Dunkin’ Donuts came back to the Twin Cities two years ago. Now, just Dunkin’ has arrived.
The chain’s newest location opened Thursday at 6519 Penn Av. S. in Richfield. In addition to the shorter name, the new location has a layout that looks more like a coffee shop.
A grand-opening event is scheduled for Nov. 30.
The Richfield location is the sixth stand-alone restaurant for Dunkin’ in the Twin Cities. Since returning to the market in 2016, it has opened restaurants in Andover, Maple Grove, New Hope, Roseville and West St. Paul. It also has locations in Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport and the Great Wolf Lodge in Bloomington.
The new Richfield outlet is one of 50 new or remodeled Dunkin’ restaurants with the new look. The Canton, Mass.-based company in September said it would stop using “donuts” in its name and that most of its 12,500 locations would make the change in early 2019.
In the new layout seen in the Richfield location, doughnuts are closer to customers, arranged in trays in a display case rather than on racks behind the counter. The new restaurant also has new espresso equipment and tap system for serving cold beverages, including nitro-infused cold brew coffee.
Dunkin’ outlets are chiefly run by franchisees in Eastern states. In parts of New England, they seem to be on every corner. West of the Mississippi, Dunkin’ is found in a relative handful of metro areas, including Dallas-Fort Worth, Denver, Phoenix and Southern California.
Never a major presence in Minnesota, the chain disappeared when a franchisee closed a location in Austin in 2005. Dunkin’ executives renewed a push into the state four years ago and subsequently lined up two franchisees, one in Chicago and another in the Twin Cities, to invest in locations.