I have to admit, stalking Beechwood on social media has been a bit of a love hate relationship. On one end - I needed to know what they're doing at all times and on the other, it was complete torture just scrolling through pics and pics of doughnuts. Doughnuts are definitely my type of food porn, right behind fried chicken. I might have a bit of a fry fetish...
When I heard they were also 100% vegan - I was sceptical at first, and then I remembered vegan pretty much means zero calories - right? RIGHT?
Anyways, I finally made it out this weekend and it was exactly what I imagined. This made me very, very, happy. Often times, I instagram stalk the crap out of something and the real life meet up is never what I expected. It's the worst with doughnuts. Show me a doughnut that does't photograph well, impossible I tell ya! It also doesn't help that Hamilton doesn't have a plethora of doughnut options. So when I'm craving, it often goes unsatisfied. I had a lot of high hopes for this place.
I can proudly say, these puppies are what wet dreams are made up. The dough itself is very light and airy and the toppings are fresh and sweet without being too sweet. Know what I mean? That for me, sealed the deal. There was just the perfect amount of sweetness in every bite.
I find most desserts are too sweet - one or two bites is all I can handle. Beechwood has the perfect balance. You can finish an entire doughnut ... maybe a 2nd or 3rd and not feel like you've fallen into a self induced sugar coma.
We ordered the Pistachio Glaze, Raspberry Lemon, Coconut, Blueberry Dipped, French Toast and Peanut Butter and Jam.
The pistachio was my least favourite. Compared to the others it was very forgettable. But don't get me wrong, it was great, but it was like putting a cute girl beside Mila Kunis. You still cute girl - but you're nothing next to Mila. Sorry boo. There just wasn't enough pistachio flavour for me. But, pistachio in general is pretty hard to pull flavour from.
The others on the other hand, 10/10.
Mila-Kunis-before-she-started-dating-Ashton-but-after-that-70's-show-damn-good! LIKE DAMN!
You could still see the seeds on the raspberry glaze and the lemon curd on top was out of this word. Paired together it was just orgasmic. The blueberry was hands down, on point and my absolute favourite. Very unique and beautifully done. Nothing tasted artificial and it was just like biting into the fruit itself. The coconut was waaay coconut-y and the coconut bits themselves were soft and even remained soft the next morning. Yes, we actually had leftovers. I ate my half so you can blame Ball & Chain, he is so weaksauce. Oh, and there was even a coconut whipped cream filling inside. Hot damn I was hooked! They were also a pretty decent size.
The peanut butter and jelly we purchased for a friend so I didn't get a chance to try it. I definitely licked my fingers after I moved it for this shot though. I immediately started considering how important this friend was to me ...
I brought the remainder of the doughnuts home and enjoyed them on the couch with a glass of milk. Next time, I will bring my glass of milk to Beechwood so I could enjoy all the doughnuts then and there. Being a vegan establishment they could only offer me soy. Sorry guys, I needed the real deal.
The french toast was a surprise hit for me. The crumble on top was a beautiful detail that was subtle, but completely added to the overall enjoyment of the doughnut. This definitely won't get approved by the Beechwood folks but I highly recommend pairing the french toast with a thick piece of bacon. It's honestly the perfect combination of sweet & salty - just absolute heaven. I'm actually not a fan of bacon doughnuts but these two just went hand in hand. I would go as far as slicing the doughnut in half and throwing a fried egg in between, with more bacon of course! THAT is something you wait in line for.
Speaking of the line ups; Yes it's true. You will have to wait in line, and you'll have to be quick because they sell out. By the time we made it home with our treats - Beechwood already tweeted they were sold out.
Be warned, the line up is out the door and around the shop. We did go during Good Friday, so maybe it was just the holiday line up? But it did move very quickly.
For a brand new shop, they seem to be running like a well oiled machine. There was a team in the back that looked like they were producing doughnuts the entire time - literally frying and glazing almost to order. I know since they've opened they've hired more staff and bought more equipment so they're able to pump out more doughnuts and keep up with supply and demand.
I know others will just say they'll wait till the hype dies down, and I say - but why? Suck it up, wait in line, grab a coffee on your way out and eat your feelings in your car. We all do it. No wait, make a day of it! St. Catharines has a booming food scene so you definitely won't go hungry!
Once you taste these doughnuts you'll realize something this good takes time and patience - it's not something par baked or frozen like that other place - it's made right there in front of you, with human hands!
I also have to say, do not go in there and expect to pay 80 cents for a doughnut. They're not at Walmart. They range from about $2-3 and that for me, is a decent price for something hand crafted with good ingredients. #GoodFoodMatters
5 James Street
St. Catharines, Ontario