My Take On California Donuts

Francesca Ortiz, Writer

As a student, I tend to procrastinate. It is my fault really, but I tend to stay up late on most weekdays, so I never get a chance to rest. Due to my odd hours, I tend to crave late night snacks often. However, it is difficult to find food because most places are not open at the crack of dawn. After asking around, it seems like one of the places that is frequently visited by students is California Donuts.


Opened in 1982, the Donut Shop is open 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week. Its location just outside Koreatown makes it a relatively easy place for people to reach, although it would be rather inconvenient for people who do not drive.


Without my phone it would have been difficult. The shop itself is located in a strip mall with limited parking at certain hours. The best option for parking is the neighborhood located just down the street from the shop.


I chose to visit, well after 11 PM so the cue was short with two people in front of me. The small line moved relatively fast though, and I was able to order easily.


The brightly illuminated windows showcase the wide variety of donuts and pastries the location has to offer. Ranging from overly-sweet delights to simple treats for the mature tastebuds, they seem to offer something for everyone.


One of the individuals that was waiting in line was Ricardo Garcia. Garcia chose to purchase a ‘cronut.’


“I have been coming to this place for years,” Garcia said. “Their donuts never disappoint and it’s conveniently located 2 blocks away from my house.”


The menu offers drinks and other pastries aside from donuts. One of their specialty drinks include Thai tea.


The main donut I was looking to try is the instagram-famous unicorn donut and panda donut. With a simple hashtag search, users can find hundreds of photos published by people who have visited.


With a price tag of $4.50, the unicorn donut was the most expensive of the two, but both were of reasonable size.


The taste of the donuts was surprisingly fresh for the time that I chose to visit. I was able to witness one of the workers filling up one of the trays with a new batch of pastries. The donut texture was something I personally would consider perfect. It was a mix and crispy yet soft, the dessert did not overpower my senses with a sweet flavor.


What keeps people coming back? There are many reasons, but I know that after the phenomenal treatment I received, I know that I will travel to this place whenever I need a midnight snack.


With the large number of people that visit, including tourists and natives, the donut shop continues to move forward. Daniel Jung, a Los Angeles local,  gave his opinion on the popularity that the establishment has in the Los Angeles area.


“I think the owners have been able to stay on trend without trying,” Jung said. “ It amazes me how they have not expanded into other places after all the success, but I think that is what keeps people coming back again and again.”


California Donuts is located on 3540 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90020.