Best Doughnuts - 2005
LaMar's Donuts - CLOSED
For 43 years Ray Lamar woke up saying, "Time to make the doughnuts." In the summer of 2003, he finally hung up his apron at the age of 87. By that time, the single doughnut shop he opened in a converted gas station in downtown Kansas City had expanded into 30-plus shops throughout the Midwest and South. St. Louis has one tucked away in an Olivette strip mall, and it's got its devotees, but overall few seem to know about it. Oh, what the masses are missing! LaMar's boasts a whopping 75 varieties of doughnut, with about a third of them available on any given day. Ray's Original Glazed is the size of your head and is made fresh daily with no preservatives. (Side note: Get to the store in midafternoon, when they're about to close shop and toss the remaining doughnuts, and try to sweet-talk some freebies.) LaMar's Bars are so long and thick, they probably give many men a complex, while the cinnamon rolls could stand in for Frisbees. But size isn't all that matters here: These doughnuts are light, fresh and so damn sweet.