Voodoo Doughnuts: Portland’s Magical Goodness
Doughnuts, markets, good eats and weird stuff were themes for the first full day in Portland, Ore., during last month’s birthday trip to the Pacific Northwest. With a body still in sync with the Eastern Time Zone, waking up somewhat early was easy and began with a dash to world famous Voodoo Doughnuts , “Where Magic is in the Hole” (22 S.W. Third Ave.; Tel: 503-241-4704).
Open 24 hours, arriving around 8 a.m. on a Saturday was a good thing because when we walked passed around 1:30 later in the afternoon, there was a line to enter the little shop. The night prior we drove by around 9 p.m. and there was a longer line and no place to park.
Once inside Voodoo Doughnuts, I realized why the lines were long for the sugary-magical goodness. The interior is small. For some reason I was expecting the shop to be a bit bigger with a few tables to enjoy the delights (and people watch). Capacity is probably 10, and that’s if you like everyone.
We grabbed our treats, picked up beverages at a Starbucks (no guilt visiting this chain while traveling, since Starbucks was born in the Pacific Northwest and not drinking it would not be cool) and did what the homeless do in Portland: camp out in front of a storefront to eat. Happened to be a bridal shop and while noshing on doughnuts (and recording with my Flip), the store clerk threw the hairy eyeball, our clue to pack ’em up and move to the Portland Farmers Market at Portland State University.
Can’t leave you in suspense as what fried dough I enjoyed: Voodoo Doll Doughnut and Bacon Maple Bar. Voodoo Doll was filled with either a strawberry or raspberry filling – perhaps to represent a human’s insides? – and covered with a luscious chocolate frosting accented with turquoise blue piping for eyes, mouth and a big “V”. The belly was pierced with a pretzel stick (honestly, I’d be a little harsher with my voodoo doll but understand the need to make it all edible).
The Bacon Maple Bar was almost everything it should be. The exterior had the savory-sweet combo with the bacon strips and maple frosting. The doughnut was soft and flaky, like the Voodoo Doll but there wasn’t any filling. Was expecting at least some sort of maple cream but it was empty. Either way, both were tasty and no, I did not eat both doughnuts in one sitting. They lasted me throughout the entire day, although they did get a little crushed while riding in my backpack.
Traveling companion Zeldamae opted for tamer doughnut concoctions: Blueberry Cake and Cinnamon Crueller, and she said both were equally delish. Other doughnuts on the menu included apple fritters, Arnold Palmer (cake doughnut covered with lemon and tea powder), and Grape Ape (raised doughnut with vanilla frosting and grape powder), just to name a few. I’d love to try every flavor…someday.