I walked in and saw warm, beautifully infused pieces of doughnut heaven at Chicago’s newest doughnut bakery, Glazed and Infused. I was greeted with both service and a smile as I took in the 40s charm of the store at 813 W. Fulton, with its vintage war posters, such as a poster with Rosie the Riveter saying “We Can Donut!” or Uncle Sam saying “I Want You Doughnut.” I was immediately smitten with the service and smiles, and could not wait to try the doughy beauties in front of me.
I sat down with General Manager and President of Sales and Operations, Megan Brown. She told me that she and co-founder Scott Harris were in New York City and saw these kinds of classic, American doughnut stores there. Harris wanted to bring that to Chicago, without lines around the block. He found the best chefs he could, Christine McCabe and Tom Culleeney, who are also co-founders with Harris. Together, the duo sought to create classic, American flavors, using the freshest possible ingredients. Brown said that the unique spin that they bring to Chicago doughnut shops is that their doughnuts is that they are completely handmade and trans-fat free, using locally grown ingredients. McCabe makes fresh raspberry jam that is infused in the glaze and the homemade jam is the filling in the Bismarcks. The chocolates use only the best chocolate. Everything is made fresh, and it shows! Brown remarked that the shop is unique because the doughnuts are freshly made throughout the day, not just made to fit the early morning rush.
When I walked in and saw the fabulous assortment, I did not know what to try first! Luckily, I had the help of Jasmine, one of the sweetest sales girls, to assist me in my selection. I decided to try a few (why not!) and wished I could have eaten doughnuts all day long! I settled on the raspberry glazed, which was so sweet and fresh. It tasted as if I was eating fresh raspberries on cake. It was doughy, with the perfect amount of the gorgeous jam-infused glaze on the top. I then settled on a lemon, with infused lemon juice and lemon peel in the glaze on top of a cake doughnut. Wow, was it wonderful! A little piece of heaven with lemon on top! The sweet, tangy lemon flavor rang throughout the whole doughnut, not just the glaze on top, which was so refreshing. I kept my taste test going with the red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting. The richness of the frosting was a perfect topper to the delicate, moist red velvet center. I almost thought it was superior to a red velvet cupcake! And of course, being the chocolate lover that I am, I could not leave the store without tasting both the vanilla cake doughnut with chocolate icing and the, as Jasmine called it, Chocolate doughnut x4 (Van Cake Chocolate Frosted). Both were rich with chocolate decadence, and the vanilla doughnut had the real, pure vanilla sweetness I had been hoping for. As much as I was a fan of the doughnuts, I could not leave without a cup of the locally roasted coffee. It was the perfect companion for my doughnuts and as soon as I finished my first cup, I wanted another!
The current flavors on tap for the cake doughnuts are Red Velvet, Van Cake Chocolate Frosted, Bacon “Sticky Bun” Cruller, Luscious Lemon, and an Old Fashioned Cake Doughnut. The yeast doughnut flavors are currently Apple Fritter, Vanilla Bean Glazed, Maple Bacon Long John, PB&J and Crème Brulee. Brown added that they flan to add one new flavor for the week, every week, so that customers can bank on their staples but also try what’s new.
Brown hopes that Chicagoans will flock to the several Glazed and Infused stores that are to open this summer not just for the amazing little delicacies, but for the atmosphere that the store provides. “We really want to give people not just an incredible product but an incredible experience. Our girls are here to serve you, to talk to you, and make you feel at home here. We hope that people will want to wake up in the morning, treat themselves to coffee and a doughnut, and stay awhile at our store.” The Fulton store has an industrial, classic, Americana 40s feel with a real casual vibe, with low music, vintage factory chairs and reclaimed stools and tables. I would love to sit in the store with friends for hours, enjoying the scents and casual atmosphere the store provides.
There are two Glazed and Infused stores already open (the third opens in July) and have easy access from the CTA. The current stores open right now are the store at 813 W. Fulton close to the Grand Blue CTA station, 929 W. Armitage off of the Brown Line Armitage stop, and at 1553 N. Milwaukee at the Damen Blue Line stop. Brown says there are plans for more stores in the city to open this summer, and good thing too! The more stores, the more opportunities for Chicagoans to truly experience everything that Glazed and Infused has to offer. You can follow them on Twitter at @GoGlazed and find them on Facebook at Glazed and Infused.
All images by Susan Hager