I can be a bit narrow-minded when it comes to food. I’ve got no interest in ever trying out a raw food restaurant, I believe that lettuce buns should be banned in this country, and I will never order anything that has purposely been made vegan or gluten free (the only exception occurred when I was at Cartems, and I still resent them to this day for not having regular versions available). Surprisingly however, I’m not turned off by the idea of a baked doughnut. I think it’s because I actually don’t eat donuts often (something that I probably should work on), so I don’t have very strong opinions about how a donuts should be. Furthermore, a lot of my other favourite foods (cakes, brownies, pies etc) are baked, so why shouldn’t a baked donut taste good?
This brings me to Gabi & Jules, which makes, in addition to a large number of other sweet treats, baked donuts in several different varieties. Now the location of the actual bakery is in Port Moody, which is way further than I’m willing to travel for a donut. Fortunately, their goods are also available at Caffe Divano, which had a location in Burnaby. There were three varieties of baked donuts available when I visited; I went with a green tea white chocolate flavour. I also sampled their Pumpkin Cream Cheese Loaf and Vanilla Berry Sour Cream Coffee Cake.
Baked Donut ($2.50, left):
As I’ve mentioned earlier, I don’t eat donuts often, so I don’t really know what I’m supposed to look for in a “good” donut. I can only say that I quite enjoyed this. It was moist and cakey, with a surprisingly strong matcha flavour (most often “green tea” flavoured desserts don’t really have much green tea flavour). The white chocolate icing was also delicious and paired well with the matcha. I did find there to be a slight “eggy” flavour that was a bit off-putting. Personally though, I thought that this doughnut is tastier (not to mention a whole lot cheaper) than the overpriced gluten-free crap from Cartems.
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Loaf ($3.75, right):
I’m a sucker for cream cheese frosting, so I thought that I’d like this. Unfortunately, the frosting was quite bland and dry. Moreover, the cake itself, while relatively moist, had an odd texture: there seemed to be pieces of bran-like stuff inside that I found to be off-putting. Like the doughnut, the cake also suffers from a slightly “eggy” flavour. Although not horrible – I still enjoyed eating it – I’d have preferred a slice of loaf from Superstore or any other generic grocery store over this.
Vanilla Berry Sour Cream Coffee Cake ($4):
This was my favourite of the bunch. The outside, though a tad dry, was cripsy and had a lovely caramelized flavour. The inside was soft and moist, and fortunately did not suffer from the same “eggy” flavour like some of their other treats, but instead had a nice fragrance of vanilla and cinnamon. There was a fair amount of berries inside, which lent a nice bit of tartness.
So I guess baked donuts, while nothing life-changing, are still pretty good. And I do generally like the other treats from Gabi & Jules, asides from the flop that’s their pumpkin loaf. I do hope to try some more of their stuff (in particular their layered cakes and pies) in the future, if Caffe Divano decides to carry them.
Recommendations: Vanilla Berry Sour Cream Coffee Cake, Baked Donut