Many folks who vacation on the Outer Banks look forward all year long to a breakfast of freshly made Duck Donuts. As of next March, they will have to wait no more. That’s when Duck Donuts plans to open in Charlottesville at the Shops at Stonefield. Rebecca Johnson, who owns the new Duck Donuts with her husband David, provides the scoop below. You can follow their progress on Facebook.
1) What is the background of Duck Donuts, and what made you interested in running a donut shop?
Rebecca: Duck Donuts originates in Duck, NC. The company was started by two gentlemen that regularly vacationed there and noticed the area was missing a good donut shop. They opened the first store and business took off so they opened two more in the Outer Banks. We found Duck Donuts when we visited the Duck location and enjoyed our first donut. We approached the owners that day about franchising and a few weeks later they called and welcomed us to be the first franchisees . . .
My husband and I are actually mortgage people. He works for a wholesale lender and I am a mortgage broker. We began looking for a franchise to buy into about two years ago and when we found Duck Donuts we knew that we had found IT. We both have backgrounds in management & food (David once owned a Greek restaurant) so the donut shop was a natural fit for us. Plus, who doesn’t love a warm donut? The overall nature of the business is pretty simple and most importantly, people LOVE our donuts.
2) What makes Duck Donuts unique?
Duck Donuts are unique for a couple of reasons, but primarily it is the production process. When you come into our store and order a maple bacon donut, we make it from scratch and serve it to you warm, every time. The whole process is visible to our customers which most of them find interesting to watch. We also make our icings in the store – the lemon and orange icing are made from real lemons and oranges. All of our donuts are vanilla cake style donuts with the exception of a pumpkin donut that we are offering through the holidays.
In addition to warm donuts, we offer breakfast sandwiches (bacon/egg/cheese or sausage/egg/cheese) served on a bagel or English muffin along with fresh made muffins and excellent coffee & espresso. For an additional treat, we offer donut sundaes.
3) What are your personal favorite donuts at Duck Donuts?
Hmm. I LOVE the French Toast donut (maple icing with cinnamon sugar and powdered sugar sprinkled on top). I also LOVE the lemon iced donut with some coconut sprinkled on top. The cinnamon sugar with some icing drizzled across it is FABULOUS and the powdered sugar donut is just a classic. Maple Bacon is our best seller to the public though.
4) How did you choose Charlottesville as a location?
Rebecca: When David graduated college (UNC) he actually moved to Ruckersville with his first job. Over the past few years we have vacationed here a lot. I am a horse lover and this is horse country so it feels like a natural fit for our family. We love the mountains and the people have been so friendly. Charlottesville is also a foodie town and we love good food so it just feels like home.
5) Do you have a planned opening date?
We are looking to open in March 2015.