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REVIEW w/ pics: The Donut Man in Glendora

pleasurepalate Sep 30, 2007 04:56 PM

When it comes to breakfast, I'm a savory kind of gal. Give me eggs, bacon and toast, but pancakes or waffles with syrup and fruit toppings are just not for me. Every once in awhile, I'll want a donut, but not very often.

One morning, my sweet tooth monster came out of its cave and demanded satisfaction. Who am I to say no? Since I hadn't made my way to The Donut Man before, I decided to check it out. Considering that I've driven as much as 40 miles to have ramen in Gardena, this will be my first time visiting the shop that has been the talk of the donut world and of donut lovers for years. With it being in the neighboring city of Glendora, it's amazing that I haven't visited sooner.

As I park my car, I notice right away that the shop is not very big and definitely has a 70's look about it. I step up to the counter to take a look at my donut options and I couldn't believe how huge some of these doughy concoctions were.

One could probably feed an entire family and their neighbors, too. I ended up getting five of them to take home and I think I spent about the equivalent for what I'd normally spend on a dozen donuts anywhere else. However, these were generous sized donuts and certainly looked unlike anything I'd pick up at my local Winchell's, so I was willing to pay more for uniqueness.

Knowing that these donuts would be pounced upon as soon as everyone woke up, I staked my claim on the peach donut. Looking at it, I wasn't quite sure how I was supposed to eat it. It kind of reminded me of Pac Man, except with a mouth full of peaches. I finally followed the knife and fork route.

I actually forked a peach first and found it to be very fresh tasting and I liked how the glaze gave the fruit just the right amount of additional sweetness. They key is definitely eating the fruit and the donut together because it's a great combination of textures and flavors. The sweet juiciness of the slightly firm peaches contrast well with the more thick cakey texture of the donut itself.

Even as good as that peach donut was, I just couldn't finish it. I ended up eating only half. This is definitely a breakfast better eaten by two or even three other people.

Although I was quite full, I did manage to tear off a piece of the Tiger Tail to sample, which is a long donut twisted with ribbons of chocolate. I felt that the texture was a little airier than that of the peach donut, which I actually preferred and of course, chocolate, whether in the AM or PM is always hard to resist.

Overall, I can see why The Donut Man is loved by so many. It certainly deserves its reputation.

To see pics, go to:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/la_addict/sets/72157602015294686/

The Donut Man
915 E Route 66
Glendora, CA 91740
(626) 355-9111

Thanks,
Abby
http://pleasurepalate.blogspot.com/

  1. p
    pinkshch Oct 3, 2007 01:22 PM

    After reading all these reviews, I decided to try this place out for myself. I went on Monday night, and unfortunately, peach donut season is over. I didn't see any of the tiger tails that were mentioned here, either. :(

    Disappointed, I ordered one of what they were making at that very moment - an orange donut. At first I thought it might have been pumpkin, but when we asked the young man working behind the counter, he said it was orange. So, that's all we got.

    Well, I'm sorry to say, but I did not enjoy it one bit. The frosting was so sweet that I almost choked. The whole donut itself wasn't that impressive either. It wasn't bad, but definitely nothing special. Maybe we just went on an off night, but I probably won't be back any time soon.

    3 Replies
    1. re: pinkshch
      b
      bulavinaka Oct 3, 2007 01:51 PM

      Don't know how close you are to the Donut Man, or how often you're by or in the area, but as others have mentioned it's worth a call if you plan on going. When one thinks about the complexities of what goes into not just one but many various types of donuts, it's no easy-do. I think they do certain things very well and some things kinda so-so. Their fruit-filled donuts (strawberry and peach) are only offered during those fruits' respective seasons. As mentioned, the tigertails, apple fritters, french cruellers and cinnamon rolls probably are the most notable outside of the fruit-filled donuts, but I also think their buttermilk bars are pretty good as well. I think you made a good choice of trying what they had just made as donuts have an effective shelf life of about half a day in general before they start to go south. Also, If you don't like sweet things, Donut Man may be a bit off-putting for you. Most donuts that are topped, glazed, or filled will start knocking out teeth of those who are the slightest bit shy about sweet. But if that's not the case and if you start out sticking with the items that get lots of mentions on this or any other posts about the Donut Man, I think you'll walk away with not only a smile on your face, but alot of gooey goodness on your mug as well.

      1. re: bulavinaka
        p
        pinkshch Oct 3, 2007 02:33 PM

        I'm about 15 minutes away from the Donut Man. Next time I'll be sure to call ahead so I can try a tiger tail or a buttermilk bar. Usually I love anything sweet, but something about that orange donut was just so, so wrong. Next time I'll be sure to stay away from anything named after a color of the rainbow, and stick to the other goodies that are mentioned here. Thanks. :)

        1. re: pinkshch
          ipsedixit Oct 3, 2007 03:32 PM

          Strawberry and peach are good. I also like the bear claws and buttermilk bars. In fact, I think they have the best buttermilk bars.

          This place is evil. I go there to pay homage only after a marathon.

    2. b
      bulavinaka Oct 1, 2007 12:39 PM

      I made a point of stopping by the Donut Man on the way to Vegas in August. It was about 7AM and that place was jumpin' like nobody's business, and I can totally understand why. Those donuts are amazing in just about every aspect. Our family of four ordered a dozen (the young lady who was helping us looked at me like I was crazy) for the ride over. The apple fritters, tiger tails and even the buttermilk bars were great (but my heart and tastebuds still tell me to give more love to Primo's on that one). But those peach donuts winked at me and it was all over. And I managed to eat it by hand (and alot maneuvering of tongue & mouth) while driving to Vegas, and by some miracle (and alot of slurping) not one slice of peach strayed away. Like Sauce sez, spring time is strawberry time for the Donut Man - I cannot wait...

