Tradition Meets Whimsy at Lucky's Doughnuts at 49th Parallel, Vancouver
As the story goes, the roasters at 49th Parallel in Vancouver have long liked doughnuts with their coffee. So they thought, why not make doughnuts ourselves, doing it simply and just as we desire? After two years of study and preparation, Lucky's Doughnuts was born, and 49th Parallel became a one-stop shop for doughnuts and coffee.
Sales are brisk, so doughnut availability can change quickly. With no basic old-fashioned to be found, I started with a Cinnamon Sugar ($2.75) to get a sense of Lucky's cake doughnut style. It has a good level of sweetness, and the doughnut has enough density to give it heft without being too heavy, which will please people who don't want one doughnut to feel like a meal. (Also pleasing me, knowing I had more to sample.)
Shifting to a classic yeast doughnut, I tried the Glazed ($2.50) next. This is my favorite of the group, as it's moist and almost "bready" inside, but still light and airy. With a light touch of vanilla in the glaze, this is an ideal doughnut to accompany a cup of coffee.
Staying yeasty, it was time to fill the hole and try a filled doughnut, so I selected a Lemon Bismark ($3.25). Covered with granulated sugar, this doughnut contains a generous amount of lemon curd that satisfied my desire for tanginess. Otherwise, the texture is similar to the glazed doughnut, albeit significantly more messy to eat.
With its interesting square shape, I couldn't resist a Root Beer Float ($3.50). There's root beer extract in the custard, which is piped into all four corners and oozes out with each bite. With Pop Rocks embedded in the glaze, this doughnut is a candy-like confection that had me licking my fingers like a child.
Lucky's Doughnuts (at Forty Ninth Parallel)
About the author: Jay Friedman is a Seattle-based freelance food writer who happens to travel extensively as a sex educator. An avid fan of noodles (some call him "The Mein Man"), he sees sensuality in all foods, and blogs about it at his Gastrolust website. You can follow him on Twitter @jayfriedman.