Crave doughnuts is the new craze

Nicole Morais and Jeremy Black outside their new doughnut shop in Whitby. Photo credit: Crave Doughnuts

The Instagram video shows a long lineup of people waiting for a store to open.

It looks like it could be hungry shoppers waiting to snap up TVs for a discount price at a Black Friday sale.

But in this case, it’s people in Whitby waiting to savour the taste of freshly-baked offerings from the newly-opened Crave Doughnuts.

Partners Nicole Morais, 25, and Jeremy Black, 27, are the brains and bakers behind the business, which started two years ago with the couple selling their doughnuts through other bakeries in Durham.

“We share a major passion in cooking, baking and eating doughnuts. We really had the entrepreneur bug to come home and start our own business,” says Morais.

The couple started making doughnuts for family, friends, small weddings and other functions, but they heard so much positive feedback, they decided to try to make it into a living.

“I came up with the idea, but Jeremy was definitely ready and full force with me in doing it. It was really nice to have him as a partner for sure,” Morais says.

For the past two years, the pair has been selling doughnuts out of different local bakeries, such as Deadly Grounds Café in Oshawa and Baking At Its Best bakery in Ajax. With their doughnuts priced at $20 for a half-dozen, they experienced lineups out the door, selling out their creations within 10 minutes.

Doughnuts purchased from the new Crave store in Whitby. Photo credit: Tara Sottile

“We wanted to have control over our own business and we wanted to have a certain vibe and certain atmosphere,” Morais says, of the decision to open up their own store on Lupin Drive.

“We wanted somewhere where people can come all the time, five days a week. This was our goal in the beginning so we’re happy we’re finally here.”

Once the couple realized there wasn’t a gourmet doughnut shop in Durham, that’s when they decided to show the region’s residents what they were missing.

“We decided to bring something to Durham that we never really had here before,” she says.

Coming up with a name for their new business was difficult, Morais says.

“It was actually a really tough battle. We had a lot of names that we were trying to go through and trying to pick, and it just sort of came to us. We knew right when we said it, that it was it,” she says.

As social media has grown over the years companies have been using it to promote businesses and their products. When first starting Crave, Morais and Black took to Instagram and Facebook to do just that. They say social media has played a huge role in their success as a business.

“If you’re creative with it (social media) and really work hard, spend a lot of time focusing on it, it really pays off. We really got a lot of our customers and creative relationships through social media,” she says.

Morais and Black say they use fresh and local ingredients as much as possible, and it’s one of the large values they have as a company.

After opening their shop on Nov. 22, the couple has been selling out every day within a few short hours. Their customers often wait outside in line for 30 minutes, just to get their hands on the doughnuts.

“I can’t believe it’s grown so fast in two years. We’re really proud of ourselves and thankful for all our supporters. And it feels good to be doing something different in Durham,” Morais says.