Recently, I went away to Vegas for the weekend, and I rounded out the trip with a stop at Ronald’s Donuts, which is a Buddhist-run donut shop off of The Strip. While Vegas is not a great place to be a vegan, I wonder if most vegans who live there have thought of subsisting entirely off of these donuts. I almost surely would consider it if I were local. My favorite part of the entire experience was how much of an honest-to-goodness donut shop Ronald’s was. There were no fancy pictures on the wall or bamboo napkins. They even used styrofoam cups (which I have a little bit of a problem with, but they were kitschy so I can get past that. If Ronald’s were situated in LA, their bakery boxes would be emblazoned with their name and logo, there would be water features, and the display case would have been carefully lit and sparsely populated. Instead their case was teeming with donuts and the only decorative feature was an old man in the corner who just looked like he belonged in a donut shop.
This post brings up an important point that I like to make. There’s healthy food, and there’s vegan food, but the two are not always the same. In this case, these donuts were nearly undiscernable from “regular” donuts. That means they were full of sugar and fat, but it also means that it was a great way to enjoy true junk food without comprimising my ethical status. There are certain occassions in one’s life that call for donuts, and dissapointment is one of them. Don’t get me wrong, I had a great time in Vegas, it just wasn’t all that I hoped it would be when I went out. Since misery absolutely loves company, and mild-dissapointment craves it, I recruited a friend with no sorrows (but an amazing metabolism)to help me conduct a very, very scientific taste test of Ronald’s donuts.

The verdict:
By far the most amazing pastry had to be the bear claw, but the cinnamon roll was probably a close second. Their jelly donut was very good, but I would have liked a: a higher jelly to donut ratio and b: a more natural jam instead of a sugarfied gel. I also have to give a special shout-out to the apple fritter which, while being completely greasy and so heavy that I felt it the entire next day, was probably better than any apple fritter I have ever had. Since it’s the only vegan apple fritter I’ve ever had, I feel like the Buddhists deserve a real round of applause.