The baby of James and Amy St. Peter has actually had some soft opening shifts this week -- serving their neighbors and the brave fans who tried the door and found the doughnut case ready and waiting. And James St. Peter says the only thing truly grand about this Sunday's 9 a.m. grand opening is the word "grand." "I'm just going to reach up there and pull that string," he said pointing to the open sign. "there won't be any balloons or waving Statue of Liberty outside." The plan is to put out the pastries and welcome the neighborhood, just as any day.
But before service was even possible, the St. Peters, their staff and others put a ton of effort into the shop over the course of two and a half months. All of the furniture is vintage and reclaimed, the walls' racing stripes and blackboards painted by Amy. Local artist Kristen Johnson contributed a painting of beloved hippies, or "hyppies" as the shop spells it. Funny side note: When James met Chris Robinson and told him about his inclusion in the painting, Robinson replied, "All right. I made it." Such a hyppie response.
Speaking of making it, James and his staff not only spent time busy revamping cabinets and kitchen, but also testing new recipes to add to the arsenal of 425 doughnuts Hypnotic already claims. Customers can browse standard doughnuts as well as daily specials, but the health nuts also have something to look forward to: Hypnotic will prepare steel cut oats, yogurt and other items perfect for before or after a lap around White Rock. And of course, there are the chicken biscuits.
The St. Peters agree that the most difficult part of bringing Hypnotic Doughnuts to the Garland Road location has been simple organization of who's doing what plus the age-old business riddle of how to get the most product out in the shortest time. But they both have faith in their crew of six, which is something James says separates them from other doughnut shops: "They won't take the time to train staff because they think they can do it best." He explains he doesn't understand why other owners wouldn't take weeks to train staff to avoid doing it all themselves for 40 years.
Still they're leaving some things to time: things like French Press coffee and the Goodfellas row of seats outside for just watching the cars go by. And while some things about Hypnotic might scream um, well, "munchies," James laughs at how often he gets asked if the shop is kid-friendly and bong-free. "C'mon! We're just a doughnut shop!"
Hypnotic Donuts initial store hours are 6 a.m. to noon Mondays through Fridays, 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays, and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays. The store hopes to host evening and late night events in the future.
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