November 2022: So so sad to report that Colonial Donuts has closed permanently. waah! 🙁
2020 Update: STILL ONE OF MOD BETTY’s FAVE DONUT SHOPS IN MASS EVER!
Original 2009 Post:
You would never know from looking at the unassuming mansard roofed shop, but the Colonial Donut Shop in downtown Taunton Mass is a Retro Roadmap gem, serving up donuts and camaraderie since 1954.
Because it is somewhat near my sister’s house it seemed like the right place to begin “Auntie Beth And All The Retro Roadkids (with a dad and uncle thrown in for good measure) Day Of Fun”.
As we gathered at the front of the building I noticed that the counter inside was pretty packed, but when we invaded the place like the chaotic herd we were, the swell folks who worked there kindly got us some seats together at the counter towards the back. This was probably a good place for us all to be, as the Retro Roadkids were in high gear and that was before the sugary donuts!
The interior of Colonial Donuts (or Do-Nuts as the sign says) is a riot of striped walls, scalloped edging and colorful swivel counter stools. The counter weaves its way around the entirety of the shop, with seating for at least 25 I’d say. The place was pleasantly full of locals and regulars, all chatting and kidding with each other. As soon as we all sat down we were part of the friendly mix, and the older folks were charmed by the RRKids.
When we were there just past 10am one of the gentlemen at the counter said they had been slammed since 5:30 in the morning, which I took to be a good sign. I’ve read online that the store is owned by a pair of brothers, so I’m thinking this was one of them. I am thinking this handsome gent below is another of them:
Both Retro RoadGirls wanted powdered sugar donuts, but I didn’t see any in the case. One of the really nice ladies behind the counter- heck everyone here was nice- went in back and shook plenty of white powdery sugar over some freshly made donuts. Totally delicious!
I agree with one of the RRGirls that the best part about their donuts is that they were crispy on the outside but soft and fluffy on the inside. That bit of a crust was a tasty treat, and I was proud when she declared her donut to be better than one from DD. The boys got chocolate cake donuts and those were a hit as well.
I’m not the only one smitten with Colonial Donuts, as the shop was given a Citation by the City of Taunton, signed by the mayor on their 50th year in business.
Be it known that the City of Taunton extends its congratulations to Colonial Do-Nut Shop, In Recognition Of Fifty Years of Delicious Donuts, Coffee and Good Cheer. Thank you for your generosity to our community. May you have many more years of continued success.
Amen to that!
I was amazed when I looked online for more info about this great shop that I couldn’t find a thing. Let’s hope that this entry to Retro Roadmap remedies this and people everywhere can learn what a great little shop this is!
Richard @ The Bewildered BritDecember 3, 2009 at 10:28 pm
Looks heavenly! I love the colours they’ve done the interior in.
Now, now I want doughnuts.
Mod Betty / Retro RoadmapDecember 3, 2009 at 10:47 pm
Richard, I want donuts too! But now I want only the good kind, from places like this. Luckily (or unluckily for my waistline) we’ve got a place somewhat close by here at home that makes good homemade donuts, so I don’t need to do a Retro Roadtrip to Mass for some tasty treats!
Richard @ The Bewildered BritDecember 3, 2009 at 11:27 pm
There used to be a lovely donut place next to where I used to live. It took an immense effort of will to be able to walk past it and not get a coffee and a donut.
Where I live now, there’s nothing like that. I feel a bit sad, really: it’d be nice to have the temptation right there!
That way, I could feel virtuous (and my girth would thank me) every time I resisted. But I’d also get to have fun once a week or so when I’d give in on a whim!
Mod Betty / Retro RoadmapDecember 4, 2009 at 10:13 pm
Richard – it’s a balancing act for sure – we could all be skinny and virtuous but then all the cool old food places would close! I guess I’d rather indulge occasionally and chalk it up to sustaining my local – or someone’s local- economy! I’m lucky that Retro Roadhusband likes to eat as much as I do (much more actually) so I usually have help in that area 🙂
Mod Betty / Retro RoadmapDecember 4, 2009 at 10:15 pm
The colorful interior is such a surprise when compared to the outside of the building (see my post on China Kitchen for better look)- I am glad I reminded myself not to judge a book by its cover!
LoriDecember 3, 2009 at 11:23 pm
Beth, Thanks so much for such a wonderful review of Colonial Do-Nuts! It was always a treat for us growing up in Taunton (in the good old days) to get the chance to sit at the counter and have a freshly baked piece of heaven! There aren’t many places like this left, and knowing that Colonial still exists, makes this Taunton-Girl’s heart happy!
Mod Betty / Retro RoadmapDecember 4, 2009 at 10:14 pm
LRD I always think of you when I’m in Taunton, especially when I drive past the Roseland ballroom! Wish I had taken photos of it before it became a Chinese restaurant. Do stop by Colonial Donuts next time you’re home and encourage your “homies” to do the same- tell the swell folks there that you read about the place on the internet courtesy of Retro Roadmap!
Larry CultreraDecember 4, 2009 at 5:19 am
I’ve driven by too many times to count. I would certainly be tempted now although Joe’s Diner is right down the street. Joe’s used to be much closer to where I live when it was Diane’s Diner, or Low Bridge Diner, or Ingraham’s Diner in Everett.
Mod Betty / Retro RoadmapDecember 4, 2009 at 10:09 pm
Larry – I admit I had dismissed this shop before based on the generic mansard shingling of the outside but am glad I learned to look past the cover. The more time I spend in Taunton the more cool things I see. Unfortunately I see a lot of them closing and disappearing, so I think I’ll be spending more time up there during my next visit!
PANereoMarch 5, 2010 at 2:37 pm
So happy to read such nice words about Colonial Donuts! And the pictures! We used to get a dozen every Sunday when I was growing up in Taunton during the 50’s & 60’s — I’ve lived in CA since 1970, but never miss a chance to stop by when we go back to visit — Last April when we were back, I stopped by twice to enjoy the wonderful donuts and say hi to Mike and his brother — They still remember me — What great folks!
Check out my attempt to describe the wonderfulness of their donuts!
Mod Betty / Retro RoadmapMarch 5, 2010 at 6:37 pm
so glad my post brought back fond memories, and thanks for supporting a cool local place like this even though you live so far away!
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