A decadent donut shop from Medellin made its debut in the capital

The newest donut game in town decorates brioche balls with fine chocolate, gold leaf, colorful tropical fruits, Venezuelan rum and other Latin flavors.

Donissima, a two-location emerging donut shop in the Colombian capital of Medellin, makes its statewide debut this week from Ivy City’s ghost kitchen (1369 New York Avenue NE). Daily pick-up and delivery hours are 9am-5pm (or until sale). Washington-based Chef Miguel Guerra started Donissima during the pandemic with his father, who lives in Colombia and runs daily surgeries there.

Guerra relies on Latin American ingredients and advanced pastry techniques to make five cakes a day ($4-5). A family recipe that requires fermenting brioche dough for 24 hours, producing a light, airy center. Guava and cheese—a popular flavor combination in Colombia and Venezuela—help build one creamy, frozen treat.

A guava and cheese donut dotted with cubes of bright red Colombian fruit.

Colombia’s famous arquibe dessert (dulce de leche) inspires another elaborate donut, drenched in a dusting of fresco crumble.

“You won’t find those flavors at Krispy Kreme or anywhere else,” he says.

Guerra honed his craft in confectionery under the leadership of Miami confectionery king Antonio Pachore, who just received a James Beard Award nomination in the 2022 semi-finalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef. He also spent six years at the modern Colombian tasting room Elcielo in Miami and currently works with his Michelin-rated brother at the capital’s Latin food hall La Cosecha.

“I love sweets. I stop eating anything else to eat cake,” he tells Eater.

Growing up in Venezuela, Dunkin’ Donuts was a delicacy of sorts, and Guerra remembers begging his mom for a sugary souvenir every time she travels to the States for work.

“She was carrying about twenty boxes of cream donuts from Boston in her bag to Venezuela,” he says. “He’s one of my biggest inspirations.”

Now the chef is applying his fine dining background, which included a stint at Wynwood’s Alter, to recreate his childhood favorites to be “as beautiful and delicious as possible.”

Chocolate donut with gold flakes

This all-in-one chocolate cake is finished with cocoa, hazelnuts, and flakes of 24-karat gold leaf.
Donisima / official photo

Venezuelan rum, orange confit, and raw brown sugar help build a sparkling donut with old-fashioned notes. “You can taste the rum,” he says.

Brown donut surrounded by orange slices

Rum Fashion features rum pastry cream, orange confit and 55 percent chocolate.
Donisima / official photo

The vanilla glazed donut is the simplest of the bunch, appearing again in an arrangement of six mini donuts. Donisima will expand with decorated cakes, crullers, and cherry blossom flavors for spring.

Plans to display Donissima cakes at a futuristic brick-and-mortar Latin café in D.C. Currently, orders can be placed for pick-up or delivery through UberEats, Tock and Doordash.

“I don’t compete with anyone,” he says. “I want to make a classic product and make it different.”

Guerra also serves elegant vegetarian tasting menus at Mita, a pandemic Latin pop-up that plans to return to La Cosecha on a monthly basis.

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