Wake N Bake to open carry-out doughnut shop downtown

PortCityDaily.com is your source for free news and information in the Wilmington area.

A Wake N Bake t-shirt hangs in the downtown storefront window of what will soon become the doughnut shop's second location. Photo by Christina Haley.
A Wake N Bake T-shirt hangs in the downtown storefront window of what will soon become the doughnut shop’s second location. Photo by Christina Haley.

When the lights flick on at downtown watering holes, there are a few options for late-night bites – a slice of pizza or a hot dog, maybe a taco or two.

Come fall, closing-time crowds can add doughnuts to the after-2 a.m. menu.

Wake N Bake owner Danny Tangredi announced Monday via Facebook live video that the popular Carolina Beach bakery would be bringing its sweet treats to a second location in the heart of the bustling commercial district.

The new doughnut shop will open at 114 Princess St. between Front and Water some time in October, Tangredi said in a follow-up interview.

It’s an area Tangredi said he has been eyeing since opening Wake N Bake back in 2014.

“We’ve been wanting to get downtown, really, as fast as possible,” he said by phone Monday from the current store. “It’s a really cool and hip place to be…The vibe is right for us down there.”

But it was customer demand that really got Tangredi focused on finding a more central spot for Wake N Bake fans, who often travel across town or even over the bridge for a sampling of the store’s wonderfully wacky doughnut selection. Wake N Bake tops its sweet treats with, among other things, bacon, a ghost pepper-infused chocolate glaze, potato chips, peanut butter cups and much-loved kids’ cereals.

Wake N Bakes downtown carry-out location will be stocked with the same fresh-made selection the Carolina Beach store offers.
Wake N Bake’s downtown carry-out location will be stocked with the same fresh-made selection the Carolina Beach store offers. Courtesy photo.

“We have a lot of customers who come to Carolina Beach from downtown, from the Leland area, from Porters Neck. So we were thinking, how can we get closer to the people who may be only coming to us once a month rather than once a week?” Tangredi said.

The Princess Street set-up, he added, will help accommodate those would-be frequent customers, as well as reach those who have yet to try Wake N Bake.

While similar in look and atmosphere to the original store, the new “boutique-y” site, at a cozy 700 square feet, will be carry-out only, Tangredi said.

“So, every morning we’ll be transporting fresh doughnuts from Carolina Beach and sending them to the downtown locations…We make everything fresh. We start sending doughnuts out in the morning and keep baking and baking and baking,” he noted. “But with the downtown nature, people are always on the move. So, they can come in and grab and go. It works for us and works for them.”

More eaters means even more baking at the Carolina Beach store, a task Tangredi said will allow the ovens and deep friers to stay hot longer in the day. That, he said, means downtown customers will be able to pick up a fresh-made doughnut after grabbing a beer or two.

While he’s still sorting out operations, Tangredi said he plans to keep the new Wake N Bake open late, at least on the weekends.

“We’ve wanted to be open near a bar for a long time,” he said. “Now, you’ll be able to grab a doughnut, just like you can grab slice a pizza.”

Hilary Snow is a reporter at Port City Daily. Reach her at hilary.s@portcitydaily.com.