Dear Mr. Gold:
I have a craving for a doughnut. I've had good doughnuts in Los Angeles, but is there a truly great doughnut? I hate that I can't hate on NYC doughnuts, but I had the tres leches donut at Doughnut Plant, and that was dddd-licious! I tend not to love sweets, but the Homer Simpson in me begs to differ! Mmmmm, doughnuts.
Dear Mr. G.:
The Doughnut Plant? Don't they charge, like, $7 for a cruller and have weird flavors with carrots and stuff? Isn't it big in Japan? I mean, sure, dulce de leche has its place in a freshly made churro, which you can find at any number of places on the Eastside here, but it's hard even to imagine a tres leches doughnut, which if properly done would be sogged out with milk hours before you even got around to dunking it in your coffee. It is not wise to mock the laws of the universe.
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Did you manage to make it to the doughnut wall that Jennifer Rubell erected for Fallen Fruit Day at the L.A. County Museum of Art? It was kind of awesome, really, more than a thousand doughnuts hanging from nails arranged in a long grid, even if the doughnuts themselves reputedly were from Yum Yum. Doughnut art is something we can get behind. And you did miss out on the recent doughnut renaissance, when every pastry chef worth her blowtorch plopped her version of $10 doughnuts on the menu right next to the Kaiserschmarren and the butterscotch budino, but this is still a pretty great doughnut town.
Those maple-bacon doughnuts at the Nickel? Some people worship them like holy relics. The plain doughnuts at Bob's Coffee in the Farmers Market? The purest imaginable expression of the form, an honest, unfancy doughnut that tends to dominate Best of L.A. We've written a lot here about the Donut Man in Glendora, who is worshipped for his fresh strawberry doughnuts in season but makes great crullers and tiger tails, too. Primo's on National at Sawtelle is fairly awesome, especially the crumb doughnuts. I'm not a Stan's fan, but they're beloved, too.
Want something highbrow? Try the mighty Portuguese malasadas at Natas Pastries in Studio City. They're filled with custard, you could eat a million of them, and you get to gripe about how they're not as good as the ones you had on the Big Island on your last surf trip. Mission accomplished.
NATAS PASTRIES | 13317 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks | (818) 788-8050