Daily Dozen Doughnut Company
93 Pike Street at Pike Place Market, Seattle WA 98101 (map); 206-467-7769
"Where are the Daily Dozen Doughnuts?" Erin asked as we strolled through Pike Place Market. She pulled out the iPhone, but I sniffed the air and stopped her. I smelled the fabled mini-doughnut stand before I saw it.
"How are you?" we asked the punkish doughnut flipper behind the counter.
"Better, now that you're here."
"I'll be better, once I get half a dozen cinnamon doughnuts."
There are fresh doughnuts, and then there are doughnuts plucked from the fourteen-year-old Donut Robot Mark II before the conveyor belt tips them out. A toss in sugar, or sprinkles or cinnamon, and they're handed over the counter. Had they really finished draining? Perhaps not, but it was hard to mind. I'll venture the unscientific claim that about 50% of a doughnut's appeal is its proximity to the fryer. And these were as close as they come.
In under two minutes, the dough plops out of the ring mold, bobs down the hot oil bath, flips, and gets scooped into a bag as fast as it's bronzed. With a showy spin of the tongs, our doughnut flipper launched a seventh doughnut into the air; it flew in a graceful arc and landed, with a satisfying thwack, in the bag.
Moist, squishy, crunchy with sugar. On a cold, grey morning—and on the Seattle waterfront, your odds are good—bite into a doughnut, start to chew, and steam will pour from your mouth. We'd already eaten breakfast (in truth, we'd eaten two or three), but five of these doughnuts disappeared before we'd walked ten feet away.
A few stalls away, the salmon-tossing fishmongers were in the mood to heckle. "Are you taking pictures of your doughnuts?" they called. "Just eat the damn things." So we did.
Daily Dozen Doughnuts
93 Pike Street at Pike Place Market, Seattle WA 98101 (map) 206-467-7769