Here at SNIZL, we’re really proud to support some of the best local and independent businesses in the city centre and surrounding areas. We caught up with Wade Smith, co-founder of the Nottingham Doughnut co. along with fiancé Megan Scaddan, about the borrowed £10 that began the start of their doughnut enterprise and what’s next for the future of their business!
Why are your doughnuts the best in Nottingham?
The texture! Our doughnuts are deliciously moist – the recipe that we created means our doughnuts stay soft and fresher for longer which is really rare for a doughnut. We recently flew to New York and visited some doughnut stores which had been around since the 1900’s and noticed that their product was slightly dry in comparison. We’re huge doughnut enthusiasts, so we’re really passionate about the work that we do and we work really hard to make sure ours always stay as fresh and moist as when they’re first baked. We also really listen to our customers and take their feedback on board – we’re constantly thinking up new flavours and creations. We were recently asked to create a butterscotch flavour which went down a storm, and I think keeping things new and interesting is one of the reasons why we’re one of the best in the city. Because we only sell doughnuts, it’s really important that we keep evolving. We sell fresh coffee but we aren’t a coffee shop, we sell doughnuts and that’s what we love. I think that’s why we’ve taken off – we sell one product but we sell it well!
How did you get the idea to start selling doughnuts?
I began an apprenticeship in Marketing and Megan was working full time in retail but neither of us felt particularly valued or fulfilled. One day I borrowed £10 from my grandparents, bought some ingredients and that was that! After that, we whipped up a batch of 12 doughnuts and sold them to a friend for £10, and we realised how much we enjoyed it and wanted to pursue it further. We actually began making and selling doughnuts originally to get a bit of spare cash to go on holiday and when we saved enough to go we realised it was something we could definitely do. We began doing food fairs and markets on a weekend and from there we just grew, and before we knew it we had both quit our jobs and began employing other staff to grow our team!
What made you want to set up a business in Nottingham?
We’re both originally from Nottingham, and it was never really in our plan to set up our own business – neither of us were ever specifically interested in that area. But ever since the beginning, we’ve put everything we have into making our business the best it can be, and from here we are really keen to develop further. We hope to soon begin branching out with even more weekend food markets around the East Midlands, and then eventually create a franchise at some point in the future. I think a lot of people can be really put off by the idea of setting up a small business and it’s definitely a daunting prospect, but luckily we had loads of great opportunities come our way and we took them. We listened carefully to a lot of great advice and took a huge leap which we’re so grateful paid off!
Is Nottingham a good city for small businesses?
Definitely – it’s a great environment for independent businesses to thrive. The Hockley area is really popular for small businesses in comparison to our side of town which is largely dominated by corporations, which means we’re slightly in the middle. However, we think this has been hugely beneficial to us because we’ve noticed that more and more people are now looking to local businesses for fresh food that’s a little bit different on this side of town. We can also provide a whole other level of customer service; we’re real people that genuinely love what we do. We really care about our customers and our produce and I think people are passionate about buying into that.
What’s been your most popular doughnut?
Salted caramel definitely. We sell around 800 of these a week which is amazing – people seem to love it! We also found that the smaller versions of our doughnuts were doing really well for parents with young kids, so we brought out a mini range for £1 which have been flying off the shelves!
What’s your most unique doughnut?
We did a Chocolate Rum Raisin doughnut and we also did a Baileys doughnut with chocolate cream which was well received (for obvious reasons!) Our Mars bar doughnut is one of our best sellers, and the Pop-Tart one is definitely one of the most unique flavours out there!
Do you have any Easter specials lined up?
This year we’re doing a Crème Egg doughnut – we’ve sold about 600 of these in the past three days so it’s safe to say these are popular. These will be limited edition and once they’re gone they’re gone! We also have a flavour called the Nottingham Mars which we’ve just brought back by popular demand ready for Easter.
How quickly do you sell-out?
We open at 9am and close as soon as all the doughnuts sell out – this is usually at about 2/3pm most days. We’ve actually had to double the amount we bake just to keep up with the demand – the weekends are our busiest time and the counter is usually bare by the early afternoon so it’s best to head down early!
What’s next for The Nottingham Doughnut Co.?
We can’t wait to just keep growing! We are currently working on a vegan doughnut within the next couple of weeks, so this is in the pipe line for the very near future. We’ve sourced specific ingredients all the way from the U.S and we’re currently working on perfecting it so it’s ready to roll out to a whole new market of Vegan customers! We’ve also got our own spin on a ‘Croughnut’ coming out within the next few months which we are really excited about, and next will be a gluten free doughnut which is definitely in high demand at the moment. Make sure you keep an eye out for some brand new flavours coming soon including a pistachio glaze, peanut butter and jelly and my personal favourite, our cheesecake flavoured doughnut!
To sample some of the best sweet treats that Nottingham has to offer, head over to their store on Long Row over on the Market Square from 9am Tuesday to Sunday before they sell out. Make sure you get your hands on the limited edition Creme Egg doughnuts in time for Easter and don’t forget you can get 2 for £5 over the Bank Holiday weekend!