Sugar Rush: Apricot Cardamom Doughnut from Dynamo Donuts, San Francisco
I thought that I was going to write about the Bacon Maple Apple Donut. I love everything listed in its name, and it's fall (aka the perfect time to eat maple-apple anything). In addition, this particular doughnut has become the icon for Dynamo, gracing all kinds of "Best of SF" lists. Alas, it was not to be.
If only I had known that the pieces of apple and bacon that top the doughnut are sautéed in bacon fat, I may have reconsidered—but probably not. I had to actually try the thing, to get punched in the face with a blast of porky fatty flavor to think, "Nope, not for me." The doughnut tastes like somebody used it to wipe the remains of the bacon off their breakfast plate. I understand that this might sound good to some people, but it just doesn't appeal to me.
Luckily I had purchased a backup doughnut, a doughnut that I absolutely love and yet have never written about, assuming (sometimes wrongly) that there are other, flashier doughnuts to spotlight. The truth is it's a pretty unique flavor when you consider that most people in the US don't regularly consume cardamom.
The Apricot Cardamom Donut is a great example of why that should change. It's such a particular flavor—sweet yet piney, earthy with wisps of ginger and cinnamon. Cardamom is a strong spice and given that its in both the dough and the glaze, it overpowers this doughnut. The apricot is there in small chunks, and when you get a bite, it's a pleasant, complimentary honeyed flavor. But the truth is this is more like a cardamom glazed cardamom doughnut, and that's totally fine by me. Worth noting is the doughnuts texture, which is soft and pillowy, compressing and deflating under your teeth like a good yeast doughnut should.
Dynamo doughnuts range from $2 to $3.50—in other words, not cheap. In the future, I'll probably still occasionally dabble in new flavors, but I'll consider this a "backup doughnut" no more.