Two words have been floating around downtown Rochester for weeks like crumbs in a cup of coffee.
Locals, including one self-described "humongous" Rochester fan (Yes, I'm looking at you Courtney. Heh) who will only use highway exits in Wisconsin that lead to a DD, have been wondering if all of this Dunkin' talk is just a cream-filled fantasy or could a shop be on its way to the Med City.
The short answer is … it's possible.
The slightly longer answer is that it doesn't seem very likely in the near future, but it could happen.
Dunkin' Donuts rolled out of Minnesota a while back. The final shop in the state, which was surprisingly based in Austin, frosted its last long john in 2005.
Since then, the Dunkin' Donuts tally in the Land of 10,000 Lakes has been zero. In 2008 and 2009, the popular chain talked about a big return to Minnesota, but that all turned out to be false alarms.
However, the Canton, Mass.-based chain currently is recruiting franchisees in Minnesota. And the recruiting is reaching beyond the Twin Cities.
The coffee and baked good chain has about 10,000 stores worldwide, including about 7,000 franchised restaurants in 36 states.
When asked directly if the orange-and-pink logo might be on the way to Rochester, company officials stated that no plans are in the works. They declined to say if they're negotiating for a possible franchise here.
Olmsted County is only one of 85 Minnesota counties with an available Dunkin' franchise. Winona and Houston counties are already reserved for franchises. St. Louis County is only one marked as the site of a "future" Dunkin' Donuts location, according to the company's website.
Franchise information lists that the "preferred" building is 1,200 to 2,600 square feet, has a drive-through window and can be open 24-hours a day. Potential franchisees need to have a minimum of $250,000 in "liquid capital" and $50,000 net worth per location. The company prefers each franchisee be responsible for multiple locations.
The bottom line is that it doesn't look hopeful for Dunkin' Donuts opening soon in Rochester, but it could eventually happen.