'A vacation for your taste buds'

Savannah Vasquez
Destination Little Donuts customers are greeted with 50 fun-named flavors, but creating your own donut is also a fun option.

Fancy a donut? How about a fancy donut?

There’s a new place to get your fix at Destination Little Donuts in the Fresh Market shopping plaza. The new store features cake donuts with ample toppings that you can order from the menu or custom design your own creation.

When asked what sparked the idea for the business, owner Jamie Habel said when life handed her lemons she made lemonade.

“I was in banking for 22 years but then two years ago on Valentine’s Day my husband and I got hit by a car on our motorcycle and due to short-term memory loss I sustained from a head injury I was not able to go back to my job,” she said. “I’m too young to retire and I thought, ‘I want to do something, invest in something that will make people happy and be fun to do,’ so I created this concept.”

Destination Little Donuts offers 50 menu-suggested donut ideas such as The Redfish, with gummy Swedish Fish on top, the Keylime Pie, which is of course a local dessert specialty, and the E.T. Phone Home with crushed Reece’s Pieces on top. But if you are feeling creative, the topping options are limitless to get fancy with your own donut creation.

“We have tons of toppings on our topping bar and we make the donuts right here so you know they are all made fresh every single day,” said Habel. “The base is always a cake donut and the fun is what we top them with. Our slogan is, ‘Because your taste buds deserve a vacation too.’”

In addition to donuts, Habel also launched her own creation the Doughchos.

“A lot of donut stores have about 25-percent waste with the dough so I take the extra dough and press them on a Panini press and then top them with toppings.”

The result? A crunchy yet chewy-in-the-middle donut chip, smothered in delicious toppings much like nachos, thus the name doughchos.

And everybody knows you can’t have donuts without coffee, and Destination Little Donuts does not disappoint.

“People are so particular on their coffee flavors,” said Habel. “I didn’t want them to have to come here and then go somewhere else so I have Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, McCafe and Seattle’s Best coffee as well as cappuccino and mocha latte.”

For the kids, if creating their own donut isn’t exciting enough, they can grab a souvenir bucket of powdered donuts and either bring the bucket back for a dis-counted refill or take it to the beach and build a sandcastle.

As for the atmosphere, the entire store has a vacation vibe to it, from the brightly painted walls to the surf and skate motif to the map of America on the wall ready for visitors to pin where they are from. However, if you look closely, long-time Destin residents may notice a few features from Destin of days past.

“My husband first came to Destin in 1988 and back then there was a little place called the Village Cheese Shop,” said Habel. “The two booths in the back and the restaurant sign are both from that shop.”

Destination Little Donuts is open now from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. and is located at 4463 Commons Drive in the Plantation Plaza near Fresh Market. For more information visit mylittledonuts.com, find them on Facebook or call 424-5670.

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