Reviews

We Read About BuzzFeed NYC’s Donut Crawl and Decided to Do One Ourselves

June 5, 2015

My friends and I are crazy. We read about BuzzFeed’s New York Donut Crawl, and when the writer was talking about how hard it was to finish it, we scoffed at the thought. 12 donuts only? Including some donut holes??? Please! I am a champion eater, and I read the article taking it as a challenge. We drew up our own map of the most well-known donuts and donut shops in Manhattan and established our rules—we needed to eat one donut at each place no matter how large or small, no lunch or snacks in between, and no puking to make for extra space. We thought we could survive, but I tell you, donut try this at home. Here is our attempt at finding the best donut in Manhattan.

1. Bouchon Bakery

bouchon

Flavors We Got:

Plain Glazed & Citrus

bouchon donut

Dough Verdict:

Bouchon served up good classic donuts, but they didn’t live up to their name. I expected lots more from a Thomas Keller Bakery, especially since they only served two kinds, but they were far from the best plain glazed donuts of my life.

Rating: 6/10

Bouchon Bakery

Address: 10 Columbus Ave, New York

2. Holey Cream

holey cream

Flavors We Got:

Plain Glazed with Fruit Loops and Long Island Raspberry Chip Ice Cream & Plain Glazed with Chocolate Drizzle, Oreos, and Mint Chip Ice Cream

holey cream donut

Dough Verdict:

Holey Cream had the most interesting concept: it was a DIY shop where you chose your own donut, toppings, and then ice cream. They make their donuts fresh everyday, which is true for most places, but these were probably the softest and most gigantic ones we had. It was only our second donut stop, but we felt like we were going to puke and break our rule, because Holey Cream puts not just 1, but 4 scoops of ice cream onto your dessert. Deadly.

Rating: 8/10

Holey Cream

Address: 796 9th Ave, New York

3. Sullivan St. Bakery

sullivan

Flavors We Got:

3 Bombolonis: Chocolate, Vanilla, and Seasonal Sweet Fruit Jam

sullivan donut

Dough Verdict:

Sullivan St. Bakery is known more for their breads, but they offer 3 bombolonis filled with chocolate, vanilla and fruit jam of whatever’s in season. They were good and fresh, but obviously not their specialty, as they were a bakery with donuts and not a donut shop. There wasn’t enough filling, but maybe they made it this way as the flavors were quite balanced.

Rating: 6/10

Sullivan St. Bakery

Address: 533 W 47th St, New York

4. Doughnuttery

doughnuttery

Flavors We Got:

Peach Sugar with Dried Rose Buds

doughnuttery donut

Dough Verdict:

Doughnuttery only offers mini donuts, at a minimum of 6, and they specialize in flavored sugars. They had the most interesting flavors, but were so disappointing as they all tasted like plain old granulated white sugar. They sounded so good and interesting, but they were a major letdown—dough was old, and especially since the donut was small, the old oil, old dough, and disappointing sugar were even more evident. It was not worth it being the only one in Chelsea Market. Skip it, seriously.

Rating: 3/10

Doughnuttery

Address: Chelsea Market, 425 W 15th St, New York

5. The Donut Pub

donut pub

Flavors We Got:

Plain glazed

donut pub donut

Dough Verdict:

If I’m not mistaken, it’s the longest-running donut shop in Manhattan, and it is open 24 hours. They are the best and cheapest classic donuts. Technically, it was here where we had the best plain glazed donut we had, and they were all made fresh in the back. Even though I only had the plain glazed, you could tell they were expertly made, beating all expectations from a mom-and-pop donut shop. 75 cents for a plain glazed? You kidding me bro, you kidding me. Proof that tradition beats all else.

Rating: 9/10

The Donut Pub

Address: 203 W 14th St, New York

6. Crave

Flavors We Got:

Plain Bomboloni

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Dough Verdict:

Hard. If I bit into one of those smiley stress balls, it would probably be softer. It tasted like nothing, just hard bread that was old. It wasn’t on our list at first but we needed to go to a shop to replace Balthazar so we needed to find a donut.

