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Restaurant Review: The Little Donut Shop

Miriam Bowers Abbott Miriam Bowers Abbott Restaurant Review: The Little Donut Shop
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The Little Donut Shop makes one basic type of donut, then frosts it with lots of different stuff.

This business plan shouldn’t work. Sure, it’s efficient, but the eating public likes variety: mix it up with some fruity flavors (apple or blueberry), some chocolate stuff or sour cream. People love those extras in their donuts.

But in spite of being a die-hard fan of traditional selections, dang it all, The Little Donut Shop feels like a winner in its own new league.

It helps that the basic donut is very high quality. It’s a cake donut, super fresh, with a distinct, lovable, fair-fried taste to it. It’s also a little smaller in diameter than a standard donut, it’s denser, and more lushly topped.

That means it’s close to being a candied donut, so be warned that a couple of these for breakfast will wreck your productivity. Anchor them with milk or cheese or SOMETHING to offset the massive amount of sugar that is headed directly to the bloodstream from an empty tummy. The crash afterwards is debilitating.

True, the Bacon Donut has protein, it’s not going to be enough to balance out the sugar. The frosted donut is crowned with a perfect dense shield of crackling briny bacon bits. Each one imparts a little smoky flavor and crunchy texture to the sweet fried donut.

A surprise favorite was the Fruity Pebbles Donut. What possible purpose could breakfast cereal serve on a donut -outside of lifting the RDA and being cutesy? There’s a really good answer to that question. Fruity pebbles is crunchy, and it has a pronounced citrus accent. Crunchy, citrusy, frosted donut is a total win.

And then there are chocolate things. First of all, bad news for Girl Scouts: The Little Donut Shop’s got you beat at your own game. The Samoa Donuts are beyond perfect. Here’s the reason why, those sneaky little sales girls have been using faux chocolate (sans cocoa butter) for years. That’s why the cookies don’t taste the same. When those Samoa cookies go up against a donut that’s smothered in intense chocolate fudge stuff, with some extra toasted coconut and caramel: it’s game, set, match.

How ’bout that glossy Chocolate Donut, topped with two delicate, crossed pretzel sticks? It looks all chic, but then the chocolaty-ness of the topping just leads to a binge-binge-binge.

And then there’s the streusel items, donuts topped with clotty bits of sweet powder that mixes with toppings stripes such as strawberry or chocolate: very worth eating.

The donut stop even has kid-stuff options such as Birthday Cake Donut or one with a gummi worm crawling out. And for adults, there’s the option to wash it all down with some Peet’s coffee. There’s also a cooler that dispenses some other beverages, such as milk.

It’s $10 for a box of twelve, so bring a twenty and buy a couple dozen donuts and bring ‘em someplace to share. The donuts are beautiful, and people think it’s breakfast-food, so they dig right in. The Little Donut Shop has been serving since September at 1716 N. High. Its daily hours, as posted, are 9am until 4pm.

For more information, visit www.littledonut.com.

Photos by Mollie Lyman of www.fornixphotography.com.

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7 Responses to Restaurant Review: The Little Donut Shop

  1. stephentszuter
    stephentszuter February 26, 2014 9:35 am at 9:35 am

    I try to get up to campus every Saturday morning just for this place…it’s so much delicious. Their hours are difficult to pin down, but if they’re open when you’re there, it’s so tasty.

  2. BreakfastwithNick
    BreakfastwithNick February 26, 2014 10:49 am at 10:49 am

    I’m glad you had a good experience there, Miriam. When we first visited, a few things just didn’t quite click. The base donut was a little too sweet, and so the toppings turned the donuts into these overwhelming sugar bombs. While the maple bacon was good, but something tasted off about that samoa.

    That being said, the space and branding are really nicely done, and I’m always (always) willing to give a donut another try. And they didn’t have that fruity pebble donut when we visited…

    Thanks for the write-up!

  3. Walker Evans
    Walker February 26, 2014 11:36 am at 11:36 am

    I love the concept and the decor of the space. Would be great to see a second location Downtown. ;)

  4. stephentszuter
    stephentszuter February 26, 2014 5:24 pm at 5:24 pm

    Yeah I think because they’re on campus, they tend to operate on campus hours…probably makes sense on weekdays, but not necessarily on weekends. I’d love to see a downtown location…

    To the sugar-overload comment, I’d add that they compliment the acidity of coffee… :)

  5. EricSellsHomes February 26, 2014 5:55 pm at 5:55 pm

    Great Donuts!

  6. Jcputerbaugh February 27, 2014 3:54 pm at 3:54 pm

    These donuts sound delicious! Work an 8 to 5 job and want to take donuts to your beloved coworkers as an excuse to pick one up for yourself? Well, apparently that’s not an option.

  7. Zeppo
    Zeppo March 3, 2014 4:50 pm at 4:50 pm

    Yeah a donut shop that opens at 9 am is a bit problematic. Time to make the donuts earlier !

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