After years of rumors, the Massachusetts-based doughnut and coffee chain Dunkin’ Donuts might finally arrive in Los Angeles!
It’s been theorized that there was some kind of unspoken or unknown agreement between the predominantly east coast Dunkin’ Donuts and North Carolina’s Krispy Kreme chain that they wouldn’t step on each others’ toes. The sugar-dense Krispy Kreme has held California and other west coast areas for years. But it appears Dunkin’ Donuts may instead consider Starbucks their true competitor due to the majority of DD sales coming from coffee instead of donuts, and they are planning on ramping up their store count. And that the real reason they’ve avoided California is because it’s widely considered a largely impenetrable stronghold of independent coffee shops (which doesn’t really explain the obscene proliferation of Starbucks or the reasonably health of Coffee Bean, an LA-based chain). Whatever the case, it appears the lay of the land is about to change.
As a Massachusetts transplant now living in Los Angeles, I have considerable nostalgia for Dunkin’ Donuts. I remember my father coming home after getting the Sunday morning paper with a “surprise” box of donuts for all of us. Sunday comics and a donut or five are a great way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon. My east coast friends on Facebook tell me Dunkin’ Donuts ain’t what it used to be. Truth be told, it was seldom amazing. But it was the right kind of good. Mix with a dash of homesick memories, and you’ve got success waiting to happen. And Los Angeles is full of transplants.
So where is Dunkin’ Donuts opening in California first? Los Angeles? San Francisco? How about… Camp Pendleton. Yes, that’s right. According to the Boston Business Journal, the Marine Corps base located in the northwestern corner of San Diego County is where it’ll all start. Or it could just be the first one we know about, because according to this interview, they are definitely eying California in their plan to double their store count and become a global fast food chain now that they’ve gone public.
Of course, usually that kind of expansion leads to a drop in quality. Nostalgia can only distort reality so much.