      4 Replies
      1. re: bulavinaka
        Servorg Oct 1, 2007 12:52 PM

        Which would be the more dangerous situation:

        A. Driving to Vegas both drunk and on the cell phone

        or

        B. Driving to Vegas eating one of those peach monstrosities, (and I use that term only in the most complimentary sense of the word)?

        Answer: B! ;-D

        1. re: Servorg
          b
          bulavinaka Oct 1, 2007 01:13 PM

          I'll give a heads-up to my fellow 'hounds before I do that one again...

        2. re: bulavinaka
          m
          Mel Gee Oct 1, 2007 01:54 PM

          I keep wet naps in the car for the specific purpose of cleaning up after a stop at the Donut Man. I try not to eat while driving, but, even still, the sugar, fruits, and goo tend to cover every space within 10 feet of the vehicle. You know, I'm home with a bad cold at the moment, but all this talk is motivating me to drive over to Glendora for a donut. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that apple fritters have a lot of vitamin C! ;-)

          1. re: Mel Gee
            b
            bulavinaka Oct 1, 2007 02:07 PM

            I think a giant apple fritter from the Donut Man dosed with a couple of 8-ounce shots of orange juice might not only lifts your spirits but is a great excuse for heading out on this beautiful day. The cinnamon will do you good as well...

            http://www.healthdiaries.com/eatthis/...

            What another great excuse to dive head-first into Donut Man...

        3. m
          Mel Gee Sep 30, 2007 11:52 PM

          The apple fritters are also delicious -- and among the largest I've ever seen -- but the cinnamon rolls with apples and raisins are the outstanding item, in my opinion, especially when they overcook slightly on the outer rings. The contrast between the chewy first bites and the gooey, appley center rings is memorable. Donut Man coffee ranges from stale and uninteresting to not bad, depending on the amount of time it has spent on the warmer. But to really appreciate these rich treats you need to grab a bag or box and take them to your favorite coffee-maker.

          P.S. The Donut Man is open 24 hours -- it's a great place to stop if you're driving the 210 in the wee hours. No restroom, however. Also: fritters and cinnamon rolls (and probably other favorites) tend to run out quickly, so you might call for the current selection before trekking over. I don't know if they take orders over the phone.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Mel Gee
            m
            Mel Gee Oct 3, 2007 12:39 AM

            I stopped at Mr. Donut for some essentials and learned that they DO take orders over the phone, so in the future you can save your disappointments for sports teams and movies. I'd call as far in advance as possible. It's a small operation, and hours can pass before they toss that next batch of fritters or cinnamon rolls into the vat of boiling oil.

            I didn't call ahead, and they were out of my favorites when I arrived. Grudgingly, I tried a chocolate-covered French cruller, among other things. Some time ago I had a plain glazed cruller, and it was quite good, but this one was the most-delicious, luscious, light, and airy donut I've had in all my born days, as we used to say down South! (It was also still faintly warm, which is a key to goodness, especially in the more-delicate donuts.)

            1. re: Mel Gee
              Dommy Oct 3, 2007 09:25 AM

              Yes... They make Donuts CONSTANTLY at Donut man... just not all of them at the same time. If you can't decide what to get looking at the window, ask for one that was just made... that will take you to heaven... :D

              --Dommy!

          2. a
            AquaW Sep 30, 2007 10:50 PM

            Yes, their donuts are huge (and I heard it used to be even bigger) -- I loved their strawberry-filled ones (when in season) -- too bad it's in Glendora though. But whenever I'm going in that direction in the 210, I definitely would make a pitstop :)

            ~H.C.
            http://la-oc-foodie.blogspot.com

            1. Dommy Sep 30, 2007 05:22 PM

              I love Apple Cinnamon Stuffed Donuts!!! :)

              Glad you enjoyed it! :D

              --Dommy!

              2 Replies
              1. re: Dommy
                Foodandwine Sep 30, 2007 07:51 PM

                Abby.. I am in LOVE with you.. You are the best!! I need to check this place out on my way to Palm Desert. Where do find these places.. Dough.. check Sugar.. check Fillings and Foodie Photos.. I need a cold shower!

                1. re: Foodandwine
                  pleasurepalate Sep 30, 2007 10:46 PM

                  Haha! Thanks for the love! :) As for how I found out about The Donut Man, I've been reading off and on about it for years, so I finally decided that I needed to see it for myself.

              2. SauceSupreme Sep 30, 2007 05:18 PM

                Make sure you go back next spring for the strawberry donuts. Those and the peach donuts are Donut Man's seasonal offerings. Regarding how to eat it, it's best to think of it not as a giant donut, but rather as a sweet burger with a glazed bun.

                -----
                Donut Man
                915 E Rte 66, Glendora, CA 91740

                4 Replies
                1. re: SauceSupreme
                  pleasurepalate Sep 30, 2007 05:25 PM

                  Sweet Burger? That sounds much cooler than just Peach Donut. :)

                  1. re: SauceSupreme
                    v
                    Vegasbuff Sep 30, 2007 06:14 PM

                    I find that the glaze for the strawberry donut is overly sweet. Haven't been there in a couple of years though.

                    The Tiger Tail is one of my favs though.

                    1. re: Vegasbuff
                      Servorg Sep 30, 2007 06:35 PM

                      Yeah, those Tiger Tails don't look sweet at all. ;-D

                    2. re: SauceSupreme
                      ipsedixit Sep 30, 2007 08:40 PM

                      The donuts are definitely a knife and fork endeavor, with extra napkins on the side.

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