[Photograph: Kate Bernot]

Even as the city acclimates to the idea of trendy doughnuts from fine dining vets, a $5 frosted ring of dough is still gutsy. But at 2 Sparrows, the six month old breakfast and lunch restaurant from Charlie Trotter's alums Greg Ellis and Steve Fladung, the price tag is almost justified. When the Lincoln Park restaurant first opened, attention centered on the signature maple-bacon doughnut and foie gras-cherry Pop-Tart, but a new tiramisu-flavored doughnut trumps both of those creations.

It's not light by any means, but since you're choosing between the pork belly biscuit and chilaquiles for brunch anyway, you're probably not counting Weight Watchers points. As you tear the doughnut in half—diet or not, you're presumably still sharing—you'll notice that the sticky chocolate coating now covers most of your hands. It's more of an icing than a frosting, really, which melts just a bit atop the warm dough. That's a pleasant step up from the hard, cracked, how-long-have-these-sat-here icings on even some "gourmet" doughnuts. Then, an almost whipped interior reminds you subtly of a Boston creme filling, but lighter and less sugary, with just a hint of sourness like the mascarpone in a proper tiramisu.

The doughnut's only remarkable flaw is the lack of the coffee or espresso flavor that tiramisu boasts, but that's remedied with sips from your mug of Metropolis brew. While folks are still going gaga over the bacon doughnut craze (see even better versions at Nightwood and Doughnut Vault), the tiramisu flavor is the one to try as a precursor to that light breakfast you've been meaning to have at 2 Sparrows.

2 Sparrows

553 West Diversey Parkway, Chicago, IL 60614 (map)


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