BUSINESS and cravings—do they actually mix?
When people have a hankering for food, lechon, doughnuts, pasta and kimbap, they usually turn to their phones and rely on third-party delivery apps. However, for 25-year-old chef Charmine Go, she took matters into her own hands and started making them and then selling them.
“Lai Cha was created because of a wake-up call. It was mid-May and I realized that I had been doing literally nothing to enhance my skills or progress in my career. I didn’t want to waste another year, waiting for things to happen or making excuses rather brought about by the pandemic. I got up and created Lai Cha with the objective of sharing to others what I was currently craving,” she shared.
Like any other entrepreneur who started a business during the most uncertain era, a.k.a the pandemic, Charmine wasn’t confident at first.
“I started with doughnuts because I didn’t want to invest any big capital. For doughnuts, you just need a stove to fry them. So our capital was basically just for our ingredients.”
Over the course of creating doughnuts, Charmine was surprised to find herself purchasing new equipment every month that would help her speed things up and perfect her craft.
She also attributes her success to the #SupportLocal campaign which encourages everyone to support small businesses.
Among the long list of doughnut flavors available, there’s one that exudes “main character energy.”
Glistening in all that sweet, sweet glaze and filled with über big strawberries, if the doughnut could just speak for itself, it would say, “Please, stop!”
Lai Cha’s strawberry-filled doughnuts are indeed filled to the brim. They’re similar to the ones you see on Instagram that make you go, “Lami-a ani oy!”
Charmine said these were suggested by a close friend. At first, she didn’t expect them to be a hit because of the cost.
“Strawberries are flown from the U.S. and so they definitely are pricey. However, because there have been repeat customers, I guess people will really pay for good food. We definitely do not skimp on the strawberries, they are glazed as well as the doughnuts too!”
The customers’ common reaction when purchasing these doughnuts runs from “Wow, you weren’t exaggerating about it being strawberry-filled,” to simply ordering a bigger box the next time they place an order.
Those who are planning to get their hands on these berry-filled doughnuts should catch Lai Cha’s order forms every Sunday. One can send a message on Facebook (Lai Cha by Charmine Go) or Instagram (@laicha.ph). Orders may also be placed through this number: 09176226489.