If you’re looking for some sweet and savory baked goods in Tustin, then you probably already know about Mr. Holmes Bakehouse at Union Market. They’re the ones who opened earlier this year with a variety of donuts, crossaints (including a pretty awesome one filled with smoked salmon), cookies and other pastries, but they only recently added an item that many probably would’ve expected them to have from the beginning: donut holes.
Technically, they’re called “Donut Drops” on Mr. Holmes’ menu, but a round ball of fried dough covered in granulated sugar is going to be a good time no matter how they’re named. But while the donut bites themselves are certainly nothing to scoff at — they’re every bit as wonderfully sweet and textured as those offered at other artisanal bakeries and trendy restaurants — the real highlight rests in the dipping sauces.
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Whether you opt to go with the dark (64% dark, to be exact) chocolate or the raspberry shortbread sauce, you’ll be getting a small cup of the kind of delightful flavor that you’ll probably want to put on every dessert and sweet treat from here on out. The decadent dark chocolate is more than enough to suit the tastebuds of any chocolate lover, while the raspberry provides an equally luxurious — but still pleasantly fruity — alternative for those looking for a less traditional approach.
Although it might not exactly be reinventing the wheel, adding the donut balls (and more importantly the sauces) to Mr. Holmes’ menu certainly gives a little more diversity in how people consume their delectably sweet carbs. It’s also not out of the question for them to evolve over time into something that’s even more of a culinary experience than just simply dunkable donut spheres — particularly considering some other trendy bake shops have started doing things like injecting their donut holes with various fillings and/or utilizing different toppings.
At just a few bucks for three Donut Drops and your choice of sauce, there’s really not much of a reason not to try out at least one (if not two) bite-sized dough boats. Considering the amount of donut shops strewn throughout Southern California at this point, it’s really hard to stand out from the crowd, but Mr. Holmes certainly makes its case as one of the better mid-range options that won’t hurt your wallet too badly but still allow you to feel superior to those who purchase their confections from the expectedly greasy places in every older shopping center. As an added benefit, you’ll almost definitely have plenty of sauce to dip other donuts, croissants, or whatever else you pick up from the various hipster stalls at the Union Market.
Mr. Holmes' Bakehouse, 2493 Park Ave., Tustin, (714) 380-0418