Baker Dan Rosene wasn’t exactly allowed to play video games as a kid, but whenever he could play at a friend’s place, he was crazy about the racing game “Super Mario Kart” — especially the much-loved course called Rainbow Road.
That’s the inspiration behind a new doughnut shop’s technicolor pastry that sells out whenever it hits the counter.
The Rainbow Road at Cardigan Donuts in the Minneapolis skyway is a tie-dyed long john that harks back to Nintendo games and Lisa Frank binders. Replicating the brightly colored world that children of the ‘90s grew up in, it’s a doughnut dripping in nostalgia — and white chocolate frosting, gold-dusted walnuts and Lucky Charms marshmallows.
The process is laborious, as far as doughnuts go. Rosene has to dye and roll out six separate layers of dough. Then he piles them together, chops the whole thing up and mashes the pieces back together.
It’s the only time Rosene, 29, will “break the rule” of not adding artificial ingredients. “There is no natural way to get these colors,” he said.
Other wild offerings at Cardigan (which is located on City Center’s second floor) include a chicken-and-waffle doughnut with crackling chicken skin as a garnish, and a hot pepper doughnut that evokes spicy Red Hots candies.
“Anything that reminds you of being a kid: grandma’s cooking, Sunday picnics, anything that generates a positive memory” is fair game for doughnut inspiration, Rosene said.