Nicholas Barahona, Contributing Writer
Welcome to Nick’s Picks.
Join me, Nick Barahona, on our journey through the city of Richmond where I review and showcase the different cuisines and restaurants in close proximity to campus, from the lens of a VCU student. To all new and returning Rams, I welcome you to an exciting time ahead filled with great deals and good eats.
This week we follow our sweet tooth to Mochinut Richmond, a fan favorite on campus that lies along West Franklin Street across from Panda Express. With many locations found outside the U.S., including South Korea and Thailand, let’s explore what Mochinut Richmond has to offer.
The naturally vibrant environment of Mochinut is instantly apparent. There are many large windows throughout the store, which allows for great lighting. Additionally, the beautiful plant wall is great for snapping Instagram pictures with any food or drink item. One thing that will immediately catch the eyes is the mochi donut flavor selections for the day displayed right out front inside the glass divider.
Something I really admire about Mochinut Richmond is the diversity in the donut flavors. It rotates flavors daily, so there is always a nice surprise when coming into the store. Flavors have included churro, fruity pebbles, funnel cake, red velvet, ube, oreo, horchata and mango, just to name a few. Depending on hunger, order a single, triple or six piece mochi donut box. If you’re sharing with friends, I suggest going a step further and ordering a 12 piece box.
Mochinut’s brand has won the hearts of their customers with their signature mochi donuts, Korean rice hot dogs and cheese dogs. Mochi donuts originate from Hawaii and combine American donuts and Japanese mochi together.
Made with rice flour, they have an easy crisp on the outside with a soft airy chew inside that leaves an enjoyable bite every time. Think of small little donut balls made of rice flour pieced together in a circle and boom, there’s a mochi donut.
Mochinut also offers drinks such as boba tea and fruit tea. The choices include a variety of boba tea flavors that include brown sugar, coffee, thai tea, ube, matcha and milk tea. As for the fruit tea, I recommend popular flavors such as strawberry, lychee, passion fruit, peach and mango.
There are two kinds of Korean rice hot dogs at Mochinut: with hot dogs inside or with mozzarella inside. There are also different sweet and savory toppings such as hot cheeto, crispy ramen, fried potato and sugar coat.
A Korean rice hot dog is essentially a larger version of the average corn dog. It has the same deliciousness, but is battered in rice flour instead of corn and is twice the size. Now replace that hot dog filling with mozzarella and you have a mix of a mozzarella stick and corn dog put together.
Something that Mochinut Richmond does exceptionally well is their packaging. Whether it’s donuts, Korean dogs, boba or fruit tea, they have fun and creative prints and packages to go along with the food or drink.
The only downside I see is the pricing. A three piece donut box is $8.25, a Korean rice hotdog with cheese filling is $5 and a tea drink with either boba or fruit is $5. This adds up to $18-$20 if interested in trying the various selections. Of course, if you are coming here for a single item, I would definitely say the value in taste and flavor gained is worth the price.
I am now a victim of the Mochinut craze that is shared by millions across the world. With its different options to choose from, I can enjoy something different and new about Mochinut every time I visit. This gets the thumbs up from me and a 4.5 out of 5 stars.
As always, eat up!
For all things food, feel free to check out @nxreview on Instagram and TikTok for many more recommendations and reviews around town.