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quick bite

Blackbird Doughnuts is the un-Dunkin’

Wendy Maeda/Globe Staff

Where to Blackbird Doughnuts, a new shop in the South End from the team behind neighborhood gastropub the Gallows.

What for Un-Dunkin’ doughnuts. These are hefty, handmade sweets in flavors such as pineapple habanero, dark chocolate pomegranate, sesame sriracha, and salted toffee. There are also a few more traditional offerings, such as cinnamon sugar and chocolate cake.

The scene This tiny store is basically just a counter surrounded by walls of white subway tile, a gothic birdcage chandelier hanging overhead. One wall is set with windows that offer a view into the kitchen, where the doughnuts are being made. There is a steady stream of customers on a Friday afternoon: People coming by for a sugar jolt and a cup of coffee, people leaving with inside-out pizza boxes filled with doughnuts cloaked in bright pink glaze, decorated with orange curls of dried chile, crusted in coconut, and filled with oozing purple compote. Hip-hop plays on the sound system, the friendly women behind the counter offer flavor recommendations, and in one corner a baby in a stroller gets her first taste of doughnut. When it’s gone, she bursts into tears.

What you’re eating Unless the sun is barely up, probably not salted toffee. Blackbird is open Thursday through Sunday, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., and some flavors sell out quickly. Lemon coconut is a fine consolation prize, tart and bright with lemon and sweet from shreds of crisp toasted coconut.


Care for a drink? Blackbird takes care of the basics, offering regular and decaf, cold brew, tea, and milk.

Overheard People discussing flavors and lamenting those they’ve missed. “No red eye,” wails one woman, staggering backward. “I love wild berry. It’s my favorite,” a staffer informs an indecisive customer. “Let’s have that,” he says with relief. “I need to go home and sleep because I have insomnia,” a woman informs the people behind the counter, purchasing enough doughnuts to give the entire neighborhood a sugar high. A man in a plaid flannel shirt, straw fedora, and clogs comes in. “What’s up? Rocking out?” He orders a dozen. “I’m bringing them to the offices,” he says. “I’m trying to be gluten-free right now.”


492 Tremont St., South End, Boston, 617-482-9000, www.blackbirddoughnuts.com.

Devra First can be reached at dfirst@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @devrafirst.