I’ve been reading and dreaming about the “Cronut” for several years. So when I heard that Wichita’s new Dunkin’ Donuts had a Cronut knock-off on the menu, I was definitely interested.
The original Cronut, which is made of croissant dough formed into a doughnut shape and fried, was invented by a New York City chef named Dominique Ansel and is sold at his bakery. Time Magazine named Cronuts among the 25 Best Inventions of 2013, and that year, they were sold on the streets of New York for much more than their $5 price tag.
Bakeries around the world have been making imitation Cronuts ever since. (Though none are called Cronuts excpt Ansel’s original, trademarked inventions, which people still stand in line to get.)
Wichita, which always gets the good stuff last, didn’t have anything Cronut-like until Dunkin’ Donuts arrived in December. The chain started serving a version of the Cronut, it’s called, simply, “Croissant Donut,” in October.
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I finally got a chance to try it this morning, and it was ... not bad. But it wasn’t the life-changer I’d hoped it would be.
Perhaps my expectations were too high after years of pastry fantasies, but to me, it didn’t taste a lot different than any other glazed doughnut. It was taller, though, and airier, and the pretty layers were visible when I split the thing open. Dunkin’ Donuts’ version wasn’t filled with cream like the original Cronuts are, but then again, it was half the price. (Still, $2.50 is a bit steep for a single, non-life-changing doughnut.)
So my Cronut quest is not complete. Now I know I’m going to have to have the real thing in New York City.
That said, I did like the new Dunkin’ Donuts store. It was my first time in, and it was warm and cheerful, and my cup of top-rate Dunkin’ Donuts coffee made my trip more than worth my time.