[Photograph: Max Falkowitz]

A humble shortbread cookie—at its simplest just butter, flour, and sugar—is a tough sell for bakeries that need to sell sweets as much on looks as honest flavor. Ovenly's solution is to add ground coffee beans and burnt sugar for a lovable shortbread with a neat, bitter upgrade.

The Stumptown Shorty ($2.75) use Stumptown coffee beans and nuggets of raw sugar that liquefy and sizzle as the cookie bakes. The sugar turns into a rudimentary caramel, and the beans add further textural interest alongside their nutty, roasted flavor.

What about the shortbread itself? Sandy and just a bit buttery. It's no slouch.

About the author: Max Falkowitz is the New York editor and ice cream maker in residence at Serious Eats. You can follow him on Twitter at @maxfalkowitz.



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