With a random weekday off from work, I was on a mission to try Beiler's Donuts. It opened just over a year ago, filling the doughnut stand void in Reading Terminal and expanding the Pennnsylvania Dutch family's corner operation full of breads, pies, salads and pickles.
And what a delicious mission it was, as in a suddenly-competitive doughnut town, Beiler's is right up there with Federal Donuts, Frangelli's and others in my book.
First tip: don't be scared off by the line. It almost always wraps around the corner stall near the 12th & Arch entrance but moves very quickly. You can watch the entire doughnut-making process from your spot in line as you get hungrier by the second. See photos below for some of that experience; they really are made right in front you.
Second tip: Order a lot. At 90 cents each or $4.95 for a half dozen, it's absolutely worth trying more than one!
The apple harvest also delivers delicious apple filling, with soft, perfect vanilla icing and cinnamon dusted on top. The Boston creme was a solid rendition of the old standby, and you can't go wrong with the basic glazed, proving that it's really the standard, made-from-scratch Beiler's dough that makes this place special. The chocolate with sprinkles was the only unimpressive of the bunch - not because it was bad, but because it was just average.
I usually head straight to Famous 4th Street for cookies after my Reading Terminal lunches, but now I'll have to seriously debate a doughnut for dessert!
|Beiler's corner stand, near the 12th & Arch entrance|
|About one third of the options|
|Hand-stamping each doughnut with a nifty roller|
|Fillings ready to be stuffed|
|Doughnuts in the fryer|