With a 12-year-old son always up for adventure, creating food and bike excursions around the city will always had him jump to his feet, onto his bicycle, and snap on his helmet, ready to go. We set off from our Logan Square home with one goal in mind: to visit three of the top new donut shops in Chicago, by bike. And so we embarked on our own adventure: our Tour de Donut had begun.
First stop: Glazed and Infused in Wicker Park (with many other locations around the city, too). Glazed and Infused prides itself on crafting its classic American donuts in-house. We pulled our bikes up to the fun We Can Donut mural and stepped up to the window to place our orders. We split a Maple Bacon Long John, which was rich and slightly spicy thanks to the peppery bacon. This delightful Long John managed to encapsulate all the yummy flavors of breakfast - bacon, maple syrup, pancakes - in one delicious donut.
Fueled with donut energy, we hopped back on our bikes and pedaled down Milwaukee Avenue towards our next donut destination, enjoying a small section of protected bike lanes along the way secure enough to make every Chicago biker feel just a bit safer.
We crossed the Chicago River, stopping to admire the bridges, then hit our next stop: The Doughnut Vault at 401 1/2 N Franklin St. We were shocked to see a long line snaking out the door, even though by this time it was drizzling. Evidently, a little bit of rain is not enough to deter Doughnut Vault aficionados. As we sought cover from the drizzle under a nearby awning, a family munching on donuts told us they had over-ordered and would be happy to share. How lucky were we?! They regaled us with a gingerbread cake donut and a chocolate glazed donut: both were obviously fresh from the oven; they tasted like heaven. Here's a tip: French-pressed Metropolis Coffee is just $1 here.
Our final stop: Firecakes. The donuts on display here looked nothing short of decadent. And there was no line whatsoever! Indeed the donuts looked so delicious it was hard to choose! We settled on a Coconut Cream and a Peanut Butter Cup. The Coconut Cream was paradise: a soft as-air-donut filled with creamy coconut pudding and topped with crispy fresh coconut flakes. The Peanut Butter Cup was to-die for: another light-as-air donut filled with a creamy, rich peanut butter cream and topped with dark chocolate ganache. Indeed of the three donut shops we visited on our Tour de Donut 2013, Firecakes was the best.
How To Create Your Own Tour De Donut: Divvy Bikeshare
It was a good thing we rode our bicycles, because several donuts later our bellies were full and it was time to burn some calories! We pedaled home through the city, enjoying the sights and sounds and the fun of riding a bike. All of the donut shops we visited are an easy biking distance from the Loop or the Mag Mile, with Glazed and Confused the farthest afield in Wicker Park. If you're in Chicago and craving a good donut and a fun bike ride, hop on a Divvy Bike and set off to explore some of our fantastic new donut shops! Here's a great 5-step guide to Chicago's Divvy Bikeshare program by my fellow ChooseChicago.com blogger to get you started.