in New York, focusing on bread. Later, the duo, both competitive swimmers, came up with what they deemed “an ultimate chocolate chip walnut cookie” meant to help fuel them as they trained for a triathlon. They started selling it at the bakery, and now the six-ounce cookies, crisp on the outside and gooey on the inside, are what everyone thinks of when they think of Levain.
The original chocolate chip walnut cookies will be available, as well as Levain’s other four cookie flavors — try the dark chocolate chocolate chip — but there’s more to the menu, including loaf cakes, the aforementioned bread, sticky buns, and more. (It’s all being baked in-house, not shipped in from New York.) And the Newbury Street location gets its own exclusive treat: a cranberry oatmeal scone, featuring dried cranberries from New England.
To drink, customers will find typical cafe beverages, including coffee and espresso from Boston’s own Fazenda Coffee Roasters.
Levain’s Boston location will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., with a standing counter inside and limited patio seating outside (when weather permits). Opening day proceeds will be donated to Women’s Lunch Place, which supports local women experiencing hunger, homelessness, and poverty; beyond opening day, leftover products will be donated to nearby food banks via the Rescuing Leftover Cuisine organization.