The newly opened Donut Factory has diners by their mouth and heart
The UFO donut sits on the plate, in all its chocolatey glory, as if challenging us to take a bite. It looks more like a round, soft chocolate-covered cushion than a donut. The challenge is taken up or rather we succumb to temptation. As teeth sink into the soft donut there is a burst of chocolate – all gooey and soft. Even as the powdered Oreo cookie-covered donut sits waiting.
And these are just a couple of kinds of donuts at the recently opened Donut Factory on the main avenue at Panampilly Nagar. The ‘factory’ is the brainchild of engineer-buddies Nobel Thomas and Pratheek Prabhakran. Nobel says he wanted to do something in the food business and he found a willing partner in his classmate and friend Pratheek.
“The ‘factory’ in the name is the only thing engineering about this,” Pratheek says. They studied at Hindustan Engineering College in Chennai. Pratheek is a Malayali based in Chennai and Nobel belongs to Kochi.
After trials and ‘surveys’ they hit upon donuts. Parents, family and friends were plied with donuts to see how people reacted to them. “I don’t have a sweet tooth, but even I liked them. They appealed to almost everybody and here we are,” Pratheek says.
The plan, initially, wasn’t to start a donut place in Kochi, it would have been either Chennai or Bangalore. Then they hit upon the idea of opening shop in Kochi. “Everybody likes donuts,” they declare. For, according to them, it is a democratic, category-less food.
The crowd jostling for donuts – chocolate, strawberry, marble, with filling or sans filling – any donut from the Donut Factory, on a late Monday afternoon, are proof that their assessment was spot on. Nobel’s wife Bonny has to practically drag Nobel and Pratheek to sit down for a chat. The crowd is such that friends and family have joined in serving as the staff has been moved in to the kitchen. There is the option of take-away or eating there, you can choose your drink – coffee and the likes. There are seating options, happy-cheerful white benches, indoors and outside too.
For the time being they have 16 flavours ‘which were short-listed from 50 plus flavours.’ They work with a food consultant from Chennai. “The donuts are eggless and the sugar content is reduced,” Nobel says. The donuts are soft yet firm, it is almost impossible eggless-softness. These are probably two of the factors that make these donuts a must-try. Since there are no eggs the process takes longer, he adds. “Reduced sugar means people can easily down two or three at a go,” Pratheek jokes. They also plan to introduce savoury donuts.
You could take home sets of six and 12 in pretty boxes or in cheerful orange polka-dotted paper bags. The regular donuts are priced at Rs. 49 and those with fillings at Rs. 55. The store is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.