If you're a Miami native, chances are you remember Velvet Creme Doughnuts. The locally made baked goods were a Miami institution for years. It all began in 1947, when Jim Hadler opened a shop on SW Eighth Street. Soon he expanded to a second location, near the University of Miami, but then family illness caused the two locations to close after nearly a half-century of operation.
Good news, doughnut lovers: The iconic Velvet Creme is making a comeback.
The Velvet Creme Doughnut food truck will make its debut at the sixth-annual Burger Beast Burgie Awards this Saturday, January 31, from 5 to 10 p.m. at Milander Park (4700 Palm Ave., Hialeah). The event is free and open to the public.
The truck is owned and operated by Krista Rios, her father Jorge, and Robert Taylor. Krista, who is an attorney, was looking to start a business when she and her father began reminiscing about Velvet Creme. Then she got in touch with Taylor, an ex-police detective whose sister had married into the Velvet Creme family. Taylor's brother-in-law, Gary, had closed down the business for family health reasons. But he always thought he would resurrect the company when the time was right. "I met Robert and we hit it off right away. He was looking to bring back Velvet Creme as he had promised his brother-in-law."
Then and there, Krista knew that she and her dad had to partner with Taylor and revive the Velvet Creme brand. "My being an attorney and Robert being an ex-cop, I thought it was a perfect match. After all, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right?"
Krista says she remembers going to the UM location for doughnuts every Sunday, and her dad really loves the Miami-born pastries. "Baby boomers remember it and get really nostalgic about it."
The partners are looking for a brick-and-mortar shop, preferably in the South Miami/Coral Gables area. Until then, their food truck will park near the UM campus and will also be available for private events.
For now, the truck will offer about a half-dozen varieties, including powdered, creme-filled, cake, round Johns (a creme-filled, chocolate-frosted doughnut), and freshly glazed. Doughnuts will cost about a dollar each. In the future, tropical flavors like guava and key lime will be introduced.
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In addition, the truck will serve American and Cuban coffee, hot chocolate, latte, milk, juice, and soft drinks.
And, as for the taste, Krista assures that the new Velvet Creme doughnuts will be as good as the originals. What makes these doughnuts so special, anyway? Krista Rios explains, "There's something about our recipe, combined with a family feel and a retro vibe that people really respond to. Velvet Creme is unique to Miami."