Blue Star fills hole in center of Westside's eating scene
A local fan favorite, Blue Star Donuts, is moving into Beaverton.
Since it opened its first store in December 2015, fans of the "Donuts for Grownups" have been begging Blue Star to come to the suburbs, according to Katie Poppe, founder and chief executive officer of the specialty doughnut company. She said she is thrilled to finally be opening a location in Beaverton.
"Don't worry, we're coming, we didn't forget," Poppe said.
She said Blue Star hopes to open its doors by late October, adding exciting flavors to the mix at Progress Ridge TownSquare, just in time for the holidays.
The Beaverton location will feature the same doughnuts, accompanied by Coava Coffee, as the other six Portland stores. The seventh location will be larger than the other six shops, with plenty of seating.
Blue Star earned the moniker "Donuts for Grownups" in part for their adventurous twists on childhood favorites — for example, a peanut butter-powdered jelly doughnut that contains a kick of habanero in the marionberry jelly. Several of their confections are crafted with alcohol, such as the Blueberry Bourbon Basil or the Cointreau Creme Brulee — a sugar-crusted raised shell filled with creamy vanilla pudding, from which protrudes a pipette of orange-liqueur.
Other flavors, such as the Orange Olive Oil cake doughnut, are sophisticated in composition, yet just as appealing to kids as they are to adults, Poppe said.
The gourmet doughnuts are all crafted at a central kitchen to ensure consistent quality.
Once a store sells out of doughnuts, they close shop for the day. This is because the dough they use for many of their creations takes 18 hours to make from start to finish.
The brioche-based dough — made with loads of butter — sets Blue Star apart from other traditional doughnut shops. Made from scratch every day, the not-too-sweet dough acts as a simple stage upon which the unique glazes and fillings can shine.
Blue Star also makes vegan cake doughnuts and buttermilk cake doughnuts, using only high-quality, locally sourced ingredients across the board, the company said. It also often collaborates with other local vendors in its flavor creations.
Blue Star doesn't pretend to be everyone's doughnut shop — you won't find traditional maple bars or rainbow sprinkles at their shops as they don't use any artificial flavors or colors. And the doughnuts aren't cheap, at almost $40 for a baker's dozen.
The Blue Star model was inspired by a trip to Europe, where Poppe and her business partner visited many patisseries. They were charmed by the artful approach that the European bakeries took to their trade and wanted to bring that elegant experience back to the states — via the doughnut.
"It's nostalgic, it's familiar, we all love them," said Poppe of the distinctly American pastry, which for many is part of an office meeting ritual or a Sunday morning after-church routine.
She wasn't sure if people would go for the concept, she admitted.
"But Blue Star ... there's something really special about it," said Poppe of the response her company has received from customers.
Blue Star will be celebrating its golden birthday on Dec. 5.