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Donuts, technically, are a dime a dozen, since you are guaranteed to see donut kiosks in almost every community. But the real good ones–the ones so delicious it will spark that insatiable craving for more sugary goodness–are a rarity.
Founders Donuts may just be in this category.
Founders Donuts is a new extension of the F&B brand that is Founders Café Inc. (FCI), a local shop that serves specialty beverages and food, but is also a world-class training ground for any entrepreneur who aspires to break into the food and beverage industry. While this artisanal donut brand’s humble beginnings can be traced to a couple of individuals’ highly passionate craft, its operations have become reflective of that exact mastery that FCI teaches their students–learning to whip and create things up in the kitchen, to perfection.
For RP Argonza and Chris Estacion, entrepreneurs and owners of Founders Café Inc., their venture into these staple sweet snacks started with, well–dough. A good dough. “I’ve been making donuts since 2012. Back then, it was more of a ‘hobby’,” RP recalls. “I was experimenting with how to create the perfect dough for this dessert, so I was creating a lot of it. I remember my wife would even bring them and sell them where she used to work, and she would always sell them out. Fast-forward to December of 2021, Chris and I were having a conversation about what products to release next and he told me since I always bragged about how good my donuts were, I should make it for the café.”
Chris’s statement turned out to be significant: At the start of 2022, they were able to branch out the brand and turn Founders Donuts into a reality. For a newbie donut line, Founders Donuts seem to be hitting all the right elements of what a delightful, sweet dough-based treat should be: It has the flavor (check!). It has a curious texture that’s neither over or underwhelming (check!). It is served fresh (triple check!). Paired with their craft coffees, their donuts can satiate any sweet craving, any time.
Great donuts, deconstructed
RP’s pride about their newest offering shows in the way he talks about how they create them: He does not shy away from revealing the process for making their delectable donuts.
“We start by making the base dough, which is a a super-rich brioche dough that is fluffy and soft but still has the right amount of bite,” RP explains. Next, he makes the flavors. An unwritten rule currently being employed by the team is not to create anything complicated until one knows how to nail the classic glaze. “Our classic glazed donut is not too sweet and pairs really well with a brewed beverage,” RP explains. “In making our donut flavors, we embraced the ‘less is more’ principle. We believe that in each flavor we make, it should resemble the actual taste of the food we are trying to recreate into a donut.”
As positive word-of-mouth about their soft, flavorful donuts started to broaden, the donuts slowly took over the entire café to the point that they became the most popular item on their menu. That’s when the Chris and RP thought it best to just simplify everything and turn their café establishment into Founders Donuts.
As of this writing, Founders Donuts offers 12 kinds of donuts — Classic Glazed, Chocolate Frosted, Strawberry Candy, White Chocolate Frosted, Espresso Glazed, Oreo Dream, Biscoffee, Nutty Nutella, Milo Madness, Cereal Donut, and Matcha Green Tea–all of which are good as attested by patrons and even new customers who happen to discover them thanks to the positive feedback from other people.
Factoring in both sales and feedback, three of Founders Donuts’ twelve variants have become crowd favorites already:
Classic Glazed Donut
It’s unspoken but there seems to be some sort of ‘benchmark’ for the classic glazed donut (from a famous company which we shall not name), but speaking to patrons, this donut variant, which seemingly flies off their shelves soon as they dispatch them, can hold on its own. It’s simple, fluffy, and most importantly, not too sweet, which is a nod to the Filipino palate. It goes perfectly well with a good cup of coffee (which they also have).
For the Cookies And Cream lover in anyone. Chris passionately describes this donut as ‘just like biting into a big Oreo’, and that’s exactly how customers have described how it tastes and feels.
It’s colorful, it’s yummy, it’s fun. If you want to perk up your ho-hum afternoon, you can opt for this variant which uses the iconic Fruity Pebbles breakfast cereal as garnish, and white chocolate ganache as “milk.”
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