Top Pot has been a Seattle donut institution since 2002. Despite the many times I’ve been to this city, I’ve never actually eaten at any of these fried, diabetes-inducing rings of joy. Until now.
Compared to the ones you can get from the bakery case at your local supermarket, donuts at Top Pot are moderately priced. Basic donuts start from around $2, and the price increases from there. They have a pretty wide selection of donut types and flavors, along with seasonal specialties like pumpkin and cherry blossom.
The donuts are good. Not over-the-top delicious, but good. I couldn’t pinpoint any element in the donuts that Top Pot does astonishingly well over its competitors, but then again I’ve only tried about half a dozen of the 40+ flavors available. What turned out to be one of my favorites actually wasn’t a donut at all, but an apple fritter:
It’s big. It’s glazed and crunchy on the outside. It’s got apple chunks and cinnamon folded into the dough on the inside. And it’s damn tasty. There weren’t as many apples inside as I would have liked, but the sweet and crunchy exterior that made its way into every bite made up for the lack of fruit.
But, aside from the donuts, what I like most about Top Pot is the atmosphere. The location in Belltown has an upstairs loft area, which is tucked away and (generally) quiet enough to the point where you can read, study, or procrastinate online for hours on end.
What we have here then, is something akin to a Starbucks. It’s a comfortable, clean place where you can buy a sweet treat, plop yourself in a chair, and spend half the day catching up on work or reading that book you bought six months ago but haven’t started yet. There’s also free WiFi, which makes this a great spot for travelers and tourists to not only taste local food, but check up on emails as well.
No matter if you’re a first-time visitor or a loyal long-time customer, I suggest you do what I did on my first visit to Top Pot:
Silence that nagging health-conscious voice in the back of your head as soon as you walk in the door.
Order whatever you want.
Grab a chair, get comfortable.
And for the next few hours, just soak in the atmosphere of the shop, and indulge in the sweetness of your sugary treat.