Rating: 3/10

Crave

Address: 545 6th Avenue, New York

7. Babycakes NYC

babycakes

Flavors We Got:

Samoa-Glazed with Coconut and Chocolate Sauce

babycakes donut

Dough Verdict:

Are vegan donuts an oxymoron? It sat at the bottom of our stomachs like a lead ball, and I struggled to finish it. The reason why it was heavy was because of all the types of flour they used, which made it a little too dry, like a sack of sand packed together. In spite of this, the flavors were super delicious, never too sweet, but you could tell a little too much that it was vegan.

Rating: 5/10

Babycakes NYC

Address: 248 Broome St, New York

8. Doughnut Plant

doughnut plant

Flavors We Got:

Mexican Mole Chocolate Cake and Tres Leches

doughnut plant donut

Dough Verdict:

Doughnut Plant seems to be the benchmark in New York. They had excellent cake donuts, but their yeasted donuts sucked and could get really oily. The flavors are amazing, but they’re not exactly the best donuts in town; if you go for what they’re known for, you’ll be really pleased, but that aside, they’re not my favorite in the city. Bonus: the staff are the most amazing people you’ll meet; they are interesting, awesome, and well-trained.

Rating: 8/10

Doughnut Plant

Address: 379 Grand St, New York

9. Dough

dough

Flavors We Got:

Hibiscus and Lemon Meringue

dough donut

Dough Verdict:

Dough would have to be my favorite donut place ever. Their donuts are incredibly huge, but they feel so light. It is the perfect texture—super soft, but without disappearing on your palate too fast. All the flavors were amazing, and so tasty—you got classics but interesting takes, too. The fruity flavors were an instant favorite.

Rating: 10/10

Dough

Address: 14 W 19th St, New York

10. Bottega Falai

bottega falai

Flavors We Got:

Chocolate Cream

bottega falai donut

Dough Verdict:

We got donut holes, which had the most most filling and were the opposite of stingy. At this point, we were so happy that they were just donut holes, because we wanted to die and had lost all self-respect. Maybe this was why we didn’t enjoy them so much.

Rating: 4/10

Bottega Falai

Address: 267 Lafayette St, New York

11. Pies and Thighs

pies and thighs

Flavors We Got:

Sourdough Donut

pies and thighs donut

Dough Verdict:

This was the most interesting donut to me; I’d never tried anything like this before. The nuances of sourdough were immediately present in the donut, and it was such a pleasure to the palate—sour and sweet, the perfect cross between my favorite bread and a good donut. It was kind of a revelation. To be clear, they weren’t the best we had on the crawl, but it was the only donut that was different enough to challenge my perceptions and taste.

Rating: 9/10

Pies and Thighs

Address: 43 Canal St, New York

Have you eaten at any of the doughnut places featured above? Which one did you like the most (or the least)? Tell us about your experience with a comment below!

This donut crawl was conducted solely by the author, who did not accept any form of cash advertising, invitation, sponsorship or payment. It was paid for by the author or Pepper.ph, and the views represented are purely the writer’s own.

4 comments in this post SHOW

4 responses to “We Read About BuzzFeed NYC’s Donut Crawl and Decided to Do One Ourselves”

  1. Katrina says:

    If there was a “bowing with two hands in the air in worship” emoji, I would use it here. I’ve been to Doughnut Plant, ordered two, and could only polish off one for breakfast. I had to save the 2nd one for a late evening snack. I can’t imagine having to eat twelve.

    The Brooklyn Blackout doughnut was quite good. I expected it to be overwhelming because of the 4 forms of chocolate on it, but I found it well-balanced. The Tres Leches was too sweet for my liking.

  2. Pierce Jonota says:

    Any suggestions for MNL Doughnut Crawl?

    • AC says:

      I clicked on this thinking that it was manila-based 🙁 a but disappointed but I hope they could make a Manila doughnut crawl happen!

  3. PJ says:

    Like AC, I thought your post would be more Filipino based. Despite the fact that I love in NYC myself, I wondered about the donut scene in Manila. I’ve had Dough plenty of times and could and could honestly say that it doesn’t even compare to J Co Donuts from Malaysia (which are available in Cebu and Manila). I guess I’m trying to say that you’re not missing out on Dough donuts; go straight to J Co.

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