Warning: These doughnuts will self-destruct.
After the End Times, when only cockroaches and unfrozen gas station doughnuts remain, the ethereal creations at YoYo Donuts & Coffee Bar will be long gone. Actually, they'll be long gone in 48 hours. That's because YoYo uses no dough extenders or preservatives. You can resurrect the doughnuts the next morning with maybe a 10-second jolt in the microwave, but you probably won't have them sitting around that long anyway. With its unique flour blend and a creative array of toppings, YoYo is squarely in the conversation for best doughnut in the Twin Cities.
The store opened in September and is humorously located between a Snap Fitness and a Seattle Sutton's. Owner Chris Moquist recalls doughnut shops in the metro giving way to bagels during the '80s. Despite its short-lived tryst with Krispy Kreme, the Twin Cities was sorely in need of a good doughnut, and Moquist has certainly delivered. He has YoYo currently operating on one baking shift per day, which could mean upwards of 70 or 80 dozen doughnuts. A Dogwood Coffee outpost offers a quality counterpart to the doughnuts. Chocolate lovers, take note: The house chocolate blend makes for a rich and intense mocha.
YoYo's doughnuts stand out due to the unique taste of their dough. The raised doughnuts are made from a mix of less-refined wheat flour, barley flour and potato flour, giving them a hearty, substantial flavor. Moquist lifted the potato flour idea from his family history. "When my father grew up, they had a Spudnut franchise on the front of the creamery that my grandfather owned," he says. "He always said those were the best doughnuts ever. This was a small town in South Dakota, and they'd go through a ridiculous number of doughnuts every day."
Moquist's doughnuts have raised similar buzz so far and have been just as appreciated for what they don't contain: trans-fats, peanuts or tree nuts. "It's a huge thing," he says, "seeing kids come in here who have never eaten a doughnut, being told they can have anything in the entire case." As a result, birthday gatherings have become regular occurrences.
YoYo's most popular doughnut, by a wide margin, is the maple bacon long john. The dough itself contributes equally to the doughnut flavor as the maple glaze and the thick slice of applewood smoked bacon, creating an undeniably delicious bite. "We had seen some place on the West Coast that had a cake doughnut with crumbled bacon bits," says Moquist. "We figured, 'Why not use a big piece of bacon?' It's the sweet/salty thing -- like pancakes, bacon and a little syrup, all in a portable device." It provokes reactions from skepticism to disgust, but only from those who haven't tried it. Regulars have even been known to buy it for those hesitating at the register.
For those not feeling adventurous on their first visit, Moquist advises that his classic glazed raised will stand up to anyone's. "You can just tell the difference in the doughnut," he says. "If you come out and try it, you'll be back. We know you'll be hooked."
Beer fans have something special to celebrate: the five-year anniversary of award-winning local beermakers Surly Brewing. And they have a slew of ways to celebrate, too -- the brewery is hosting 15 events over the next few weeks. For a full schedule, visit www.surlybrewing.com.
- The Heavy Table team writes about food and drink in the Upper Midwest five days a week at www.heavytable.com.