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Greg Traylor doesn’t come close to resembling a little, old lady dressed in a white apron hand cranking out fresh donuts on a daily basis, but he does whoop out one tasty treat after another.
Traylor has worked in construction. He’s worked as a bull dozer operator. He’s operated a backhoe and done septic work and excavating, but cakes, pies and doughnuts?
Greg isn’t afraid of hard work, just ask anyone who knows him, but he never dreamed that upon opening a donut shop in Dry Ridge he’d be the busiest he’s ever been.
“On our second Saturday being open we were plum full,” he said, smiling. “I couldn’t imagine where everybody was coming from.”
Sugar Daddy’s Sweet Shop opened at 6 a.m. on Jan. 6 in the former site of Donna’s Little Shrimp on Broadway in Dry Ridge.
He sold 85 dozen by 10 a.m. on his first day.
“After those first few days, I said I was done it was so overwhelming,” Traylor said.
He was so busy after he opened that he began working at 9 p.m. the night before just so he could meet the demand the next morning.
He recruited family, friends, and anyone he could find.
“After his first few days in business, he asked me, ‘Mom what have I gotten myself into,’ said his mother, Alice Ingram.
Ingram, who owns Custom Designs by Alice, just a stone’s throw from Sugar Daddy’s, has pitched in. She’s no novice when it comes to restaurant work having previously managed several local eateries.
“I felt sorry for him,” she said, laughing. “He was working himself to death, so I’d come in and help him and then go open my shop.”
Mandy, Greg’s wife, worked for her mother-in-law until the bakery opened and now she can be found behind the counter filling orders.
Business, the couple says, is steady and has calmed down since the opening.
“It was chaos, but it’s better now,” Mandy said.
Mandy’s mother also helps on occasion when she’s not busy at the Crooked Creek General Store in Cordova.
Greg said the shop sells roughly 1,200 doughnuts during the week.
The top seller is glazed, followed by blueberry doughnuts and apple fritters, but the Traylor’s have added muffins, cupcakes and cookies. They can also make birthday and wedding cakes.
The birthday cakes are what sparked the idea to open a business.
“I’ve only been baking a couple of years, mostly for my kids birthdays, but thought a bakery would be a good idea,” he said.
“We knew we couldn’t make it on cakes alone, so we thought about doughnuts,” Mandy said.
Mandy takes credit for the name. Her inspiration came from “Cupcake Wars’ on the Food Network. When watching once, she saw a team called ‘Daddy Cakes’ so she just played around until she came up with Sugar Daddy’s.
“Well, he’s sweet and we’ve got two children,” she said of her husband of seven years.
Greg credits any cooking ability to his grandmothers, Helen Gabbert and Jean Traylor.
“They could cook anything,” he said, with his signature wide smile.
When he decided to take the plunge into the frying pan, he didn’t know the first thing about making donuts, so he asked around various kitchens and found a man in Georgetown willing to teach him.
Greg spent a week shadowing him prior to the opening of Sugar Daddy’s.
“We say he traded his hard hat for his apron,” said Mandy.
Surprisingly, the Traylor’s aren’t sick of doughnuts.
“Our boys, Boston and Jackson, can’t get enough of them,” Greg said.
Future plans include adding yeast rolls and specialty items for the holidays.
“With us being a sweet shop, it’s unlimited what we can do,” he said.