Q&A: Josh Danoff of Union Square Donuts


Prior to becoming a certified donut czar, Josh Danoff went into business with his siblings to bring kombucha-on-tap and fresh fruit popsicles to farmers’ markets. In 2013, Danoff co-founded Union Square Donuts with pastry chef Heather Schmidt, working out of a small shared space in the eponymous neighborhood. The duo’s substantial-yet-airy donuts won righteous fame on the farmers’ market circuit, leading to full-fledged shops in Somerville, Brookline, and a permanent stand at the Boston Public Market.

Boston’s best dish:

Crispy fried pork ribs at Kirkland Tap & Trotter. The burger at Highland Kitchen. German Chocolate Cake at Bronwyn. And anything made out of donuts.

Desert island spice:

Does coffee count as a spice? If so, I’d say I can’t live without coffee.

Kitchen playlist:

When I’m in the office, I usually stream 93.9 The River. When I’m in my car, I switch between sports radio, WBUR, and WGBH. When I’m in the Sprinter Van, old Metallica on tape. When we first got the Sprinter and realized that the tape deck worked, someone made a rule that we could only play Metallica—and rules are rules. And Spotify takes care of all of us at the shops.

Favorite food destination:

Three of the top ten meals I’ve had in my life were in Kyoto, Japan.

Cooking inspiration:

I feel I am becoming like my grandfather, whose idea of cooking was taking people out to dinner.


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