Friday, June 5, was a favorite Lilja staff holiday: National Donut Day. That’s right – a day is dedicated to our favorite tasty pastries! Last year we ate an entire box of donuts (purely for the purpose of scientific research, of course).
This year we decided to up the ante and hold a taste test – a “donut off” – between two donut shops, Glam Doll and YoYo Donuts. We bought a dozen pastries, six from each location. Staying true to tradition, we ate them all. And because we didn’t want our calorie consumption to be for naught, we’ve put together a report of our findings to help others make smart donut choices.
We decided on six categories for our taste test: Maple Bacon, Apple Fritter, Raspberry, Chocolate Bismarck, Donuts You’d Eat With Coffee, and the Wildcard.
In the interest of journalistic integrity, only two staff members were aware of which donuts came from which location. Our waistlines have suffered horribly, but it was worth it. Below are our results. No need to thank us – our dentists will do that on our next visit.
YoYo – WINNER
We felt a “strong preference” for this donut, as it was more maple-y flavored than the other. There was, however, good bacon flavor in both.
The Showgirl. Paula Deen would love this one, as you could taste the butter in the frosting (which is both good – yummy! – and bad – think of the calories!). The cake part was on the salty side.
This pastry was kind-of soggy, tasting undercooked and doughy. Also, the glaze was a bit too sweet. It wasn’t horrible, but perhaps we got a bad batch? Or, we concluded, “Maybe the ‘B’ team baked this one.”
GlamDoll – WINNER
The PinUp Girl. Tastes like fall. With bursts of apple and the definite flavor of nutmeg, biting into this donut was akin to jumping into a pile of leaves and carving pumpkins.
This donut was much too sugary and sweet – especially compared to the (incomparable) Femme Fatale. Its jelly filling was not nearly as refreshing as the raspberry puree of its competition, and the oats on the top were rather hard.
Glam Doll – WINNER
Femme Fatale. There was an audible and resounding “ooh” when everyone took their first bite. It was described as “feeling like you’re biting into a handful of fresh raspberries.” We loved it. There’s no comparison. This was definitely the overall winner.
While the presentation of the donut was nice, the cream in the middle tasted too much like Jello pudding, with not enough natural vanilla flavor. It was not extraordinary.
*JFK wouldn’t want to be one of these berliners… Can we combine the two – take the good parts from each one and make a whole new donut? NO WINNER
Dark Angel. The pasty was flakier than YoYo’s, and the chocolate was good. The filling, however, tasted bitter or sour. (Or perhaps it was the dough itself.) This was the opposite of its too-sweet counterpart.
Donuts You’d Eat With Coffee
YoYo red velvet donut – WINNER, SORT-OF
The icing had a unique flavor, not cream cheese like you’d expect with red velvet. After a bit of concentration, we identified anise, and decided the icing tasted like black licorice; it overpowered the cake portion. In short, this did not taste anything like red velvet. A red velvet supporter’s thoughts: “If I were going for red velvet, I’d be disappointed.” On the other end of the spectrum: “I don’t like red velvet, and I liked this.”
Varga Girl. It was lacking the almond flavor we expected and almost tasted burnt. We weren’t huge fans.
YoYo old fashioned donut with lemon frosting
While the donut smelled delicious, it tasted very lemon-y. The lemon flavor was almost too strong for some, and after experiencing an interesting aftertaste, we deduced there must be lemon zest in the frosting. The cake part of the donut itself was salty. We were torn between really liking it and really not liking it.
Night Moves. This was a very interesting donut. The cake part, which had a good texture, was like a spice cake, but with a unique flavor. One of the listed ingredients was blackberry Hennessey, and we want to know where the cognac was – in the glaze or the cake?
Now excuse us while we go brush our teeth and hit the gym.