Wildflour Cafe + Bakery's version of the cronut. Photo by Vladimir Bunoan for ABS-CBNnews.com
MANILA – A total of four establishments here are now offering the “cronut,” a half-croissant, half-donut pastry that is all the rage in New York.
The first to introduce a version of the hybrid pastry to the local crowd is Wildflour Café + Bakery, a relatively new dining spot in Taguig City that has been getting raves for its breads and other breakfast items.
Calling it a “croissant donut,” Wildflour is careful not to be sued by the pastry’s original creator, Dominique Ansel, who trademarked the word “cronut” early this month.
Priced at P120 each, Wildflour’s croissant donuts come in different flavors such as chocolate, strawberry and vanilla. Customers are advised to pre-order as supply runs out fast.
Days later, the local franchise of the Taiwanese tea chain Chatime unveiled its take on the cronut, which it called the “kronut.” But unlike Wildflour’s, Chatime’s hybrid pastry is way cheaper at P55 each.
For now, the kronuts are only available in limited quantities at Chatime’s branch at Pioneer Center in Pasay City from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
The master franchise of Chatime in the country is owned by entrepreneur Johnlu Kua, who founded The French Baker, a local chain of bakeshops. It is still unclear if The French Baker will also introduce cronuts in its product lineup, which includes croissants, baguettes, and other bread and pastry products.
A third cronut contender in the country is Dolcelatte, a café and bakeshop along Quezon Avenue in Quezon City. Its items, called “croughnuts,” are only available on a pre-order basis.
Customers are limited to one dozen of the hybrid pastries, which come in blueberry, cream cheese and Nutella flavors.
A box of six is priced at P660, or P110 per piece.
Not surprisingly, American donut giant Dunkin’ Donuts also came up with its own version of the cronut, which is available in selected outlets in Metro Manila.
Called the “donut croissant,” it comes in two flavors – apple cinnamon and choco almond. The pastry is priced at P75.
Will cronuts be a hit in Manila?
While it has become a food craze in New York, it is still uncertain if the cronut will get the same treatment in the Philippines, which is home to donuts of different flavors, shapes and sizes.
But JJ Yulo, a known connoisseur and blogger, believes that the cronut has a chance to shine in the country.
“People here love donuts. Croissants, who doesn’t love croissants? It’s a lot of butter and sugar. It’s really tasty. [I think it’ll be a hit] as long as it doesn’t become too expensive. Puputok din 'yan,” Yulo told ABS-CBNnews.com.
He said, however, that not all establishments that are selling cronuts will succeed, stressing that the pastry is quite difficult to make.
“Feeling ko, the ones who will succeed are the ones who know how to do it properly,” he said. “Because it’s not easy to make. That’s the thing. Wildflour has a good chance.”
Long lines continue for the Indonesia-based J.CO Donuts and Coffee, which now has branches all over Manila. The brand became popular among Filipinos for its light and airy donuts in flavors like green tea, avocado and white chocolate with almonds.
Also a strong donut brand in the Philippines is the US chain Krispy Kreme, which recently launched cookie butter varieties. There are also the two donut mainstays in the country – Dunkin’ Donuts and Mister Donut – which offer cheap and premium items, catering to all market segments.
Aside from the franchises, the Philippines is also home to a number of local bakeshops such as Gavino’s, which specializes in the chewy “pon de ring” donuts.