Monday, November 5, 2012

doughnut vault

DOUGHNUTS or DONUTS? 

quite honestly, does it really matter? to me, either one spells deliciously fried sweetened dough formed in a shape of a ring (well, that's the shape we think of when we say doughnuts/donut). 

since we are on the subject, i read that basically doughnut is the british spelling while the americans have adopted the shorter word (doughnuts) -- similar to how they omitted all the 'u's in color and neighborhood

but i digress. 

the only donut/doughnut place i've known in chicago (and i mean them selling just donuts) is krispy kreme and there isn't even a fresh kripsy kreme bakery in downtown. 


well, that is true until the existence of doughnut vault! probably one of the first donut shops in chicago. i do love myself awesome donuts (okay, i've decided to adopt the american spelling despite how this place spells it) and was delighted that there were plenty of raves about this place -- so much so i've read that you have to be there really early because once they run out, they are done for the day which means sad panda for me. also,  queue times take about 30 minutes for donuts to-go. 

this queue was wrapping around the block AND
this was 15 minutes before the shop opens
located downtown chicago near streeterville, it is a petite shop with vintage fixings. kinda reminds me of a restored abandoned old school saloon but in a cool way. the shop could literally only fit a few people at a time. the main hues were blue, gold and white and they have a patio outside with a few tables for those who can't wait any longer to consume their donuts.  before you head out to be a part of the donut waiting game, make sure you know that doughnut vault is opened from tuesdays to fridays from 8am and saturdays from 9:30am. 




their menu is simple - they have the usuals and a special that varies each day throughout the week. best way to know what are available is to check via their website or twitter (@doughnutvault). usual suspects are gingerbread stack, buttermilk old fashioned, seasonal jelly donuts, and the trio of glazed donuts (chestnut, vanilla and chocolate). june 23rd (which was the day i was there) featured dreamsicle old fashioned donuts.

i dragged {cn} to this donut experience who had to wait with me for a long time for donuts but thank goodness her boyfriend is a huge fan of buttermilk donuts. oh, bear in mind that it's cash only


we had a donut filled day - in fact, too much donuts that i was quite sick of delicious rings for a few weeks. interestingly, most of the donuts at doughnut vault are cake donuts which are not a favorite of mine but i gave it a benefit of the doubt since a couple of other foodies i follow on twitter loves this place.


speaking of cake donuts - why the dislike? well frankly, i think cake donuts are really just cake batter shaped into rings before frying; hence i won't classify them as donuts. instead, i will called them cake  camouflaging as donuts.

and yes, i admit that i'm a through and through yeast donut advocate. on the other end of the spectrum, fans of cake donuts think yeast donuts have a off putting flavor from the yeast. so there, we're even! although i have to say, more recent donut events might have me be more receptive of cake donuts...

buttermilk old fashioned donuts ($2).


it seems like the buttermilk old fashioned donuts are their best seller and a big hit among the chicago-ans. and  with good reason. despite it being a cake donut, it is moist and a little crisp on the edges and somewhat ends up being in between a yeast and cake donut. not overly sweet and quite delightfully addicting.

gingerbread stack ($3)


so when they say stack - they meant three in one order. they are slightly smaller than regular donuts and are also under the cake donut category. i thought it wasn't all that moist with a hint of gingerbread with the usual accompaniment of cinnamon sugar coating. good balance of spices with decent texture but not to die for.

glazed donuts - chestnut ($3)


this probably doesn't do enough justice as to how huge this donut was. okay, lemme try to describe it in the best way i can: the donut was almost as big as a child's face - not kidding. perhaps 1.5 or twice the size of their regular donut. this was a yeast donut which i thought texturally was alright and the glaze had a very subtle chestnut flavor. not exactly memorable but was pretty good. i was already full halfway through the donut.

glazed donuts - chocolate ($3)


size-wise, it's just as huge as its glazed counterpart -- like really big! taste-wise, perhaps because i had it the next day, i thought it was a dry yeast donut which was quite a disappointment and the chocolate glaze was just okay - not chocolate-ly enough.  i suppose i just gotta learn how to not buy too many that it compromise the tasting experience.

jelly-filled donut - strawberry jelly ($3)


seasonal jelly it is, and strawberry was in season. texturally the donut wasn't great but the generous filling of jelly was pretty yummy albeit slightly too sweet, which surprisingly worked out rather well to compensate for the dry donut itself. so far, the yeast donuts from doughnut vault that i've tried hasn't exactly been their strong point.



dollar coffee ($1)


i never really thought much of dollar coffees - mainly because of my preconception that it might be watered down coffee but my, oh my.. how i've been proven wrong. i loved this iced coffee on a warm summer day which was much needed on an early saturday morning. the coffee was deliciously strong enough and there's syrup on the counter so you can add as much as you like. if you think you like starbucks coffee (not many people do, i know but it's my energy drink of choice since it was close to my office), i think you might like this a whole lot better. i'd say go for it if you are craving for coffee and on the fence.. plus, it's only a dollar! what do you have to lose?



i asked {cn} her thoughts on doughnut vault. i think we both came to the agreement that while the donuts were not bad, we cannot figure out the craze for doughnut vault that comes with the waiting in line for a long time. while my favorite is the buttermilk old fashioned donut which is rather shocking since cake donuts are not my thing, unfortunately doughnut vault won't be the first to come to mind if i have a hankering for donuts. 

doughnut vault | location
4o2 1/2 n. franklin st,
chicago, il , 60654  


{yummy-ness | 3 forks out of 5 }
{worth trying | dollar coffee . buttermilk old fashioned donut}

disclaimer this is written based on personal experience and opinion. experiences and taste buds may vary for others.

The Doughnut Vault on Urbanspoon

1 comments:

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