BEST DOUGHNUTS Minneapolis 2000 -
There is a stretch of Johnson Street not far from I-35W that appears virtually untouched by time. An actual barber shop--i.e., not a salon--advertises with an actual striped pole. A neighborhood café serves lime phosphates and all-you-can-eat fries. A thrift store that hasn't succumbed to trendiness sells merchandise at prices that are thrifty. And in the middle of it all sits an establishment whose name alone will activate a salivary response and uncontrollable sugar lust in any Nordeaster: Sarah Jane's Bakery. There are no craisin beignets, no six-dollar amaretto-cream-filled croissants here, just good old-fashioned doughnuts (okay, with the occasional Polish or Scandinavian specialty thrown in--this is, after all, Nordeast). Sarah Jane's maple icing is good enough to eat by the bowlful, the glazed twists melt on the tongue like so many glucose snowflakes, and the fruit-filled Bismarcks will eliminate all memory of table manners in even the most refined. Sarah Jane's is closed Sundays, but doughnuts purchased on Friday afternoon will remain fresh long enough to complement your coffee and crosswords throughout the weekend.