A doughnut destination from up north fits right in down south

Photo by Kathy Tran

The name Top Pot came from an accident involving a vintage neon sign that hung above a Seattle-area Chinese Restaurant. 

Mark and Michael Klebeck came across an amazing deal: a used neon sign that once hung above Top Spot Chinese restaurant. They didn’t know what they might use it for, but they had to have it. When they loaded the sign in the back of the truck and drove off with it, they heard a loud “thud” from the truck bed. The “S” fell off while they were driving, and “Top Pot” was born. But they still had to develop the concept, so the sign sat rusting in their parents’ backyard for four years before they finally put it to use. 

What makes a good doughnut?

Old-fashioned: “You want it to be moist on the inside and crispy on the outside.”

Raised (yeasted) doughnut: “You want it to be fluffy, not dense.”

Cake doughnut: “You want it to be moist.”

During that time, the brothers experimented with recipes that were passed down from their grandmother. 

“One recipe in particular was a yeast-raised dough that had a slight sweetness to it,” Mark says.  “This could be fried on the stove top and it was fantastic with jam fillings as well as a variety of simple glazes and icings.”

From there, their recipes got better until they were ready to launch their café concept. 

When it was time to branch out of their home state of Washington, they knew Dallas was their next stop. They opened three locations in the Dallas area: one in Preston Hollow, one on Greenville Avenue and one in Richardson. 

The store on Hillcrest is cozy and inviting. With warm wood and bookshelves lining the walls, customers sit and stay awhile. It’s comfortable for working on a laptop or bringing the kids in for a snack. The smell of warm sugar mingling with coffee intoxicates. This location makes the doughnuts for all three Dallas-area locations.

Not much is different between the Dallas locations and the ones in Washington. Dallas stores use coffee beans roasted in small batches in Seattle. Dallasites do have particular tastes. Blueberry is a year-round flavor in Dallas because it is so popular, but it’s a seasonal flavor in Washington. 

“It’s interesting the popularity of the doughnuts are different in Seattle than they are down here,” district manager Karla Fife says. “Like in Seattle, maple bars are really popular, and down here? Not so much. Maple’s not a thing in Texas? “I don’t know.” 

So if you pop into Top Pot, be sure to order a blueberry fritter like a real Texan

What to try

 The Chai Spiced Doughnut is only available in Dallas. Pair it with a cup of coffee for breakfast or an afternoon pick-me-up. 

Top Pot Doughnuts

Address: 8611 Hillcrest Ave.

Hours: Monday-Friday, 6:30 a.m.– 5 p.m., and Saturday-Sunday, 7 a.m.-5 p.m.


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