Uniquely Named Donut Shop Opens Pop-Up at DeLuca’s on Charles Street

A donut shop with a uniquely local name has set up shop as a pop-up inside DeLuca’s Market on Charles Street.

​Mass Hole Donuts, which has a brick-and-mortar location in Somerville’s Teele Square, took over the small space inside the store on Friday, May 3, which was previously the temporary home to Teuscher Chocolates.

The company bakes six different donut-hole selections each day in its Somerville kitchen from more than 100 different options. Many are locally themed, such as the Green Monster, a filled brioche donut topped with emerald, vanilla glaze, tasted cocoanut, and lime custard; or the Copley Cheesecake Crunch, a poppyseed cake donut garnished with cream cheese frosting, butter cookie crumbs, and a cherry on top. All of the toppings used are premium ingredients, including Belgian chocolate sprinkles, real pistachios, and even apple chunks in their Johnny Appleseed cider donut holes.

​“It’s all about variety,” said Peter Gladstone, the company’s co-owner. “You just want one or two bites – you don’t want the whole donut.”

And with a business name like ‘Mass Hole Donuts,’ Gladstone said they also have to deliver a quality product to avoid being dismissed as a just half-serious company with a farcical name.

“We’re fanatical about the quality of our donuts,” he said. “We throw batches out if they don’t meet our expectations because we have a very powerful brand name that’s enough to pull people in.”

Gladstone, a longtime Arlington resident, now splits his time between his regular job as a senior advisor at Harvard Innovation Labs in Cambridge, where he mentors students on their start-up ventures, and Mass Hole Donuts, which he describes as his “passion project.” While he isn’t a baker, Gladstone said he pitches in anywhere else he can at Mass Hole Donuts, from running the cash register to washing dishes.

Mass Hole Donuts was operating a pop-up location in the Seaport earlier this year, and when it closed in April, the business was looking for a new location for a pop-up. Gladstone credits some close relatives who live on Beacon Hill for suggesting the neighborhood, specifically DeLuca’s on Charles Street, as a prime spot for their next pop-up.

“The neighborhood has been so welcoming, not only the residents but also other shop owners,” Gladstone said of the warm reception they’ve received so far on Beacon Hill. “We’ve already become a destination, even though it’s not like Charles Street needs any more people, but we’re attracting a foodie crowd.”

Gladstone said the pop-up has also allowed Mass Hole Donuts to move into a coveted neighborhood, like Beacon Hill, which otherwise might not out of reach for them.

​“This is a desirable location for us that we’d never be able to afford otherwise,” he said. “Charles Street is one of the most iconic streets in Boston that normally wouldn’t be attainable for a one-stop bakery in Somerville.”

At DeLuca’s, Mass Hole Deliveries is still working on logistics, but ideally, they’d be receiving donuts by 9 a.m. Tuesday through Sunday. (The pop-up is closed on Mondays.) They typically receive two deliveries from Somerville each day, with the donuts often selling out before their targeted 7 p.m. closing time.

“We never sell day-old donuts,” said Gladstone. “They always have to be fresh.”

Mass Hole Donut’s pop-up at DeLuca’s is now set to run through mid-summer, but that timeline could also be extended.

“If it makes sense for both of us, we’ll keep it going,” said Gladstone.

Visit massholedonuts.com to learn more about the company.

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