MADISON, Wis.— Wisconsin has a new king donut shop.
Well, it's not really new, but this local hot spot is getting some time in the limelight.
Business Insider ranked the top donut spots in each state nationwide. Madison’s Greenbush Bakery won Wisconsin.
This isn’t a shock to Madisonians; Greenbush has been a staple for more than 20 years.
On a good day, you can smell the sweets before you even walk through the door.
It smells even better in the back, where the staff is working. The fryers are boiling, and the dough is dropped in every few minutes. Other employees are working with dough, putting fritters together.
Somehow, they barely notice the heavenly smell anymore. “You just get used to it,” they say.
“My grandparents started Greenbush Bakery 24 years ago, down on Regent Street, right by Camp Randall,” says Taylor Carlson, general manager of Greenbush Bakery.
They’ve since moved from that Regent Street location, just a block or two down Regent. They also have a shop on Madison’s east side, near East Towne Mall.
“My grandpa, with a business partner, originally bought a run-down bakery… It was kind of dark-days in the beginning of the business,” Carlson says. “A lot of broken equipment, and dirty and grimy. Getting it up to standards of what he wanted it to be, was a challenge. But he was the perfect person for it.”
With years of hard work, the shop was a success. On a weekend morning, you’ll see a line out the door as people wait to get inside for their favorite donut.
That’s changed a bit thanks to the pandemic.
“With people [not] going to the office, or larger events, people coming in are only getting like a half dozen donuts or a dozen donuts,” Carlson says. “We don't have a lot of larger orders going out the door.”
Still, they’ve managed to survive so far thanks to the loyalty of customers, and what Carlson calls an “all-star" team.
They run their wholesale production out of the east side location, and that’s turned out to be a success. Right now, their products are sold at Madison-area grocery stores.
Carlson hopes to someday have Greenbush treats in grocery stores in Milwaukee, Appleton and Green Bay.