Strange Donuts has risen from out of nowhere to become one of the most popular places in St. Louis. In some ways it’s just another donut shop, but with the addition of their “Strangers”, donuts that are joint efforts with other local St. Louis hotspots, they’ve created a marketing frenzy that guarantees the place has a line going out the door.
The owner, Corey Smale, comes from the marketing and branding world so it’s no wonder they’ve been able to achieve such success getting the word out about the “dones”, their word of choice when referring to their wares. Originally it was going to be opened up in Dogtown and be called Dogtown Donuts, but the deal for the location feel through and the city of Maplewood extended their aid to bring their business to the Maplewood Square area.
But enough talking about the business; the real important things are the “dones” themselves. They have a lot of options, plus the previously mentioned “stranger” which is only offered in the evening on the weekends. These have included the “Bit of Italy” stranger with Pastaria, “Brisket & Gravy” with Sugarfire Smoke House, and most recently the “Pizzadone” with Pi Pizzaria.
So, is the hoopla and hype all worth it? I have to admit the donuts are pretty good and do not give me heartburn like a lot of the cheap donuts out there do. I do think a lot of them are much tastier when popped into the microwave for a bit, but most donuts are better when fresh and hot. Bulk donut eaters might also balk at the price tag of the donuts, which generally cost a dollar or more each.
I really did like their Pizzadone, and their Elvis was a peanut-buttery, chocolatey, banana-y delight. I wasn’t the biggest fan of their gooey buttercake done but that was Christine’s favorite. Their blueberry cheesecake is one of my personal favorites and I hope they keep it on the menu. Their Campfire looked good but it defnitely needed to be heated to be enjoyed properly, and then it was like a melty, tasty smore.
In the end, they have enough variety that there is something there anyone would like, and when you add in the Strangers then you can always expect something a little different each time.
- Pros: Truly interesting “dones” with a lot of flavor and variety.
- Cons: Several of the dones were not that good unless fresh or heated up.
- Charlie’s Favorites: Blueberry Cheescake, Elvis, Pizzadone (Stranger)
- Christine’s Favorites: Gooey Buttercake, Blueberry Cheescake, Thousand Dollar