At the fourth annual Chicago Donut Fest, the donuts outnumbered the people, resulting in full stomachs and satisfied taste buds. Twelve Chicago bakeries handed out samples of their sweet treats to the crowd of dessert lovers at Old Crow Smokehouse (149 W. Kinzie St.) April 6.
The event spanned four rooms on two floors, spreading to the neighboring restaurant Moe’s Cantina. Groups of young Chicagoans meandered around the spaces to taste the variety of local donuts.
Those working at bakery booths seemed excited to share their creations with the world. They often gave out more than the original one serving the tasting tickets allotted, allowing people to try more flavors.
Dip and Sip Donuts (2256 W. Roscoe St.) previewed some of its menu at the fest, though its Roscoe Village storefront hasn’t officially opened its doors. It has no opening date yet, but the marbled-blue-vanilla-iced and chocolate-mocha donuts are sure to draw in customers. The donut’s crumbly nature made them perfect for soaking up coffee as implied by “Dip and Sip.”
Family-run Roeser’s (3216 W. North Ave.) offered a selection of donut holes for sampling, featuring a red velvet, lemon poppy seed, blueberry and carrot cake variety. The rich, doughy bites burst with flavor as Roeser’s brought in unique flavors to the donut world.
On the lighter end, D&D’s Place (8324 S. Kedzie Ave.) served up classic glazed donut holes. The fluffy morsels were a simple, not-too-sweet contrast to the more elaborate flavors featured at the fest.
Donuts might have been center stage, but Palermo Bakery (7312 W. Irving Park Road) ensured the Italian pastry cartocci got its time in the spotlight. The cannoli-like dessert consisted of a puffy exterior and a creamy ricotta-based filling complete with chocolate chips.
Stan’s Donuts produced the most visually appealing donuts, displaying bite-sized versions of its classic glazed, vanilla-frosted, chocolate-frosted and cinnamon sugar in front of the bakery’s pastel pink boxes. Likely being the most well-known Chicago donut chain at the fest, attendees eagerly waited in line for the cakey delights.
West Town Bakery, Firecakes, Donut Slut, Somethin’ Sweet Donuts, Wishing Well Mini Donut Creations, Scafuri Bakery, Allegretti’s Bakery and Krispy Kreme also served up some of their signature fried pastries.
The Chicago Donut Fest gave these local bakeries a platform and locals an opportunity to live out their donut-related dreams. It may have been difficult for one to consume all twelve bakeries’ samples being surrounded by too many pastries for one stomach to handle. But, now that these local bakeries were given a platform, people know of all their options.
Once everyone’s recovered from their carb overload, these shops may be seeing more customers looking for another dose.