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WCCO Viewers' Choice For Best Donuts In Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- There is an old adage that says, "The best donut is the one you're eating right now."

While that is certainly true, there can only be one Best of Minnesota -- and the winner's reputation precedes itself.

Hanisch Bakery and Coffee Shop in Red Wing was voted best bakery by viewers, so it is only fitting that they would also make your favorite donut.

Bill Hanisch Of Hanisch Bakery
Bill Hanisch (credit: CBS)

"Yeah, I mean, well, we should have the best donuts," owner Bill Hanisch said. "The bakery's been around for a long, long time. You know, it's been this location since 1954."

In that time, it has always had a family last name.

"Pirius', Braschler's and now Hanisch's," he said. "And actually before that was the Quandt's, so it's just been a family-run bakery in downtown Red Wing."

Hanisch, known to his fans at the "Bunman," entered into the mix about 20 years ago.

"I got fired from a golf course job when I was 15 or 16, and applied here to work in packaging, and started here mopping floors," Hanisch said. "Worked my way up!"

Hanisch Bakery Donuts - Best In Minnesota
(credit: CBS)

Do not be mistaken, though. The Bunman was well-trained at Johnson & Wales University's College of Culinary Arts. After school, he came back to his hometown -- eventually buying the bakery in 2007.

"Why do people love donuts? Homer Simpson, I guess!" Hanisch said. "It's a comfort food, you know, it really is. Whether you're happy, sad, mad or whatever … that's why bakeries are great."

They do not cut corners at Hanisch's, making just about everything from scratch. It is a simple recipe for success.

"The highest-quality ingredients, because then you're going to get the highest-quality product," Hanisch said. "I think I added up this morning, it was 57 different kinds of donuts we make on a daily basis. And that's just the donuts."

Yes, Hanisch Bakery and Coffee Shop sells lots of baked goods besides donuts. And they have a cafe serving up soups, salads and sandwiches.

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