Blue Bird

May 2019
Donut from Blue Bird Bakery, Brighton

Autumn has crept up on us. The heat of a few weeks ago has given in to cool nights; white wine has been swapped for red, sandals for boots. Despite my Scottish background, I’m not well equipped for cold, my body doesn’t like it. Give me 40 degrees over 10 any day. In my home it’s common to see me in multiple layers, including a man-sized fleece dressing gown, with furry slippers, huddled under a blanket with a heat bag tucked up in my arms. Despite perhaps the unappealing aesthetics of my clothes, these layers provide extra room, or disguise, for the effects of my donut eating habit.

This may come as a surprise to readers but donuts aren’t the healthiest treat on the block. Ever eaten a ‘healthy’ donut? Don’t bother. The lack of oil and real sugar has a significant and disappointing effect on flavour and texture. Don’t buy into the Pinterest label of “Tastes like a real donut!! Vegan, sugar, gluten and oil-free!” – they don’t even taste like real food. What calories these so-called donuts may have aren’t worth a bite.

Blue Bird Bakery, Brighton
Blue Bird Bakery,
Brighton Road, Brighton
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But I’m not here to promote unhealthy eating either. I think food should be had in moderation. Yes, I eat a lot of donuts, but I also exercise. I used to eat a lot more donuts, but this blog has helped me to cut down – considering every bite to make sure it’s worth eating as well as appreciating every donut, rather than mindlessly consuming. Whilst reviewing my husband and I usually split a donut in half, rather than each having one whole. However, in the cold, dark of winter, my old donut eating habits are creeping back in.

So, what does this all have to do with Blue Bird bakery? Absolutely nothing. I didn’t have much to write about the bakery itself because it was merely a bakery I stumbled upon whilst driving down Brighton Road. My lacklustre notes described the bakery as nondescript, sitting in the middle of a bland shopping centre, competing with a Bakers Delight across the tiled floor.  And so here we find ourselves, enjoy the review!

Aesthetics 6

The donut was squat and chubby with white slashes of icing drizzled across a light chocolate topping. The donut was heavy and felt dense for its small size. The smell of the donut was heavenly; yeasty and fresh. There was an unequal distribution of icing, especially coming down the sides. The dough diameter was lumpy, with odd outpouchings coming out like little feet.

Topping 6.5

The icing was a chocolate flavour. Due to its unequal distribution parts were thin, other parts far too thick. On top, there were slightly soft hundreds and thousands across half, which added to the texture but not so much the flavour.

Dough 6.5

On the first bite, I thought to myself "I really like this dough". But then as I masticated I realised it was a lot saltier then any donut dough I’ve tried in the past. Too salty in fact. But overall it was still fresh, with a lovely yeasty kick. When combined with the sweetness of the icing the saltiness wasn't as noticeable.

Texture 8

The dough was lovely, soft and chewy. It was so fresh I wondered if it had only just been fried. The dough had a great chew density. The only crunch came from hundreds and thousands, but they topped a sticky icing that was too thin in parts and too thick in other parts. It was very oily to the touch, which made a mess.



Almost Wonderful

I didn't mind the donut when eaten as a whole, but each individual flavour component on their own didn't impress. I would say that dough texture can make or break a donut – and the texture of this dough was wonderfully fresh, soft and chewy.

  • Aesthetics: 6
  • Topping: 6.5
  • Dough: 6.5
  • Texture: 8

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