2015-2016 has been a big year for doughnuts in Birmingham.

For example, the introduction of a truly spectacular (and Birmingham’s first) cake doughnut with We Have Doughnuts. We are *huge* fans.

However much we love WHD (and believe me we do, I have a love handle dedicated to WHD), this town is big enough for more than one amazing doughnut place. Given the appetite Birminghamsters seem to have for the familiar elevated to a higher level (like Post Office Pies with pizza, or Revelator with artisanal toast), I think we can handle 2, 3, or 4 amazing doughnut places.

Last week, I read that Hero Doughnuts was planning a pop up at Seasick Records last Saturday. Coincidentally, last week I also blogged about Woodlawn Cycle Cafe, where Hero Doughnuts’ chef works. So I put two and two together, and figured that Hero must be pretty awesome.

The pop-up began at 10, and we rolled up at 9:57.  The line was out the door:


We began to wait when we realized our foodie friend Michelle was running towards us with a doughnut of each flavor!  We had planned to meet up, and she had gotten there early, thank goodness. We headed to Crestwood Coffee to grab a drink and inspect the goods.

Here is the branding: simple and beautiful.

Adorable little buttons:

Ok, the doughnuts.

Good thing we got there when we did. They were out by 10:35am.

Here’s the full line-up:

With pricing:

Here’s how it comes.  Again, note the awesome branding and the slight foreshadowing of the grease stain.

We cut each one into quarters and dug in.

The chocolate crunch. Not overly sweet, surprisingly hearty, and probably the most beautiful doughnut we’ve ever seen.
Sugar and spice.   The layers of the brioche were almost as decadent as the outside. Sweet, sugar all over your face experience.

Blood orange. Probably the most unusual looking doughnut I’ve ever seen. Delicious orange and orange peel flavors on top of what can only be described as melt in your mouth sweetness.

Cardamom lemon peel. This was like eating a mango lassi.  It seems like cardamom is really having a moment in this town.

Vanilla glazed. Sounds boring, but it’s not. Vanilla bean and a super sweet glaze are the perfect topping for that sweet brioche.
Milk jam and brown butter. It tasted like it looks:

When we cut it, the thick, caramel-y filling went everywhere. We loved it, of course.

This pic gives the only cross-sectional view we took of that brioche. Look at those layers!

After our doughnut smorgasbord, we had several quarter doughnuts left. We ran into a good friend, who had arrived just as they ran out. We were glad to give her what we had left-these doughnuts are so filling, eating any more just wasn’t an option. And plus, eating 6 doughnut quarters just puts you in that giving, charitable kind of mood. We just wanted to pass along the doughnut love.

According to this source, their next pop up will be on March 26th at Seasick. We’ll see you there, this time at least 30 minutes early just to be safe.