Dynamo Donuts

Overall Rating: 7.650

Address: 2760 24th St.
Cross Street(s): Hampshire St.
City, State ZIP: San Francisco, CA 94110
Neighborhood: Mission
Phone: 415.920.1978
Hours: Tu-Sa 7am-5pm; Su 9am-4pm
Type of Establishment: Bakery (Chain)
Cafe Rating: 7.20
Barista: 8
Savvy: 8
Ambiance: 5
Presentation: 8
Consistency: Consistent
Espresso Machine: La Marzocco
Coffee Rating: 8.10
Aroma: 8
Body: 8
Brightness: 8
Crema: 8
Flavor: 8
Taster's Correction: 0.5
Size: M
Primary Taste: Smoky
Coffee Beans: Four Barrel Coffee
Cup Manufacturer: Nuova Point
Price: $2.00
Last Update: 08/07/2010
First Reviewed: 09/20/2008
Notes: Kiosk; Outdoor Seating

This high-end donut purveyor may not have espresso in their name, but they take it as seriously as their $2 donuts. (Donuts that your grandmother would not recognize as a donut - more of a round cake - but enough to bring out the inner Homer Simpson in everyone.) There's a row of chairs on the sidewalk for outdoor seating, but otherwise this is just a tight kiosk with an awning at times when the morning rush hour backroom is closed - and an on-staff barista that will ask you to mind the store while he or she goes to the restroom. Here they stick to some high-quality ingredients: Four Barrel Friendo Blendo coffee, Clover organic milk, etc. Using a four-group La Marzocco Linea (a machine that the Four Barrel Coffee folks rumoredly believe pulls better shots than they have), they take their time and make deliberate shots of espresso with a mottled medium- and dark-brown crema of a good, but occasionally uneven, consistency and some real thickness. The crema is a bit congealed and separates from the liquid coffee - breaking up what should otherwise be an emulsion. It has a strong brightness that's often pleasant without being too acidic (sometimes it is strong enough for some to differ). Oddly enough, we like their original shots of Stumptown Hairbender slightly better - given that they switched to Four Barrel once they got their roasting operations up in early 2009. Their Hairbender shots had an even fresher, more intense brightness, a semi-syrupy consistency, and a strongly pungent flavor that are muted with the Friendo Blendo. But just when we were ready to call Four Barrel a step down, the quality has improved here in flavor, brightness, and even crema (especially with their top morning barista) to bridge any gap.