I finally was able to drag my friend Tara down to Four Barrel during lunch yesterday. She liked the cappuccino, but said she thought Blue Bottle's was better.
I had a double shot of Stumptown's Hairbender, and it was similar to last time, though maybe a bit less syrupy in its mouthfeel.
I was also inspired to try a chocolate donut after reading Man Seeking Coffee's description of one from Dynamo Donuts (Four Barrel sells their donuts, and Dynamo sells Four Barrel's coffee).
It was indeed a delicious, chocolately sponge cake with a nice, slightly spicy frosting on top. But for me, I'll always love Ma's Donuts in New Bedford, Mass., where I grew up.
Think small, dense hard cake topped with a chocolate mocha frosting (my personal favorite) or big, sugar coated donuts filled with jelly, as soft as a feather pillow to the bite. The blog New England Bites has a nice review with pictures here.
Ma's Donuts is the type of local bakery where if you don't get in line before 6 a.m. on a Sunday, you're not likely to find much on the shelves by the time you make it to the cash register. Seriously. People line up before it opens. I've shown up at 8 a.m. thinking I'd have a good chance to score a bag of my favorites, only to leave in anguish. The donuts are just that good.
I rarely eat donuts anymore (as a kid they were like crack to me, with my dad buying a dozen seemingly every weekend for me and my friends) but the Dynamo chocolate was a nice break from my boycott.