Mister Donut in the USA
If you’ve traveled to Japan, you’ve probably spotted a Mister Donut shop, or even been seduced by their super cute commercials. They’re a traditional doughnut shop with some fusiony Japanese offerings, like matcha flavoring, and my boyfriend is obsessed with their cake doughnuts!
Above, Mister Donut in Japan, from our trip last year. (Planning a trip to Japan? Click here to see all of my Japan content). And yes, they’re somehow selling doughnuts to women by literally adding a cronut to the model’s waistline.
While the goofy name seems tailor-made for Japan, the chain was actually founded in the U.S. in 1955, expanding throughout the country, then into Japan in the 1980s. When Dunkin’ Donuts’ parent company acquired the U.S. arm of Mister Donut in 1990, most franchisees chose to change their name to Dunkin’ Donuts, and nowadays there’s only one Mister Donut left in the states.
Looking for some Japanese nostalgia, we made a pilgrimage to the lone Mister Donut holdout, in the small town of Godfrey, Illinois:
We picked out a selection of the cake doughnuts–cherry and regular glazed, along with plain–and holy cow is that sugar glaze intense! Clearly they don’t share their Japanese counterparts’ preference for more moderately sweet baked goods.
Don’t despair though, the plain cake doughnut was good, and our companion said his sprinkle doughnut wasn’t nearly as sweet.
Beyond the branding, you won’t find much in common with the Japanese shops, but if you’re passing through Godfrey, Illinois, this cute vintage shop is worth the stop– if only for the bragging rights of having visited the only Mister Donut in the U.S.