Local Lion: A Donut Shop for Boone

Article Published: May. 3, 2012 | Modified: May. 3, 2012
Local Lion: A Donut Shop for Boone

Josiah Davis and wife Meredith, not pictured, recently opened Local Lion, a donut and coffee shop, in Boone.

Photo by Karen Sabo

Josiah and Meredith Davis have filled a hole in Boone.

Monday, April 30, was the first day that Local Lion Coffee and Donuts was open for business and, by noon, they had sold out of donuts. “We were very, very busy,” co-owner and operator Josiah Davis said.

He and wife Meredith are new to selling donuts, but not to business itself or cooking. They have opened the first donut shop in Boone since Daylight Donuts closed a couple years back on King Street, preceded by the closing of longtime area institution Granny’s Donuts 10 years ago.

“We were looking for what was missing,” said Davis of his decision to open his new venture on Blowing Rock Road. “It’s been years since we had good donuts in Boone.”

Although youthful, Davis said that this is the second business he has owned. He does not have a background specifically in baking, but was head chef at The Peddler Steakhouse before working with his wife at Crossnore School in Avery County for six years.

The Davises were looking for a business venture when they found a Craigslist ad offering free training along with the purchase of used baking equipment. The sellers were Tim and Krystal Decker of Smoky Mountain Bakery in Roan Mountain, Tenn.

The Deckers spent many years baking professionally in northern California before moving to Roan Mountain. After setting up their new Tennessee bakery, they sought to pass on some of their equipment, along with their expertise.

“We bought it on the spot, (with) no space and no loan,” Davis said, describing the equipment that would be crucial to his new business.

The Deckers shared their expertise with the younger couple, coming to help the Davises on Local Lion’s opening day. “They’ve got a passion about what we’re doing … carrying on the tradition,” Davis said.

Josiah and Meredith Davis make their products from scratch, not only baking donuts fresh and very early each morning, but even grinding beans for specialty coffee drinks as orders come in.

Customers may try the drive-through or park and come in the newly renovated space, which formerly housed a TCBY yogurt shop.

Their selection will vary daily, with lemon curd filled, berry glazed, Bavarian and espresso cream filled donuts among those offered so far. And while they closed early after their first day of business, they plan to eventually extend shop hours far beyond the current 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. span.

“We want to stay open until 2 a.m. by next fall,” Davis said, explaining that he wants to offer another late-night option for students on weekends. “I think people will want to have a place to hang out other than a bar.”

Local Lion is already a hangout both for students and working locals. Employee Anna Davis, younger sister of Josiah, said that among their customers on the first day was a police officer, who told her he had parked his police car at the lot next door and walked over so as not to stereotype himself.
“I may have to bring him a dozen,” she said.

Local Lion is at 791 Blowing Rock Road in Boone. Current hours are Monday through Saturday, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. (or until they sell out of donuts).

Beat It

Got restaurant news? Email editor Frank Ruggiero at (frank@mountaintimes.com) or call (828) 264-6397.

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