A fast-growing local donut brand has hit its first big speed bump.
The downtown Sugar Shack location at 1110 E. Main St. is closed, owner Ian Kelley confirmed yesterday. Its last day of business was Tuesday.
A sign in the door of the downtown store on Wednesday read: “We will be re-imagining the idea and will be relocating late spring with a new vision and brand. Thanks for a great past year downtowners.”
In an email, Kelley said the company is committed to downtown. But he also said that the Main Street location “is being reevaluated so we can best serve the loyal Sugar Shack customers.”
The shuttering of the downtown location, first reported by Richmond.com, is a rare pause in what has been a period of rapid growth for Sugar Shack. Kelley opened the first Sugar Shack in Carver in March 2013. The downtown location followed in February 2014, and West End and Northern Virginia locations opened this month.
Kelley’s expansion also spread across the river to Manchester last June when he bought a dilapidated diner property at 1228 Hull St. Kelley said he is working on a new concept for the Manchester location that may be tied to the rebranding of the downtown store.
He said more locations are in the works for Midlothian, Fredericksburg, Charlottesville and Florida
The original Lombardy Street Sugar Shack reopened last week after undergoing renovations.
“The heart of Sugar Shack Donuts is the original location on Leigh and Lombardy, and the demand remains higher there than the current possibility of supply,” Kelley said in the email. “During the Lombardy renovations we realized that we could refocus on the original shop, to better its ability to provide to Richmond. In part, it was necessary to combine efforts with Main St. to make this all happen quickly and smoothly.”
The company has felt growing pains before. Overwhelming demand and resulting shortage in staff and supplies forced it to temporarily shut down the Lombardy store a week after opening in 2013.