I’ve never been to Hawaii, but when I do take a trip across the Pacific I hope it tastes as good as Mahalo's Coffee & Mini Donuts.
The West Des Moines coffee and doughnut shop, tucked away in the Somerfield Village Center at 4800 Mills Civic Parkway, offers small doughnuts with a big punch. Flavors such as a caramel glazed “apple tiki,” a maple-infused “bacon sunrise” and the vanilla and caramel “cinnamon lava” come packed ready to send you into a sugar-induced coma with each bite. The “island style” miniature bites cost $4.49 for a half-dozen.
Twenty-two different doughnut flavors are offered; I’d suggest not to skip the “strawberry surf,” which comes with strawberry glaze, whipped cream and topped with crushed wafers … a combination worthy of Homer Simpson, the world’s undisputed doughnut king.
The best part of Mahalo’s? They deep fry the doughnuts right in front of you. Owner Troy Schall said he evolved the shop from a Jordan Creek Mall kiosk to a full-fledged coffee and doughnut shop, which boasts beach-themed items on the walls, table and countertop, in 2015. The machine can deep fry up to 800 doughnuts an hour, Schall said.
The shop’s coffee comes straight from Kona or Maui, Schall said. Menu options include a hot or iced mocha, with flavors such as the white chocolate and raspberry “rainbow warrior,” the chocolate and cookie dough “black rock” and the white chocolate and cheesecake “nutty paniolo.” Those (like myself) who want to skip the added flavors and go straight for caffeine can try the rotating Hawaiian brew ($3.70 for a 20-ounce cup), which featured a macadamia nut and vanilla bean brew on my visit.
For those not interested in entering a doughnut-forced sugar coma, the shop offers lunch options such as a ham and Swiss sandwich with honey, a chicken salad or an egg salad.
Mahalo’s Coffee and Mini Donuts
Where: 4800 Mills Civic Parkway #105, West Des Moines
Hours: 6:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Friday; 7 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday; 8 a.m.-noon Sunday.
More information: mahaloscoffee.com