Food Daily Dish

Cronut confusion? DK's Donuts forced to change name of its DKronut

After a run-in with a trademark, Santa Monica doughnut shop DK's Donuts & Bakery is changing the name of its croissant-doughnut hybrid from DKronuts to the somewhat less catchy DK Double Decker O-Nut.

It's no less tasty, says Mayly Tao, who co-owns the family-run bakery with her brother Sean. The Taos really ran with the concept of the croissant doughnut, also known as the Cronut -- originated by New York patisserie Dominique Ansel, which sparked a worldwide craze after its launch in May.

Since DK's started selling its version of the croissant-doughnut a couple of months ago, the number of its flavors has expanded to more than a dozen, including a sausage-egg-and-cheese version and smaller O-Nut (no double-decker) versions. There's even a giant customizable birthday "Texas-sized" O-Nut, "the biggest kind of doughnut croissant that anyone's ever seen," Mayly Tao says.

Double Decker O-Nut flavors include special house cream, Nutella, "DK’s famous glazed," pineapple with toasted coconut, coconut with toasted coconut, guava, blueberries and cream, strawberries and cream, apricot, the "almight éclair" (DK's house cream and drizzled with chocolate), lemon, taro, cookies and cream, "maple bacon bliss" and bacon, egg and cheese.

The Taos called their croissant doughnuts DKronuts, using part of the 32-year-old bakery's name. But earlier this week the bakery received notification from the Cook Law Group on behalf of Dominique Ansel Bakery to stop using the name "Kronut," referring to the DKronut. The Cronut is officially trademarked.

The letter said the use of "Kronut" infringes on Dominique Ansel's intellectual property rights and would probably confuse customers.

"We were disappointed" about changing the name, Mayly said. "It's our own rendition of a croissant and doughnut hybrid. We made our own recipe; it's a family recipe. We've come up with all these types of flavors." The Cronut is available in one flavor that changes monthly. 

Mayly wouldn't say how many DK's sells daily, only that "we make a lot, and we make them all day."

1614 Santa Monica Blvd., Santa Monica, (310) 829-2512.

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