They will have trained for a month come June 15, and perfected their technique and at the end of the day, a local Facebook fan of Nicola’s Donuts will (hopefully) be a Guinness World Record holder, provided they can eat more than six powdered donuts in three minutes!
Rachel Waatti and Michelle Kaw, owners of Nicola’s Donuts since 2011, applied to the Guinness Book of World Records and have been granted permission to officially attempt to break the record, currently set by Shamus Petherick (Australia) at Donuts Coffee N More in Deception Bay, Queensland, Australia, on December 12, 2010.
From now until June 14, the owners are asking Facebook fans to sign up to attempt to set the record, hoping to fill 10 seats with eager (and hungry) customers. Those looking to sign up are invited to “like” their page and send them a message expressing their interest: https://www.facebook.com/NicolasDonuts
“We know our fans love their donuts, so who better to break this record than them?” said Waatti. “We are confident that one of our loyal customers can beat this record and we are excited to play a part.”
Now through June 14, Nicola’s will also be offering “training” session at their newest location in The Yogurt Spot at 15006 North Dale Mabry Highway (the store moved in early March from its previous location at 14390 North Dale Mabry Highway). Those looking to train will be given 90 seconds to eat three powdered donuts. Those completing the task will not be charged for the goodies.
Evidence will be collected in accordance with the Records Guidelines provided by Guinness and will subsequently be verified and approved by a Guinness World Records Adjudicator – the official Guinness World Records judge – who undertakes the assessment process to determine whether a world record has been achieved.
When it comes to assuming ownership of a well-recognized business with a pre-existing customer base, the brave join a franchise and are fortunate to have a blue-print as they navigate their way through business ownership. The braver assume control of a non-franchised small business and face one of the toughest battles of them all: maintaining the legacy of the brand and its products while launching their own strategy and operations. This is the balancing act Nicola’s Donut’s Owners (and sisters) Rachel Waatti and Michele Kaw are mastering.
The two assumed ownership of the 30-year old Tampa staple in 2011. Joe and Kathy Nicola had operated its original location on Busch Boulevard and were well-known for their donuts, baked fresh daily using no preservatives and no trans fats. A second owner maintained the brand until 2011.
Originally from the Philippines, Kaw and Waatti knew they wanted to establish a business in Florida. When they saw that Nicola’s Donuts was for sale they decided to assume ownership of the available Nicola’s Donuts rather than to start a new company.
“We knew that establishing a fan base was half the battle and Nicola’s already had a great reputation,” said Kaw. “We also knew we wanted our bakery to offer a particular kind of cupcake, inspired by the gourmet cupcakes available in other major US cities, as well as other pastries but feared what might happen if we were to stray too far from the Nicola’s Tampa knew and loved.”
The results? Kaw and Waatti have upheld the original donut recipes and baking methods, but also now offer a larger variety of donuts (including new weekly specials) and have added 30 cupcakes as well as other pastries to the menu. They continue to deliver products to be sold at local gas stations and hospitals throughout Tampa Bay, a service the second owner initiated.
“It was important for us to maintain Nicola’s reputation for great donuts, but also to follow through with our own plans,” added Waatti.
As it goes with all small businesses, it has not all been smooth sailing. The response to a recent move from a second location at 14390 North Dale Mabry Highway to a new location inside the Yogurt Spot at 15006 North Dale Mabry Highway has been varied.
“Like all changes, the move has elicited both positive and negative feedback from our customers,” said Kaw. “A few customers had trouble finding us and the lower in-store temperatures were affecting the quality our products. But we are learning and adapting as best we can and are grateful that the majority of our customers are sticking with us as the Nicola’s brand evolves.”
With wedding season now in full swing, local bakeries are sure to be busy creating custom wedding cakes for brides (and grooms) of all tastes. While many specialize in creating the typical three-tiered confections in specific wedding colors, one local bakery is known for its atypical “cakes,” which are growing in popularity.
Nicola’s Donuts (which recently celebrated its newly opened location in The Yogurt Spot at 15006 North Dale Mabry Highway) specializes in creating donuts and cupcakes for all occasions. But, in recent years, fans of the well-known local bakery’s highly-sought-after treats have approached owners Rachel Waatti and Michele Kaw, who assumed ownership of the bakeries in 2011, to create “donut cakes” for their Big Day.
“For the past few years, cupcakes have been growing in popularity among brides and grooms looking to offer guests more options or just do something different at their wedding,” said Kaw. “What surprised us was the growing number of inquiries about our donuts for weddings. They often come from our loyal customers who have fallen in love with a traditional flavor or weekly special or have something new in mind.”
Now in its 30th year of business, Nicola’s has already filled two orders for wedding donut cakes this season. Orders range from an assortment of sweet options to one with donuts created with a specific motif in mind (blue and purple).
“As long as we receive the order at least a few weeks in advance, we are able to complete wedding orders of just about any size,” added Kaw. “We are also able to customize colors and décor, as well as create a new flavor to meet our customer’s requests.”
One of Nicola’s stores moved in early March from its previous location at 14390 North Dale Mabry Highway. The new partnership with Yogurt Spot will allow the popular yogurt shop to serve all of Nicola’s menu items at the Dale Mabry location. New hours will be 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Sunday – Thursday) and 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. (Friday – Saturday).
Nicola’s Busch location at 902 West Busch Boulevard will not interrupt service or change hours.
Tell us about the things that only your mom does for you? Did she or does she make a special sandwich just the way you like it? Does she have..
Trivia Thursday: What can you get Mom for Mother's Day that is sweet and personalized with her initials? :)