A new donut shop has popped up just in time for the holidays. The Donut Palace opened at 706 N 11th St. in Aggieville last month to a crowd of donut lovers clamoring for the classic childhood favorites. These donuts are light and fluffy treats that make the ideal breakfast.
It’s no surprise that Michelle Sir, the owner, has a passion for donuts.
“I love the colors,” Sir said. “I love to dip them in the colors and then sprinkle the sprinkles. They taste good, especially in the winter with coffee.”
Sir said it hasn’t always been her dream to own a donut shop. She was born in Cambodia and came to the United States after she married, where she settled in Texas with her husband. She said it was there she took a job at a donut shop and developed her magic touch. Her boss, impressed, offered her the chance to buy an already established shop in Abilene, Kansas. In 2014, she said she jumped at the chance.
Sir said it wasn’t long before she had a loyal clientele built up. She had customers who drove over from Junction City routinely, even asking her to open other locations. After three years, she gave in and expanded to Junction City.
People drove in from as far as Manhattan on Sundays to get donuts, Sir said. Soon they were urging her to expand again, this time to Manhattan.
“They keep saying, ‘come open the store in Manhattan because your donuts — no one can do the same,’” Sir said.
After surviving the pandemic and ensuring her shop in Junction City was running smoothly, Sir began the process of opening her shop in Aggieville. Sir said she loves having a location in Manhattan because of her customers.
“They support me a lot,” Sir said. “I really appreciate the people in Manhattan. I love them so much.”
The donuts are made fresh daily. Sir and her husband, Kevin, start making the donuts at midnight. They are made in Junction City and brought over, as her shop in Manhattan isn’t set up for cooking on site.
“We have a lot of work to do because we make [the donuts] fresh every day,” Sir said.
Her selections include standard raised yeast and cake donuts in a variety of flavors. She also makes old fashioneds, long johns, bear claws, twists, apple fritters, cinnamon rolls and the ever-popular donut holes. She also offers sausage rolls and croissants and plans to add burritos soon. Coffee, milk and hot chocolate are offered to complement the pastries.
Sir said she wants customers to know her products are affordable and delicious.
“I want everybody to be happy because they’re really cheap and everybody can eat them,” Sir said. “I’m from a poor country and it’s really important to me.”
The Donut Palace is open Monday through Saturday from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. On Sunday, her hours are 5:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.