J.Co Donuts & Coffee
1/2 I wonder if people in Malaysia read about fast food sensations on NYC blogs? Probably not. I keep tabs on a few Singaporean and Malaysian blogs, and one of the things I find most fascinating are foreign trends. In the mid-2000s I kept hearing about Rotiboy, which I eventually tried.
Last year I started noticing internet chatter about Indonesian donut chain J.Co. I was particularly amused by their use of outré ingredients like cheese. And the alcapone donut combined with a bullet hole motif on the company’s cardboard boxes was kind of sassy.
So, when I was unexpectedly faced with a big J.Co Donuts café with seating (I always imagined them as a take out counter) at Bugis Junction right after a fun stop at Raffles Hospital, a block away, I had to sample the wares even though I’d just eaten sweet, buttery kaya toast.
One vacation problem is that I use the break as a license to snack with hedonistic abandon. I’d buy anything that caught my fancy whether or not I had an appetite for it at the time. Consequently, lots of snacks sat around the hotel room not getting eaten at their prime.
I thought getting four donuts to share with another was being kind of gluttonous, but I had nothing on the two teenage boys in front of me in line who got three donuts apiece on a plate to eat right there on the spot.
These donuts, mocha and tiramisu, had a glossy unusually thick layer of frosting that would be gooey if fresh and warm. When I tasted these the next morning, they were still good but the chocolate had hardened like Magic Shell. It was almost like having a candy layer atop a donut that wanted to flake off in chunks.
Green tea tasted like green tea; I’m more into the color than the flavor. The most interesting donut by far was the cheese. James was scared of it, but I thought it had grotesque charm. I actually prefer hole-in-the-middle non-filled donuts just for the sweet bready yeastiness. This has all that softness with a salty melted parmesan-esque (funny, I just looked up their own description and it's "New Zealand cheese." I told you Southeast Asia was obsessed with Kiwi dairy) coating. I expected something more bagel-y, but nope, it was a genuine donut encased in cheese just like it looked.
It wouldn’t make a half-bad breakfast treat, especially if it had some bacon crumbles sprinkled on. Though being Southeast Asia, they’d most likely use “floss,” the ubiquitous flaked jerky that shows up in strange places.
J.Co Donuts & Coffee * Bugis Junction, 200 Victoria St., Singapore