As further evidence of the magnetism between coffee and donuts, longtime Seattle specialty coffee purveyor Pegasus Coffee Company has acquired Port Orchard, Washington-based Dude’s Donuts.
Pegasus Coffee President Matt Grady told DCN that the two brands, founded nearly four decades apart, will remain distinct, while Pegasus will help to scale the bakery operation.
“[The] initial plan is to increase delivery frequencies for existing donut customers and streamline operations,” Pegasus Coffee President Matt Grady told DCN. “Next step is cross-selling Dude’s Donuts and Pegasus Coffee whole bean and cold brew products to each others’ wholesale clients, and continuing to grow the wholesale business as an integrated sales and distribution platform while keeping the brands separate.”
Dude’s Donuts was founded in 2019 by married duo Easton and Amanda Shepard, offering gluten-free vegan donuts. Pegasus began carrying the donuts at its 42-year-old original Pegasus Coffee House on Bainbridge Island in February 2021, leading to discussions to acquire the brand before a deal was finalized in December.
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“Our goal is to keep the Dude’s Donuts product just as artisanal, delicious and fun as it has been, while strengthening its operating processes to make the business scalable,” Grady said in a public announcement of the acquisition. “We are thrilled to be the stewards of the incredible recipes and reputation that Easton and Amanda have built over the past two years. We’re going to great lengths to learn their baking process end to end so we can continue to make delicious plant-based gluten-free donuts that bring such joy to customers.”
In addition to its wholesale reach and the original Bainbridge Island shop, Pegasus operates the downtown Seattle Dexter Horton Coffee Bar, opened in 1983, the Seattle Tower coffee bar (2005), and a coffee trailer for events and popups.
Grady told DCN that one or perhaps two Dude’s Donuts branded retail outlets may be in the works in the Seattle area, with the first opening as soon as this summer.
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Nick Brown is the editor of Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine.