Capitol Hill doughnuts (SEA)

This morning just for giggles I though I’d compare the two new doughnut shops on Cap Hill, General Porpoise and the new outpost of Mighty O.

My selection from General Porpoise was filled with blood orange marmalade ($3.85+ 10% service charge + tax = $4.69. We’ve entered the realm of $5 doughnuts, people! ). I opted for a vanilla-chocolate-coconut concoction from Mighty O, out the door for $2.50

The GP was light, so light as to be too light. Insubstantial. The dough collapsed to a thin layer around a whole lot of runny marmalade when bitten. When Bakery Nouveau makes paczki for Mardi Gras, they are a far better balance of lightness and substance. This reminded me of squishy white bread. That is not a compliment.

The Mighty O had a nice texture despite being vegan - not too dry or crumbly - but the doughnut itself was just kind of bland. Needed a little vanilla or just a pinch more sugar. Chocolate topping was of acceptable quality.

I can’t say I’m going to rush back for more of either, but if I had to choose a favorite I would have to go with the O because it wasn’t effing five bucks. Or just go to Top Pot instead!

While I generally support the restaurateurs adding a service charge to sit-down dining, I’m not sure I’m on board with a service charge for putting a pastry in a bag.

Anywho, that’s my report.

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We drove by Top Pot today and our 4 y.o. grandson quickly pointed out that it’s his (and his dad’s favorite) ! I had one Krispy Kreme our last trip here. They were what I was raised on so it’s kinda the gold standard for me :slight_smile: Bob almost gags over the intense sugar smell. He had one probably ten years ago and was NOT impressed.

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When Krispy Kreme first came to Seattle (2002 or 3?) I tried one to see what all the fuss was about. Pretty amazing when warm from the fryer, but then what isn’t? Otherwise a sugar bomb. And Top Pot is kind of a gut bomb in it own way, but I think doughnuts should have an element of “why didn’t I stop at one?”

I’m not a huge doughnut fan, it’s just that I passed through SODO too early for Macrina, didn’t feel like giving Ines my money, and Amandine just doesn’t seem to have anything that calls out to me in the case when I pop in. I guess I should try their macarons but most macs are too sweet. And theirs are $3. $5 doughnuts, $3 macarons, no wonder people keep telling me to charge more for my goodies!

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My 50 year high school reunion was last summer. Our AirBNB condo was right next door to the original KK. Hot and dripping sugar right off the conveyor belt! But I totally get that being “to the manor born” makes a big difference.

I have mixed feelings about the General Porpoise donut- they always seem a little oily, and not in a good way. The texture can be quite nice though- fluffy with a little bit of chew and the almost-savory flavor of a well developed yeasted dough. And the fillings are spectacular- I had a blood orange marmalade donut last week, and the tartness of the filling was nicely balanced by the granulated sugar coating. $4+ / donut seems a little steep, but I’d guess that the majority of the cost is in the filling (have you priced out tart cherries lately? whoa!).

If I had to choose, I’d go for a Top Pot or Family Donut old-fashioned over a GP donut, but I’ll pretty much eat any donut that is in front of me.

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I found little chew or flavor to the dough, and mine didn’t seem oily at all. But yes, making the fillings instead of scooping goo out of a bucket would definitely add to the cost, both ingredients and labor. I haven’t bought sour cherries lately but you’re right, there are less expensive ingredients, especially the ones that grow here and are in season. Rhubarb, anyone? (There is a short season for local sour cherries, it’s possible that the restaurant group bought and preserved a load last summer.)

I had the vanilla custard GP recently and I thought it was fantastic-the best donut I’ve ever had. Mine didn’t get flat at all, like the one pictured.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold