Hole Foods

California doughnuts get the Chicago treatment

"Our goal was to open a true mainstream coffee and doughnut shop that's not predicated on over-the-top novelties," says Rich Labriola. He's the co-owner of Wicker Park's new Stan's Donuts & Coffee, an offshoot of the L.A. chain.

With simple, well-executed doughnuts ($2-4) such as the vibrant pistachio lemon old fashioned and the vanilla glazed doughnut studded with sprinkles, a selection of Intelligentsia coffees and teas, and free Wi-Fi, Stan's manages to be just that.

Pistachio lemon old fashioned doughnut

Labriola, president of the local Labriola Baking Company, teamed up with Stan's founder Stan Berman to bring one of Los Angeles' most enduring and well-loved doughnut shops to Chicago–with a twist.

Labriola's bread starter is the doughnut base, which creates a rich base flavor and a fluffier, more complex texture that you won't find at other doughnut shops–or even in the City of Angels.

The retro-chic aesthetic is reminiscent of a June Cleaver-era diner, with pops of bubble gum pink and green and a colorful array of KitchenAid mixers used as décor. At the front of the store stands a display case filled with over a dozen varieties of baked goods, ranging from pockets stuffed with Biscoff Cookie Spread to twisted cinnamon pretzels to glazed old fashioned doughnuts.

The wooden communal table–with its retro sage green stools–invites shopgoers to take off their coats and stay a while. But it's the lingering, sweet smell of fresh-baked doughnuts that demands it.