It's hard to believe that a city the size of Philly doesn't have a gourmet doughnut shop along the lines of Portland's Voodoo Doughnut, or New York's Doughnut Plant. The closest thing we have to a shop cranking our creative doughnuts is The Fractured Prune, a franchise started in Ocean City, Maryland, now with a handful of locations in Maryland, two locations in Delaware, and one location each in Ohio and Pennsylvania.
My once or twice yearly trips to the beaches of Delaware make the Rehoboth Beach Fractured Prune my best bet at sampling hot, haute doughnuts. It's been a long wait since last summer, but I finally got some Fractured Prune doughnuts this past weekend.
Go early, or else the shop is closed in the afternoon, as I sadly found out. And call in your order if you want more than a couple of doughnuts, as a friend schooled me when he woke up the next day at the crack of dawn to bring back three boxes of doughnuts — at least two of each specialty doughnut off their menu!
The Fractured Prune makes all of their doughnuts to order, starting with a single cake-style batter. Sorry, no yeast doughnuts at all. Once the doughnuts are fried, they get a dip in one of their many glaze flavors: honey, banana, chocolate, maple, cherry, strawberry, lemon, raspberry, orange, peanut butter, blueberry, mocha, mixed berry, mint, and caramel.
The doughnuts are then loaded with your choice of toppings: rainbow sprinkles, chocolate jimmies, coconut, peanuts, Oreo cookie, mini chocolate chips, graham cracker crumbs, powdered sugar, granulated sugar, and cinnamon sugar. Create your own combination or choose one of their specialty combos from the menu.This all sounds so freakin' fantastic, but, admittedly, I was not blown away by The Fractured Prune's doughnut, and, yes, I got to eat them while they were still hot, and pretty much sampled every variety from their specialty menu.
My only major disappointment is the flavored glazes. They're just too thin to provide a walloping flavor punch that a thicker frosting would. When I order a caramel dipped doughnut, I want to be punched in the face with caramel, not left wondering what this brown, sugary slick is. And is that blueberry? It's blue, but I'm not sure.
The doughnuts themselves are a bit smaller than a doughnut from Dunkin Donut, and are a more craggy and airy cake doughnut. No real complaint there, just noting the difference.
I think my year-long anticipation of a Fractured Prune doughnut may have built up unrealistic expectations, but I would not be unhappy to make a pit stop at The Fractured Prune on future beach trips. The Trail Mix with banana glaze loaded down with nuts, coconut, and chocolate jimmies would be my first choice.
The Fractured Prune
Locations in Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania and Ohio