Photo by Toby M

Vegans in Japan: you will go nuts for Good Town Donuts’ vegan rings!

For vegans living in Japan, life is still without many of the simple pleasures that we don’t give a second thought to in the states. Sitting down in a restaurant without having to worry whether there will be options free from animal products, or stepping in to a convenience store and browsing the selection of vegan cookies, seems a long way off. Yet, Japan is undeniably taking leisurely steps towards accommodating the non carnivores amongst us. In fact one simple pleasure near and dear to this writer’s heart: waking up late on a Sunday, stumbling to the local bakery and enjoying what remains of the morning with a fluffy donut and steaming mug of coffee, is already available for residents of Tokyo.

Granted, the stumbling will probably require the aid of a train, but that’s a small price to pay for the freshly baked, delicious vegan donuts that are being baked for you right now in Omotesando’s Good Town Donuts.

Good Town Donuts and the Little Bakery

For the uninitiated, Good Town Donuts seeks to serve up authentic US style rings to the people of Tokyo. Their donuts are the real deal too: plump, fluffy and enriched with that yeasty flavor that is the mark of a great nut. Even the most contrarian New Yorker couldn’t take a bite without a nostalgic smile spreading across their lips.

And just like the best bakeries in NYC, and the rest of the states for that matter, you have to veer off main street to get to Good Town Donuts. The store is nestled in the narrow side streets that twist like tubes of unbaked dough off Omotesando, Tokyo’s leafy high-end shopping street. In fact it’s nestled like the rich custard filling of a Boston Cream inside its sister store, The Little Bakery Tokyo, which is what patrons should be on the lookout for.

The Little Bakery and Good Town Donuts’ charming exterior brings neighborhood bakeries from the states to Tokyo| Photographer: Toby M

Thankfully, the Little Bakery stands out from its modern concrete neighbors, making it easy to find. It looks just like a small town neighborhood bakery from the states, with its wood panelled facade and vast, clear store windows that show off the delicacies within. I recommend any visitors take a moment and enjoy the childish pleasure of peering through the window and soaking up the beautiful baked goods waiting to be devoured, before stepping inside.

The Little Bakery’s irresistible spread| Photographer: Toby M

Good Town Donuts are Damn Good

It’s easy to get distracted in The Little Bakery, with freshly baked breads, pastries, pies and cookies - and yes, that includes vegan goodies - vying for your attention, but remember why you’re here: the donuts!

These take centre stage in the charming store, lined up beneath golden lights in a glass display case, like glossy jewels.

Good Town Donuts basked in a golden glow| Photographer: Toby M

Good Town Donuts offer their freshly baked donuts in a variety of flavors, many of which are available in Vegan variants. Maple and walnut, mango, cinnamon sugar, chocolate, and green tea flavored Uji Matcha donuts are just a few of the options on both the standard and vegan menu.

Sicilian Lemon and Poppy Seed and Raspberry and Pistachio flavored donuts| Photographer: Toby M

Ogling the assorted flavors and struggling over how to choose from an assortment that all look too delicious is part of the fun. Especially when, as a vegan, the luxury of choice is not something easy to come by in Japan. Savor the moment, before savoring the flavor.

Tangy Mango “Smile” glaze and Uji Matcha Green Tea glazed donuts | Photographer: Toby M

Good Town’s donuts nail the base of their vegan rings which have a fluffy texture and sweet, moorish taste. The assorted glazes add extra layers of intense and delicious flavors. The Maple Walnut for example is a beautiful balance of rich maple and nutiness. Likewise, fans of fruit flavored donuts will go bananas for the Mango option which has a wonderfully tanginess, so addictive that you will want to eat two or three.

The Good Town Donut trophy cabinet| Photographer: Toby M

Priced at around ¥450 each, the scrumptious jumbo rings are worth every penny to fill that donut shaped hole at the center of your heart. Order several and a large coffee, plonk yourself down at one of their cute diner style tables, or a bench outside in the sun, and savor leavened heaven, free from animal products but bursting with flavor.

The Little Bakery and Good Town Donuts sweets make it impossible to order only one item| Photographer: Toby M

Good Town Donuts also provide take out boxes if you want to order a half dozen to bring home with you.

Store Details

Good Town Donuts relocated, along with its sister store, The Little Bakery, to the brand new location pictured above in all it’s charming glory. Find them at the following address:

新店舗 150-0001 東京都渋谷区神宮前6-13-6

NEW SHOP 6-13-6 Jingumae,Shibuya-ku,Tokyo Japan 150-0001

By - Toby M.