Mike’s has been stuffing Brooklynites full of monstrous bursting-at-the-seems homemade donuts for over 30 years. The place is run by Mike Neamonitis and his son Gus. I think Mike’s son-in-law is also involved too but I don’t know his name.
I spoke with Gus a few weeks ago over a steaming cup of black coffee and a plain glazed, which I have to say is one of the best in all of Brooklyn. It was soft, only a smidge chewy and covered in just the right amount of glaze – like a slightly less sweet Dunkin, making it WAY less sweet than a Krispy Kreme. Why does Krispy Kreme suck so bad?!
After a lengthy conversation about the state of independent Brooklyn donut culture, Gus hands me a large white box stuffed to corners with every kind of Donut you can think of. That’s actually not true, because after the fact I realized that there was only a single “filled” Donut among the group – a lone Boston Creme. Which is odd because filled Donuts are a big deal. And in my experience, they’re the most popular variety among most Donut eaters. But here’s the kicker (I’ve never before used this phrase in print): This crazy mofo Gus won’t let me pay for him the Donuts. Come on Gus, you just gave me a cup of coffee and well over a dozen fresh Donuts, let me pay you something. “No,” says Gus, “enjoy my Donuts.”
When I get home I feel guilty. Here I am championing the mom-and-pop Donut shop, hoping they can survive the intimidating and overly-purple neon threat of Dunkin, and I go and take a significant portion of their daily inventory without shelling out even a dime of compensation. But whatever, it’s too late now. So I eat the Donuts:
Plain Glazed – Already described above. Dunkin-y, but better.
Glazed Twist – Exactly the same flavor as the plain glazed, but with a more inventive and longer lasting shape. Perfect for when you’re in the mood for a glazed but are starving.
Vanilla Frosted – The same light and airy yeast-raised dough as the glazed varieties only this time covered in a smooth vanilla frosting and a unilateral swath of sprinkles. Again, the dough is soft and a bit chewy and the frosting provides the perfect amount of sugar.
Marble Twist – A classic New York Donut, the marble twist is like two Donuts in one. Just as I start to appreciate the wad of plain cake dough that’s resting in my mouth, the taste of chocolate takes over. Both components are soft and moist and just light enough so I don’t feel sick after ingesting the 10 inch long shaft of dough. That didn’t come out the way I wanted it to.
Cinnamon Roll – Again, the same outstanding yeast-raised dough, only this time wrapped four times into an irresistible spiral. Between each coil lies a hearty vein of cinnamon and after finishing the entire thing in under 10 seconds I feel simultaneously sick and the best I’ve ever felt.
Vanilla Triangle Thing – I honestly don’t know what this donut is called. But I do know is that it consists of a wedge of yeast-raised dough smeared with a thick layer of vanilla frosting. It really just tasted like the Vanilla Frosted I described earlier so I’ll stop here.
Chocolate Frosted – Same as Vanilla Frosted but with chocolate frosting. I’m getting lazy with these descriptions, I know.
Lastly, the Boston Crème – Again, yeast-raised dough smeared with smooth chocolate frosting and impregnated with a glob of rich Boston Crème. Though Blognut is generally not a huge fan of filled Donuts, the Boston Creme, along with the plain-glazed, were the highlights of the box.
And that’s it for Mike’s. This place is definitely tops and ranks right up there with Peter Pan as one of the best Donut shops in Brooklyn, and all of NYC for that matter. If it wasn’t such a chore getting out to Bay Ridge, I could see myself starting off everyday at Mike’s, with my lazy, Donut-eating ass firmly planted on one of the shop’s vintage swivel bar stools and my elbows resting on a slab of retro Formica.
6822 5th Avenue
Plain Glazed -
Glazed Twist -
Vanilla Frosted -
Marble Twist -
Vanilla Frosted Triangle Thing -
Chocolate Frosted -
Boston Creme -