This story starts with Voodoo Doughnuts in Portland, Oregon. A friend brought me there when we were passing through town, and they had donuts with Oreo cookie bits on them, and breakfast cereal, and bacon, and I couldn’t believe it but it felt so right. Like the time when, a few months after moving out from my parents’ house, I suddenly realized I could just order a pizza, and eat it, without immediate consequence.
I’m drooling on my keyboard, and that’s okay too. (Image credit: Kevin Galens)
In this analogy, my parents’ house takes the place of Canada – or more generally, that large part of the world that lacks America’s ability to take junk-food revelry into the territory of the absurd. Hamburger not big enough? Double-decker that sucker. Chocolate bar not quite doing the trick? Better toss it in the deep-fryer for a spell.
In Canada, donuts came from Tim Hortons and maintained that particularly Canadian brand of staid dignity. There were plain ones. Some had chocolate glaze on top. If you were feeling a bit wild, you could get an apple fritter or a double chocolate or vote NDP or something.
That’s why Voodoo Doughnuts was a revelation. Why not throw all kinds of crazy crap on top, you know? This is the real world! There are no rules out here! We don’t live with our parents anymore! (Or maybe you still do; that’s cool, I’m sure they’re nice.)
Later on, there were others: like Doughnut Plant in New York, where they invented the Crème Brûlée donut and dared to spell it with the correct accents, or Sublime Doughnuts in Atlanta, whose memory for me is lost in a haze of dry heat, shotguns, bourbon, and the Coca-Cola factory, but which I’m sure were delicious.
When I got back home to Montreal, I was disappointed to find that the trend hadn’t yet caught on. Oh, Tim Hortons probably introduced a new Holiday Season Limited Time Honey Dip Donut with Red & Green Glaze™ or something, but there was no voodoo magic going down up here.
Fortunately for us, the long and torturous wait is finally over. Places like Saint Donut and Crémy Pâtisserie are grabbing some toppings and just going for it. Chez Boris is serving up freshly fried Russian-style delights and even turning them into goddamn sandwiches. And I think Tim Hortons came out with a pumpkin one? Gross.
It’s a rising tide of wondrous gluttony, and this website is your ticket to the, whatever, mixed-metaphor train. Welcome aboard.
* * *
In case you haven’t already seen it, the main feature of Donut Stop Believing is a donut locator map. This blog will feature periodic reviews of good donuts from in and around Montreal, with future expansion on hold pending shareholder approval.
The site was coded and designed by me, Liam, with images made by Beccah. You can contact me at [email protected]. The MIDI version of Don’t Stop Believin’, which you can hear by clicking the boombox on the locator, was programmed by Jason Kelty.