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Food & Drink

In Search of the Buttermilk Drop

Donuts. Those little sugary, doughy, pieces of heaven that make 8 a.m. Monday morning meetings bearable. Glazed, glazed chocolate, powdered, jelly-filled, crème-filled, frosted, frosted with sprinkles, cake donuts, donut holes, éclairs, bear claws – we’ll take ’em all.

The Buttermilk Drop: Only in New Orleans

However, if you ask most locals what is the very best donut ever made, they’ll probably tell you the buttermilk drop. Excuse me, the buttermilk drop from McKenzie’s Pastry Shoppe. Which, when you think about it, is no more than a rolled up cake donut dunked into glaze icing. However, when that rolled up cake donut hits your mouth, something magical happens.

Find the iconic buttermilk drop (left) at Buttermilk Drop Bakery (Photo: Rebecca Todd)

Unfortunately, the original McKenzie’s bakery closed down in 2001, leaving us buttermilk drop lovers in a state of melancholy that rivals Hamlet’s. But fear not, donut dears, there are at least two places that have opened up since Hurricane Katrina that specializes in these tasty treats: The aptly named Buttermilk Drop Bakery in the Gentilly/Seventh Ward area and Tastee’s/McKenzie’s Pastry Shoppe in the Lakeview area.

While Tastee’s boasts the original McKenzie’s buttermilk drops, the fact that there’s an entire bakery devoted to these delectable pieces of heaven is nothing to be ignored.

You can’t go wrong with either, and if the buttermilk drops don’t catch your eye, there’s always Tastee’s Cinnamon Rolls which has that thick icing that has to be illegal in some places it’s so good.  Or there’s the Strawberry, cream-cheese, or chocolate beignets, that other donut, from Buttermilk Drop Bakery that would definitely satisfy any donut craving. Until the next Monday morning meeting.

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