Dessert Detectives: Nox Cookie Bar

Reviewing Nox’s popular menu items

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Krish Dev

The storefront of Nox Cookie Bar in downtown San Jose.

Krish Dev and Jefferson Le

Alphabetically, El Estoque’s Dessert Detectives take on a new case at a bakery or café, trying to decipher the quality and cost of its most popular items. For the letter “N,” we visited downtown San Jose’s Nox Cookie Bar, a shop that specializes in making cookies and ice cream. The dessert shop is framed with large glass panels providing a clear look inside where fresh cookies are baked and served.

Big Regular Cookie, Chocolate Chip: $1.85

Chocolate chip cookie freshly baked and served in a wax paper bag 

9/10

The Big Regular Chocolate Chip Cookie was the highlight of the Nox Cookie Bar’s menu, with its perfectly thick and sweet dough. There was a generous portion of chocolate chips melted inside the cookie — each bite was gooey, sweet and piping hot. The cookie may be too sweet for some, but a drink can easily balance the extra sweetness. 

Nox’wich, Mint Chocolate Chip: $3.00

One scoop of mint chocolate chip ice cream between two small chocolate chip cookies, served in a cup

5/10

The Nox’wich was underwhelming — the ice cream was a meager scoop, and the two chocolate chip cookies were small. These cookies were notably colder and tougher than the Big Regular Cookie. The ice cream was mediocre with rock-solid chocolate chunks that were too hard to enjoy. The item wasn’t much different than any prepackaged ice cream sandwich, besides its higher price.

Noxbox: $8.50

A box of 12 small cookies, two of each flavor: chocolate chip, snickerdoodle, peanut butter, sugar cookie, oatmeal raisin and M&M

7/10

The chocolate chip cookie was identical in flavor and texture to the ones found in the Nox’wich. In fact, all of the cookies were cold, likely not baked fresh to order. The snickerdoodle had a chewy texture but lacked the cookie’s signature cinnamon spice punch, and the peanut butter cookie was extremely dry and tasted like a stale jar of peanut butter. The sugar cookie was sweet, but not too sweet, and had a soft texture — a stark contrast with the dry oatmeal cookie with sparing raisins. The M&M cookie was just a chocolate chip cookie with M&Ms instead of chocolate chips and tasted as such — nothing out of the ordinary. All in all, the box was a jack of all trades but a master of none.

Overall: 7/10

$$/$$$

Nox Cookie Bar is a unique store located next to a tram stop minutes from San Jose State University in the heart of downtown San Jose. The freshly baked cookies are superior to typical packaged ones, combined with a variety of ice cream options as well. The store may be small, but COVID-19 precautions are followed. Overall, Nox Cookie Bar is a great stop for a quick — but not extraordinary — bite and can easily satisfy dessert cravings.