If you have been following the Craft Donut scene you are aware that places like Donut Bar exist, but finding them can be a challenge. Not everyone has the street cred of VooDoo Doughnuts in Oregon where the phenomenon of the crazy pastry was conceived.
There have been many of these shops pop up and fizzle out as quickly as they were born. There was the short lived life of Devilicious Donuts, who quickly grew to two stores and then collapsed in a blink of an eye, and there is Psycho Donuts who hangs on to their heyday, but has had no real creative energy for almost a year now.
Donut Bar is the polar opposite of these places! It came on the scene strong,
and has exploded with success ever since the first line formed. If you are in San Diego, make a trip to the Gaslamp to visit this small, eclectic house of sweet delights!
Like everyday, there was already a line at 8am. It's Saturday morning people, why are you not asleep? I was doing my usual, trying not to wake my wife while escaping the hotel room for an early morning exploration of the area. An eight block walk to the Donut Bar seemed like just to right thing to get the blood sugar flowing.
There was an excitement on the street as the pastry chef came out with a tray of what looked like Monsters Inc themed donuts to hand out for free to the children in line, some were elated, others terrified! Most were amused. The line not so bad yet, would grow to mid block by the time I got out. They are obviously doing something right here, and I'm happy to find out what that is for the rest of you.
So lets talk donuts; for the sake of this report I chose seven donuts. Don't try this at home people, I am a trained professional with many years of donut experience under my belt. I wouldn't want anyone to get hurt!
Creme Brulee: This is a small but powerful donut. It is yeast raised and filled with a vanilla custard, and topped with a caramelized sugar topping. The donut is light and fluffy, and the filling is wonderful, and while liked the donut overall, the sugar crunch was just a little heavy for me. If you are a creme brulee fan and love the crackle of the topping, this is your donut for sure!
Cro-Bar: They had several flavors of Cro-Bar, San Diego's answer to the
Cronut. Does anyone even remember what a Cronut is? We have a really short attention span don't we? This is a pretty great pastry, topped and filled with a fluffy cream filling and topped with a dulce de leche caramel, this bad boy will get your sweet tooth singing!
Strawberries and Cream: A strawberry cake donut, with a cream cheese frosting and strawberry pop rocks! I really liked this donut. The strawberry cake was incredibly moist and intensely flavored. The frosting was cheesy and the popping candy added a cool layer of texture.
The Salted Caramel & Nutella: I'm putting these two together because they are very similar donuts. If you want basic iced donut these are just fine. They are HUGE, about three times the size of a regular raised donuts. I didn't really get salted caramel, or nutella flavors from them, but they are exceptional, fluffy raised donuts.
Apple Fritter: This is a great fritter! Lots of fruit, a nice icing, and you get the crispy, crunchy bits that you love, without the cloying sweetness of the usually glazed globs of sugar. This is a fritter done right.
There are tons of other donuts to choose from at Donut Bar; the Homer, the Elvis, Big Poppa, Root Beer Float and so on into infinity! The products these guys are putting out are top notch. If you are in San Diego and you don't mind standing in line for some tasty sweetness, Donut Bar is your
631 B St, San Diego
18011 Newhope St, Fountain Valley