Old Fashioned Goodness with a Vintage Hip Vibe: Top Pot Brings Delicious Dough to Renton

The Top Pot Mobile Doughnut Unit can be found in front of Mclendon Hardware.

. Be it for a saucy Pork Adobada Taco or stacked Texana Torta. . But perhaps one of the most dangerous food trucks in Renton, is a

Growing up in New York, my Sunday breakfast of choice was an everything bagel with Muenster cheese and mustard, or a schmear of cream cheese. I am a sucker for a great bialy, hold the sturgeon and lox. Here in the Northwest, I dare to say that our breakfast universe revolves around another iconic spherical nosh that combines sweet and savory — the almighty cult of the doughnut.

Doughnuts have a surprising amount of history and lore. Some talk of archeologists unearthing petrified bits of doughnuts in Southwestern Native American settlements. Others credit the Portuguese who discovered the art of deep-frying from cultures in the Far East. Still others say it was the Dutch who brought olykoeks or oily cakes, which were fried in pork fat. In 2011, Top Pot boasts that they use "zero grams trans fat palm oil to fry our doughnuts." They also dare to list all their Nutritional Information stats. Are doughnuts healthy? Not exactly. But they do contain some amount of protein and iron.

Another fact that makes Top Pot very Northwest is that they roast their own coffee. In fact, Top Pot was started by two brothers who wanted a unique Seattle coffee house that blended the old with the new. With their signature vintage vibe, the Klebeck brothers opened their 2002 brick store front in Capitol Hill. Wanting to differentiate themselves in the Seattle coffee scene, Mark and Michael rescued old-fashioned doughnut-making equipment from a garage and a retired family bakery business. Today they have five cafes, plus the vintage Airstream trailer that is now parked at the front entrance of our own mom-and-pop store, . A perfect fit.

You'll find the largest selection of doughnuts on Sundays, although the shiny trailer is open seven days a week. The doughnuts are classified in three categories: Cake, Old Fashioned, and Yeast Raised. The Old Fashioned variety uses sour cream in the batter, and is fried at a lower temperature which "allows it to open like a flower." Old Fashions have that craggy crispy top to them. Right now you can get seasonal Pumpkin-flavored Old Fashioned doughnuts.

Cake doughnuts are spiced and fried at a higher temperature to preserve their shape. They tend to be airier, and include some of Top Pot's signature doughnuts like the Pink Boa, which is iced and coated with feathery coconut shavings. Their famous Apple Fritter is the quintessential Raised doughnut. Cubed apples and cinnamon spice is folded into a yeasted dough making for a massive savory knot.

According to Top Pot employee Katie Clore, the most popular choices in Renton's Airstream location are the Maple Bar and the Apple Fritter. Her favorite and mine? The Bavarian Cream. A close second, the Raspberry Bismark. And I cannot wait until the spring seasonal flavor, Cherry Blossom.

Weekends you'll find special varieties like the doughnut with sprinkles in the team's colors. Doing Renton proud, there is a doughnut with red sprinkles honoring the Renton Indians sports teams.

Want to try a little bit of everything? You can get a dozen mixed and matched doughnuts of any variety for $14.99 in their signature pink box. Let the party begin!



440 Rainier Avenue S.
Renton, WA 98057

Mon.-Sat. 7 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Sun. 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.


*Editor's Note: The original story mis-stated the price of a dozen doughnuts at Top Pot. The correct price is $14.99. Patch regrets the error.

Carol Reynolds November 04, 2011 at 03:59 AM
There is nothing better than a jelly filled Bismark. I grew up in Chicago and a special treat was a long Bismark with lots of white sugary frosting on it. When you bit into it, the filling would ooze out all over your face. My big favorite now in NY is a fresh old-fashion apple cider doughnut!!!! YUM!!! Carol R-NY


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