Chin and Jennifer Kim watched the Carl's Jr. go out of business outside their Carmel Mountain Ranch donut shop. Sesame Donuts has been in the same strip mall for 27 years, 17 of those years owned by the Kims.
The old Carl's Jr. has been going through renovations lately. It's only 50 yards away and the Chin wanted to know about their new neighbors. That's why he was shocked when a customer told them that neighbor would be a Krispy Kreme Donut Shop.
"I was surprised, I didn't believe it," said Chin. Since the word has gotten out to their customers, many are mad a large donut chain would set up so close to their favorite shop.
"I can't believe what they're doing to these people," said Monte Montenarano. The Word War II veteran sits with other vets every Monday in the Kim's donut shop.
"We got a beautiful one here," said Vietnam Vet Fred DiCarlo, "why do we need that competition."
Mark Hong helped broker the deal between the property owner and Krispy Kreme. It is not managed by the same landlord that owns the Sesame Donuts building. Hong says he feels for the Kim's but says no matter what they put in the old Carl's Jr., it would conflict with someone.
But Jennifer Kim says the Krispy Kreme location is too close, even sharing the same parking lot. She knows they have loyal customers but will loyalty continue once Krispy Kreme opens its doors? They will have to wait till this Summer to find out.
But customer Walter Bush is confident, "It's going to be difficult but I think they are going to survive."