I've been on the lookout for years for the best bakeries, which are on the decline as more people buy their donuts from grocery stores and gas stations. And to be specific, I'm not looking for a French bakery or something frou frou (no Rustica, Salty Tart, and so on), but a good solid bakery with cake donuts, maple fried, long johns, and the like.
My favorite is Emily's Bakery in Hastings, but Hastings is too far away just for a donut run. Their donuts are pitch perfect and they have some treats that no one else seems to have, like Holland Cream Sticks (oh yum!). They also have my grandma's favorite: peanut cakes (white cake with a light frosting coated in chopped peanuts).
I've been to P.J. Murphy's and can't recommend it. Their chunky frostings put me off. Their selection seems small too and their donuts mediocre in general.
Where else should I be sure to go? Trips to the Shakopee Bakery and New Prague's bakery (not sure of its name) are in my near future, but what about in the nearer metro area?