SOUTH OGDEN — Craving a cinnamon sugar doughnut with chocolate chips, sprinkles, and hot fudge on top? No problem.
How about a doughnut covered in peanut butter and Oreo cookie crumbles? Fruity Pebbles and lemon icing? The Mountain Donuts decorating crew will get right on it.
"We make doughnuts fresh throughout the day that you get to decorate," shop owner Paul Ellington said. "If you like doughnuts, it doesn't get much better."
Paul and Kris Ellington opened Mountain Donuts at 3836 Washington Blvd. in South Ogden earlier this summer — on June 1, National Doughnut Day. The couple is originally from Ohio and intended to retire to the small condo they owned in Eden in a few years.
Their retirement plan got sped up, and soon the two were tossing around ideas for a business. Kris had experience in the food industry and Paul has worked previously as independent businessman, so they ended up settling on opening a gourmet doughnut shop.
"We love doughnuts. It literally is as simple as that," Paul said.
The first three months of business have gone by in "a blink," Paul said, with little sleep in between as the couple focused on providing good, consistent service for their customers.
Mountain Donuts is a custom doughnut shop, specializing in vanilla cake doughnuts with a variety of toppings. Customers grab a menu when they walk in and pick from the numerous coatings, toppings and drizzles offered to create the doughnut of their dreams.
Or, if coming up with your own sugary combos is too daunting, Mountain Donuts has several staff favorites to choose from as well. The shop's best seller is the Maple Bacon featuring — you guessed it — bacon on top of maple icing, closely followed by the Buckeye, which has chocolate icing, peanut butter chips, and chocolate drizzle.
Customers can watch the decorating process from behind a glass window — a favorite part of the Mountain Donuts' youngest customers, Kris said.
The staff is always experimenting with flavors and combos, Kris said, and they aim to tailor their flavors to the season. Pumpkin spice and apple crisp flavored doughnuts are on the way for fall, she said.
"We've got a phenomenal staff. They're very creative and always thinking of great ideas," she said. "Our customers have taught us a lot too. They're coming up with ideas and we'll be like, 'That's an awesome idea.'"
It took the Ellingtons about a year of market research ("Basically, we drove around the country eating doughnuts," Paul said) to settle on the types of doughnuts they wanted to make and how they wanted their shop to work.
"We gathered all the pieces that we liked from individual shops and saw some needs that other shops weren't doing," Kris said.
For instance, the Ellingtons made sure they had grab and go boxes in the half-dozen and dozen size for customers who might not have time to go the fully customized route. They also take larger orders online or over the phone for special events or companies.
Mountain Donuts is open Monday through Saturday from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Originally, the Ellingtons thought they'd close up shop for the day by mid-afternoon. But they found that the demand for doughnuts went well past breakfast.
"It comes in waves. At 8:30 this morning, we'd sold, like, one dozen doughnuts and you're going, 'Wow, is anybody going to come and buy doughnuts today?' Thirty minutes later, it's full of people," Paul said, glancing over to the bustling decorating counter. "This is the nice problem to have."