Podcast Ep. #10: Johnny 5 Donuts

Johnny 5 DonutsIf you’ve spent any time on Chengdu Living or Chengdu Places, you’ve probably run into some mention of Johnny 5 Donuts. Johnny opened his donut parlor just 3 months ago but through a combination of magnetic personality, savvy web presence, and delicious pastries, he has quickly become a Chengdu mainstay.

In this episode, we talk to Johnny about his business, the life he left in America, transitioning to life in Chengdu, and his aspirations in China that go way beyond just baking donuts.

Special Note!

There is a contest organized by Johnny 5 and three other Chengdu restaurants that is concluding on April 11. On that night, there will be a party during which the winners will be announced. For more information about the contest and the party, follow this link.

Related Links and Pictures


  • Johnny happy making donuts:


Songs and media features in this podcast:

Remixx, by Lindsay Lowend
Me de Amor, by Sango
Let’s Bake a Cake, by Lazy Town & Lil John
Pegasus, by Gems
Big City Nights, by マクロスMACROSS 82-99

Download & Stream Links

Here are links to download or open the podcast in iTunes:

Download the Podcast Open in iTunes

Or click below to listen to the podcast now through your browser.

You can also search for the podcast in your favorite podcasting app (mine is Overcast, which we highly recommend for iPhone users).

If you enjoy the podcast, please share it! We look forward to recording more of these and continuing to chronicle and share the story of life in Chengdu.

Got an idea of what we should record our next podcast about? Let us know in the comments and if you like what you heard, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and stay tuned for the next one!

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Since each episode features different participants, the Podcast Robot dutifully uploads our podcast. All podcasts are 128kbps mp3's and you can download or stream them all. You can download our podcasts on iTunes, too.

12 Responses to “Podcast Ep. #10: Johnny 5 Donuts”

  1. Gaming the system hard!
    J-Wu’s the man. Awesome podcast guys. Looking forward to drinks and donuts @ Sprankles!

    • Dan

      So you’re THE Daniel Coleman! Good luck staying trim as you figure out how to manage all that [insert Western food here]!

  2. Eli

    Johnny was a great guest. Whenever the time comes for a spin-off cooking podcast, he will be a great host for it.

    • Charlie

      Yeah, he has a magnetic personality which adds a lot to his donut shop. It reminds me of Cheers (the bar and TV show) more than any place I’ve seen in Chengdu. He’s fist bumping customers all day.

  3. Maz

    This podcast really cheered me up 😀

    Thanks guys. Great interview with an awesome guest.

    I have also hung around there for hours while doing some writing and chatting to John and whoever else joined in later. It’s a great place to meet people if you stay long enough! Unlike other western bars and eateries I’ve been to, you can just strike up a convo with people. The tight space helps 😀

    It is very good to know the background story of foreign business owners in audio. It humanises them even more. Next you could interview Nick and Jessi from Redbeard, but after that, take a break from interviewing Americans :D:D Perhaps you could also have a chat with some of the teacher’s experiences and frustrations while teaching in Chengdu. The more varied the types of guests are, the more audience it will attract and the greater the podcast will become 🙂

  4. Eli

    Maz, thanks for your suggestion! I think doing one on teaching is a great idea. That is something that we may have overlooked because it is right in front of our face. But that is a huge part of life in China for foreigners, and something that everyone has strong opinions about.

  5. Eli

    Who won the drawing? Did THE Daniel Coleman capture the prize?


  1. Hao Hao Report - April 9, 2015

    Someone thinks this story is hao-tastic

    This story was submitted to Hao Hao Report – a collection of China’s best stories and blog posts. If you like this story, be sure to go vote for it.

  2. Bicycles in 2018 - March 15, 2018

    […] customized Novara Strada 5, has been my main bike for the last two years. I bought it off a friend (Johnny 5) who gave me a great deal. Novara is a fairly obscure brand (it is Rei’s in-house brand) but […]

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