Velvet Creme says that was then, but this is now — where the future of doughnuts is frozen.
"We're an iconic doughnut shop," says Robert Taylor, one of the founding partners. "And now we're doing an iconic thing."
Beginning February 25, doughnut aficionados will be able to get their fix at any Miami-Dade County BJ's Wholesale Club location. Velvet Creme doughnuts will be available on shelves for two weeks, with the possibility of renewal.
"This is a true trial run for us," Taylor says. "They've never carried a frozen doughnut line. So if this works out, we want to go all the way up the East Coast."
Though the brand plans to reopen a store this summer in Miami Shores, Taylor says he wanted to get doughnuts into people's hands now, making the frozen-doughnut option a "no-brainer."
"It's going to be successful because now you don't have to eat them all at once," he says. "Big-box stores sell 12 to 18 doughnuts in a pack, but most people don't want or need all of them, which means they get wasted."
Taylor says transforming Velvet Creme's doughnuts into a frozen product is fairly simple. After the doughnuts are fried, the excess oil is drained. They're glazed and then flash-frozen, ready for distribution.
"They don't sit around for a while before they're frozen," he says. "We're not freezing doughnuts you see in the shop's window. They're flash-frozen right away and stay really fresh once they're defrosted."
When you purchase a dozen frozen doughnuts, you can defrost them all or one by one. Simply leave them on a countertop, and two to three hours later, they'll be room temperature and ready to eat. If you want one hot, stick it in the microwave for a few seconds.
"Doughnuts are hard to distribute," he says. "They're perishable items. But now that they're frozen, they have a much longer life. And there's no taste difference at all. You really wouldn't know the difference."
According to Taylor, Velvet Creme's frozen doughnuts have a six-month lifespan. For now, only traditional glazed doughnuts will be available for purchase; fancier flavors and toppings will follow if the glazed are a success.
Taylor doesn't disclose a specific price but says it will be competitive in terms of other store-bought doughnuts.
"The perfect comparison is White Castle burgers," he says. "They're up North, but we have their burgers down here because of their frozen line. We want to get our doughnuts into stores prior to opening locations in an area."
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