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The Best Doughnut Shop in Town: Purvé Donut Stop

We’ve all been dying for a legit doughnut shop here in Hawaii, and I’m not talking about a Dunkin’ Donuts or a Krispy Kreme. I’m talking about a doughnut shop whose walls are painted with quirky and colorful art and whose workers provide great customer service. Its employees were considerate enough to ask me how my day was going and even ran to my car to give me my receipt! They also let us sample their coffee and let us try a fresh doughnut for free. Of course, I can’t forget to mention the doughnuts. There’s no other place on the island where you will find doughnuts like these. And I have to say, this place does not get enough attention as it should. I mean, the name of the shop itself plus the farting unicorn as the shop icon, already gives off a fun and special vibe!

Purvé Donut Stop is located in downtown Honolulu, near Ala Moana Center. They are open Monday-Thursday from 6AM-2PM, and are open until 5 PM on the weekend! According to the Honolulu Magazine, the shop opened during the summer, by business partners Brion Zablan and Nick Cornford who met while bartending at The Modern. I find it sad that I have not heard about this place until now! It is quite a hidden gem because it’s in the middle of a not-so-busy area at the top of a building in Iolani Center. You have to drive up into the parking lot at the top of the building. By the way, the bottom floor might be a strip club…but don’t be discouraged! The top floor in which the doughnut shop is located is actually very neat, modern, and safe. Once you get into the top parking lot, and into the entrance of the center, you’ll find yourself in a comfortable and cozy lounge with chairs, tables, and even a couch. There are a few other shops right next to Purvé, but the doughnut shop will be on your left.

When walking into the shop, you’ll probably be taken by all the fun art on the walls! It’s a great spot to take pictures and possibly get a Boomerang in. You’ll even find that the shop sells T-shirts and hats with their brand name on it. Once we got into the shop, all of the employees greeted us, and one of them came up to me to explain how ordering works. They were all very helpful and kind.

As for ordering your doughnuts, you’ll have to fill out the order form first. It’s actually very convenient because the menus are laminated and you just circle your choices with a dry-erase marker. If you change your mind, all you have to do is erase it. You check whether you are going to eat the doughnuts in or take them out. If you order your doughnuts separately, the price will be $3.25 each. For six doughnuts or more, each doughnut will cost $3 each. And if you get a dozen or more, they’ll be $2.75 each. The names of the doughnuts themselves are super amusing. For example, there’s an “It’s OK…. cuz it’s your dog”, which is basically a peanut butter and jelly doughnut. As well as a “Sunburnt Haole”, which is a lemon glazed doughnut with Li Hing Mui. Nevertheless, all of the doughnuts are quite entertaining when it comes to names!

Now let’s get to the nitty-gritty—taste. Let me just say, these are honestly the best doughnuts I’ve ever had in my life. I only have one word for this…greatness. Just pure greatness. I got the “Na-Na-Nut Buster”, which is a haupia glazed doughnut with Mac nuts and a chocolate drizzle. Once you bite into the doughnut, you can feel the crispiness of the outside and the fluffiness of the inside all at once. I could taste the sweet coconut of the haupia, the hint of chocolate, and I absolutely loved the fact that it was paired with crunchy Mac-nuts! It reminded me of eating a chocolate haupia pie except it was even better.

My two friends who accompanied me got the “Ala Wai Tea Bag” and the “Aloha Mac”. I know what you’re thinking, did I just say Ala Wai and tea bag together? Yes, yes I did. Now the name is the exact opposite of what this doughnut actually tastes like. So no, it does not taste anything like the Ala Wai, and I’m sure we’ll all never be stupid enough to try. Come on, have a sense of humor! The name just relates to the fact that the Ala Wai is green, and so is this doughnut. It has a green tea glaze and a chocolate Kit-Kat bar to top it off. It’s like getting a taste of Japan’s green tea Kit-Kat. As for the “Aloha Mac”, it consists of a chocolate glaze, Mac Nuts, and a caramel drizzle. It is quite similar to the doughnut I got, except the only difference is that the taste of haupia is replaced with caramel.

And yes, Purvé was featured as “Doughnuts With Attitude” on the Star-Advertiser on July 4th of this year! Any restaurant or place that makes it into the newspaper has to be worth it. They have this plaque with their newspaper article displayed in the shop, so be sure to take a look!

With all of that being said, Purvé Donut Stop is a must-go-to whenever you’re out exploring the town. It’s a great spot for you to hang out with friends and grab some sweets after school or even for a pot-luck or gathering that you might be going to. I recommend this place because of its devoted employees, its fun ambiance, and let’s not forget—its mouthwatering doughnuts. Don’t forget to check out “The Weekly D” which is their special doughnut of the week. This week it was a pumpkin spice doughnut. Who knows what they’ll have to offer next week!

Feel free to learn more about this place on Yelp or their personal website!

Ashley is a graduate of UH Manoa. She has her BA in English and is interested in creative non-fiction, poetry, travel writing, and journalism. She is a freelance writer, a previous editorial intern for Hawaii Home + Remodeling Magazine, and a previous features writer for her campus newspaper, Ka Leo O Hawaii. Her goal is to become an editor or an editorial assistant or a full-time travel writer. On her free time, she enjoys spending time with her dog, blogging, writing poetry, and reading! Check out Ashley's writing portfolio at ashleyinsong.com
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