ASBURY PARK, NJ – In our newest episode, HomeGrown visits Purple Glaze Donuts, an award-winning bakery on Summerfield Avenue. Open for four years in Asbury Park, the donuts are made by a mother and son team, and have already become a celebrated part of the community.
The shop opened in 2015 and began having success shortly thereafter. “We’ve slowly gotten the word out,” said Jacki Sharpe, Baker and Owner, “but we have a really good product.” Accolades for their donuts include being named the Top Independent Donut Shop in New Jersey and one of the 10 Best Donut Shops in America.
Sharpe retired from a career in education and decided to pursue her passion for baking. She enrolled at pastry school and worked in Wegmans bakery department for a year, learning the tricks of the trade. Then, she and her son Wesley began working on a donut mix that was light and fluffy on the inside and crispy on the outside, and Purple Glaze Donuts was born.
Purple Glaze also is deeply involved in the Asbury Park community. “In our business model, we wanted to be a neighborhood shop,” Sharpe said. The shop is patronized by donut lovers far and wide, but maintains a devoted local fan base as well.
For Sharpe, Asbury Park is “the perfect combination of a city and a small town. So many of us business owners, people in the city, we know each other,” she said. “But you have the cool aspects of being in the city too, you have art and culture, music.”
The shop’s best-selling item is the French Toast donut, topped with cinnamon and sugar, maple icing and sweet cream cheese. The offerings range from more traditional recipes to donuts with unusual fillings and toppings. The shop also has a range of vegan donuts, and caters weddings and other events.