“Ich bin ein Berliner”: Dublin’s Doughnut Obsession

Laura Brohan looks at Dublin’s latest obsession with doughnut shops, and offers advice on finding the city’s various sweet spots.[br]Dubliners’ infatuation with trendy baked goods runs deep. During the noughties, scrambling to match the success of cupcakes in cities like New York and London, Dublin was saturated with cupcakes. Cupcakes were nostalgic, reminding us of fairy cakes at primary school birthday parties. They also represented an image we wanted to emulate – Carrie Bradshaw at Mongolia Bakery living a glamorous, fast-paced, cosmopolitan lifestyle.After a while, the attraction of cupcakes faded. They became ubiquitous and started to seem plain, prim and proper. Doughnuts offer the perfect antidote to the noughties’ cupcakes. Hearty and irreverent, doughnuts are indulgent and fun. They taste every bit as good as they look on Instagram.Doughnut shops have been popping up around town in recent months. This wave of doughnut shops comes with a heavy dose of personality.
The quality of the baked goods on offer in Dublin sets our shops apart from doughnuts found in chains overseas or in the aisles of big supermarkets.
Dublin’s doughnut shops offer deliciously satisfying gourmet doughnuts without an artificial aftertaste. They are sweet and decadent without being sickly. This justifies the price tag attached to the doughnuts currently available, with most offerings coming in at around €3. Generally, the bigger the box of doughnuts you purchase, the cheaper they are per unit (as if you needed an excuse to buy a bigger box). The freshness of the doughnuts in Dublin also means that they sell out extremely fast so if you’re eyeing up a certain flavour, be sure to hit your chosen doughnut destination early in the day.So where can the best doughnut shops in the city be found?Offbeat Donut CompanyOne of the newest doughnut shops in the city centre is the Offbeat Donut Company. The shop is located just beside Pearse Station, which is fitting considering the doughnuts on offer are worth the risk of missing your train. In terms of variety, this shop takes the crown. Their selection ranges from chocolate in the form of the Cookies & Crème and Nutella Ring doughnuts to lighter delights such as the Lemon Meringue doughnut. The Ferrero Rocher flavour is a must-try doughnut to make your commute home infinitely more pleasant. Offbeat’s doughnut boxes also deserve a mention, as they make a box of doughnuts an ideal gift alternative to a box of chocolates. The Rolling DonutThe Rolling Donut’s kiosk has long been a Dublin staple, sitting inconspicuously on O’Connell Street. The recent opening of their doughnut shop on Bachelors Walk cemented the rising status of the doughnut in Dublin’s vibrant foodie scene. The Rolling Donut brilliantly combines years of heritage with the new breed of gourmet doughnuts. Its long history in the city is heavily reflected in their selection, with doughnuts including “Molly Malone” with its tasty, humble apple filling and “The Dub”, a delicious chocolate doughnut with a rich custard cream filling. Aungier DangerAungier Danger on Aungier Street opened last October, flooding Instagram feeds with its Brooklyn-inspired interiors, neon lights and, of course, its dangerously delicious doughnuts. The shop’s brilliant name plays into the names of the doughnuts on offer with gems including “Crime Scene” (red velvet) and “Banoffee Autopsy”. It has gone from strength to strength since it opened. In less than a year, Aungier Danger has opened a second shop in Arnotts, following the resounding success of its pop-up shop there. Aungier Danger’s limited edition doughnuts set it apart from its competitors. One of its most recent and most popular limited edition doughnuts was its Repeal the 8th doughnut. The heart-shaped red velvet doughnut borrowed its design from the now removed ‘Repeal the 8th’ mural in Temple Bar. Aungier Danger is truly a must-visit shop for doughnut lovers. The Dublin Doughnut Co. The Dublin Doughnut Co. can be found popping up at the Bernard Shaw Flea Market on Saturdays. The flavours in the fillings vary on a weekly basis so you’ll never tire of its offerings. Some of its past highlights include a divine salted caramel doughnut and a scrumptious Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup doughnut. If you can’t wait until a Saturday to get your hands on one of their tasty treats, their doughnuts are also stocked in a small number of cafes in the city centre on Thursdays and Fridays, including the 147 Deli on Parnell Street and the Dublin Barista School on South Anne Street. The Dublin Doughnut Co. is the best spot for lazy Saturday mornings.The popularity of gourmet doughnut shops in Dublin shows no signs of slowing down and for good reason. Doughnuts are the perfect sweet treat to brighten your day. Here’s hoping Dublin’s go-to doughnut destinations become a permanent fixture of the city.