The novelty doughnut grows up

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There's little outside seating at the cafe, but for Dynamo's rhubarb doughnut you make do.
GUARDIAN PHOTO BY CAITLIN DONOHUE

Having come of age in Portland at a time that coincided with the rise of Voodoo Doughnut, the novelty doughnut trend has had ample time to lose its luster for me. It is easy to be jaded when you grew up with 2 a.m. Nyquil-glazed treats. But today I had a rhubarb doughnut from Dynamo and my essential understanding of the fancy doughnut meme has shifted forever.

Acquaint yourself with this one. I know that Dynamo is all the rage right now, and its essential yuppie-ness makes its location on 24th Street... well one of the many things on 24th Street that harbinge ethnic, class, and culture sea changes. But on days like today, when you don't want to get to work so quick, the darling awning and clever curbside coffee line has a way of just enveloping you. 

A rhubarb doughnut?

This was a new concept to me -- the doughnuts in my life have been of the maple bar sort, and then of the shaped-like-a-joint sort at Voodoo, and then more recently, from the shaped-like-a-person-in-a-straightjacket school of thought that birthed the South Bay's Psycho Donuts. But Dynamo's rhubard had no gimmicky, arranged sprinkles. Nor is this doughnut a mere vehicle for the numbing consumption of empty calories. 

It had style. A sweetness, yes (don't worry I'm still all jacked up on refined sugars), but also taste. A fully conceived dessert, and yes I was eating it at 10 in the morning. I wanted to give into Dynamo's lemon-pistachio and coconut varieties, but I resolutely walked off down the road. 

Just like the doughnut, we are growing up. 

 

Dynamo Donuts

Open Tues.-Sat., 7 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sun, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. 

2760 24th St., SF

(415) 920-1978

www.dynamodonut.com

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