Glazed Old Fashioned Donut
Blackeye Coffee Cake Donut
Bourbon Apple Fritter
Vanilla Blossom with Vanilla Bean Custard, Vanilla Bean Icing, Candied Orchid
Lemon Meringue with Lemon Curd, Toasted Meringue, Pie Crust
Located inside the City Center Skyway, a location likely known to Minnesotans looking to avoid frigid Winter weather but not entirely obvious from the address on Google Maps, it was as part of a search for The Twin Cities best Donut that Monday led to Cardigan, the shop now open for just over a year found largely empty save for employees though a few professionally dressed folks en route to the office did stop by from time to time.
Opened in May 2017 by Justin Bedford and Jeff Bull, two downtown denizens who tapped the skills of baker Daniel Rosene to create recipes focused on classics it is on the right side of a substantial space that guests will find rows of Fried Dough, the additional offering of Greek Yogurt and Oatmeal topped to order an interesting addition as is a collection of locally produced goods lining the opposite wall.
Somewhat stark in terms of decor besides the aforementioned, a situation probably less noticeable when the place is more busy and the only focus is not overhead Pop Radio, it was after surveying the day’s line-up that six items were selected, a free cup of Coffee from Black Eye Roasting Co. showing well with good body and Caramel notes that paired well to first bites of an Old Fashioned that was sloppily glazed and far less impressive than that at The Bachelor Farmer Café, though admittedly over $1 less expensive.
Moving next to a Cruller, good amounts of Egg appropriately still tasted throughout its wispy interior, it was next with a crumbly Cake Donut topped in Coffee Frosting that Cardigan stumbled, some reprieve found amidst a Fritter described as “Bourbon Apple” though a dearth of Fruit rendered the center somewhat dull in comparison to a crisp and sugary exterior.
Rounding out the morning with two of the more expensive “Inspired” options, a Bismark stuffed with rich housemade Custard and topped with a candied Orchid Blossom easily Cardigan Donut’s best option on this day, it was finally with Lemon Meringue that curiosity was satisfied, a poor piping job seeing only perhaps half the Longjohn actually filled with Lemon Curd and telling once again of a place that doesn’t pay attention to small details despite premium pricing.