Previously Tuller Premium Foods, CF was taken over and renamed by Jeremy Wachalter, former sous-chef at The Modern (the MOMA's restaurant). Wachalter has revamped the menu to include prepared gourmet foods, Gorilla Coffee, home-cured deli meats and the focus of this post, Doughnut Plant Doughnuts.
"Basically, we're all about providing customers with high quality foods at a reasonable price," says Cobblestone employee Jason. Then he tells me about some sitcom pilot he wrote years ago in San Francisco, the premise of which was he and his friend going into Doughnut shops late night and interviewing mostly-foreign bakers. So the guy definitely knows his Doughnuts. That said, the one item the shop can't discount are the Doughnuts ($3 a pop), as even getting them directly from the Plant runs pretty steep. But trust me, they're well worth it.
Now I know Doughnut Plant proprietor Mark Israel's reputation has been somewhat tarnished by his catty and completely juvenile performance on a recent episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay (a topic which has ignited much debate right here on the pages of Blognut). But his Doughnuts are so ridiculously good that I've tried to look past his sour behavior, and instead appreciate his craft. Today I go for a Coconut Cream and a Valrhona Chocolate.
The coconut is tops. I know I've spoken at length about the marvelous consistency of Doughnut Plant's yeast-raised dough, but I'll say it again – it's the best dough around. This cinnamon-tinged, airy substance compresses with each bite, slowly returning to its original shape over a period of minutes – like some sort of Serta Perfect Sleeper memory foam. It's the perfect vehicle for a thick and ski-mogul-y layer of sweet glaze crawling with shredded coconut. And while a ringed Doughnut, Mark manages once again to stuff his loop, this time with not-too-coconutty coconut cream. This filled-ring Doughnut phenomenon has been covered extensively in previous Doughnut Plant posts so I won't go in to it – but click here for more coverage of this marvelous feat of ingenuity.
While not as impressive as the coconut, the Valrhona Chocolate is a satisfying second course. It's made of the same complex yeast dough, only this time smothered on all sides with rich, dark Valrhona Chocolate. The only shortcoming is the lack of filling. Given Mark's tendency to push Doughnut boundaries, I thought for sure my first bite would reveal a molten gush of chocolate - instead, all dough. A white frosting "V" lays across the top advertising the French chocolate maker for whom the Doughnut is named. It's a must-try for anyone who likes loads of cacao, but hopefully Mark will come to his senses and stuff it with even more.
But more important than the Doughnuts themselves, is the fact that right now, at this very minute there's a tray of Doughnut Plant Doughnuts resting a mere two blocks from my apartment.
199 Court Street
Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn
Coconut Cream -