When Tom Dobrinski, owner of Epic Donuts on 12314 Meridian Ave. E. on South Hill, announced his shop would be closing its doors on Jan. 13, he was met with an overwhelming response from the community.
“If you look at Yelp and on Facebook, people love (Epic Donuts),” Dobrinski said. “We’ve been awesome with the community, and community has been great with us.”
The reason for the Epic Donuts closure wasn’t because the shop was doing poorly; rather, Dobrinski wanted to attribute more attention to his family.
“We have family time to focus on,” Dobrinksi said.
Dobrinksi lives in Sunrise with his wife and has two daughters. After starting out in the restaurant business when he was 17, Dobrinski held various management positions in the industry before opening Epic Donuts in 2013.
The theme of the gourmet donut shop stemmed from the Dobrinski family’s interest in Disney.
At Disneyland, Dobrinski said his family would “sit in Tomorrowland and just look around.” His daughter came up with the Epic Donuts name, and donut flavor ideas were suggested to the family on flights home, after they generated a conversation with other passengers.
“My wife just started writing (flavors) down,” Dobrinski said.
The shop’s “Tastiest Treats in the Galaxy” ranged across 60 different flavors.
But as the years went by, the strain of running a business took its toll on Dobrinski.
Every day, he worked from 2 a.m. until 3 p.m. On important holidays, instead of having dinner with his family, Dobrinski found himself delivering donuts.
“For the last four years, this is all I’ve done,” Dobrinski said. “I’m overwhelmed and I’m tired.”
But while Dobrinski is looking forward to taking time with his family, he’s also saddened to leave the business, where he says he’s made many friends.
Kent Attwood, a frequent customer of Epic Donuts, became friends with Dobrinski when the shop first opened.
“Everyone loves Tom,” Attwood said. “He’s so giving. He put his whole life into this (business)... Tom is epic.”
I’m sad that we’re closing the business but happy with what we’ve accomplished.
Tom Dobrinkski, owner of Epic Donuts
As of late last week, Dobrinski was negotiating the sale of Epic Donuts with a local buyer. The sale was not complete as of Monday, but Dobrinski was “90 percent” certain that a deal could be worked out to save the shop.
“There’s a ton of interest (in the spot),” Dobrinski said. “The nice thing is that everybody’s like, no, we can’t let (Epic Donuts) die.”
For now, Dobrinski wants to thank his customers for four years of support.
“I’m happy with what we’ve accomplished,” he said.