Knead Doughnuts, 32 Custom House Street

Coffee Shop July 12, 2018
Knead Doughnuts, 32 Custom House St


Knead Doughnuts, 32 Custom House Street

It’s time for another coffee adventure. The first two coffee shops I’ve explored for The Coffee 401 I’ve been to before, so today we’re going to try a place I’ve never been to, Knead Doughnuts. It’s one of several fancy “gourmet” doughnut shops to have popped up in Providence over the last few years. As the name implies, this is more of a doughnut shop than a coffee shop, but they’re on the Food Fights list, so off we go!

One of the cool things about this Knead Doughnuts, (there are currently two locations), is how understated it is as I walk over to it. The sign just reads “Doughnuts Inside” with the smallest sign on the window with their name. I feel like I’m discovering a secret location for coffee. Also doughnuts.

Hmm…I have too many photos for this round, so this is going to be a photo journey. More on the other side!

Interior entrance
As I walk in I feel like I’m being guided by an artsy minimalist.
The doughnuts look REALLY good. Must focus on the mission: coffee!
The interior design in here is blowing my expectations out of the water.
OK here we go. Time to get some iced coffee.
Crap. Free samples. I’m doing a morning fast as part of my intermittent fasting plan. This is becoming very difficult.
Got Coffee
For me this is just a coffee shop right now. Coffee is delivered by friendly staff. I’m doing great.
coffee & cream & simple syrup
They have everything I need to make it perfect: cream & simple syrup. This coffee is very good.
High ceilings
There is seating in the front by the large windows as well. I love the high ceilings!
One of the bakers in the back noticed I was taking photos and asked if I wanted to take a photo of a doughnut. Ok sure. The next thing I know he is offering me a really delicious brown butter pecan doughnut.
coffee & doughnut
Hmm. This isn’t going according to plan. It’s ok. I can save the doughnut for later.
Very classy
The atmosphere in here is very classy.
Oh no!
I almost made it. Yep. They also have really tasty doughnuts.

So that about sums up this adventure. One extra bit of insider knowledge: The mural above the counter was done by an up and coming local artist named Rebecca Volynsky. Her art has been popping up all over the city, which is pretty cool, and now you’re cool too because you’re in the know. You can check her out at If you reach out, tell her The Coffee 401 sent you.

Art by R Volynski
Rebecca’s art. She may also be in this photo…

The last thing to note is the parking. It is not ideal. We’re talking paid street parking or a paid parking lot. However, The Coffee 401 has you covered. If you go a few blocks down Dyer Street heading out of the city, there is free parking on both sides. So save yourself a few bucks and plan on that, because let’s face it, after eating that doughnut you weren’t going to get, a little walking will do you good.

The Coffee 401 Verdict
  • 9/10
    Iced Coffee - 9/10
  • 9.5/10
    Atmosphere - 9.5/10
  • 9/10
    Place to meet a friend - 9/10
  • 8.5/10
    Place for a coffee date - 8.5/10
  • 9/10
    Place for a work session - 9/10


  • The coffee is very good and has that strong taste I love. Also it has my two favorite additional ingredients cream and simple syrup.
  • The atmosphere is surprisingly awesome. This place is classy as a coffee shop and a doughnut shop.
  • This would be a great place to meet a friend or two as long as you can all find parking. If you live in the city this would be a really cool place to walk to for a meet up.
  • This seems like a very good spot for a first meeting or coffee date. The only downside (I say “downside” as someone who strives to be healthy) is the doughnuts. If you’re planning on being “healthy”, your best bet is to split a doughnut with your date, since you’ll be hard-pressed to ignore the fact that there are amazing doughnuts all around you.
  • There are outlets and wifi. There is even a large table if you need to spread out. The only downside is it is pretty small, so if it gets busy I’d imagine it would be hard to find a spot. Especially with a plug.

Besides having really great atmosphere and really great doughnuts, Knead actually turns out to be an excellent coffee shop too! If you don’t mind the temptation of the doughnuts, you’ll have a great time here. If you’re commuting to the city by car, getting here is a bit rough since there is only street parking or paid parking lots around it, but to say it’s worth taking the trip is an understatement.

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