Status Dough Doughnuts and Coffee Shop Opens on Gay Street

Status Dough, 418 South Gay Street, Knoxville, February 2019

When I wrote the original article, Jimmy Wooten said he hoped to open the downtown store at 418 South Gay Street in January. They missed it by a day. Jimmy told me that after a hectic week doing last minute finishes, they decided to throw the doors open on First Friday and make it a soft opening.

Response has been good. Friday night was very busy and when I stopped in Saturday for coffee and doughnuts they were busy. What I didn’t know was that Urban Woman had slipped in before me to buy a dozen to share at Union Avenue Books. The confections got thumbs up all around and I’ve been back since.

Status Dough, 418 South Gay Street, Knoxville, February 2019

Status Dough, 418 South Gay Street, Knoxville, February 2019

I spoke briefly with co-owner Karen Wooten who says they are already noticing a difference between the downtown customers and their Bearden customers. It seems downtowners don’t have a cut-off for coffee drinking and they are selling more coffee than they’d expected. It appears that out west coffee sales slow after about 3:00 PM. They’ve upped their coffee orders.

The new shop is a very much re-imagined version of the Downtown Grind which occupied the spot previously. You’ll find significantly more seating on the front side and a bit added to the back side with a re-positioned and much smaller bar. Outdoor seating should appear in the spring.

Status Dough, 418 South Gay Street, Knoxville, February 2019

What you’ll find behind the counter is lots of delicious. I’m stuck on the coffee classic (the specific name evades me), but I need to branch out soon. Urban Boy prefers the sprinkle. I’ll have to shift around soon.

They serve Intelligentsia coffee and the $4 coffee/doughnut combination is a good way to go. You’ll also find a full range of coffee drinks as well as hot tea, hot chocolate, orange juice, milk and Lemonade. I’ve talked to people who are excited about the coffee and others who are doughnuts all the way, but it’s hard to beat a coffee and a doughnut.

Status Dough, 418 South Gay Street, Knoxville, February 2019

They’ve started out with long hours seven days a week. Support those long hours and they’ll keep it up. You’ll find them open Monday through Thursday from 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM, Friday from 7:00 AM to 10:00 PM, Saturday 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM and Sunday 8:00 AM to 9:00 PM.

They are located in the Phoenix Building between Maple Hall and Phoenix Pharmacy and Fountain.


  1. And besides the regular donuts, don’t forget their fantastic apple fritters and amazing Polish jelly donuts — perfectly matched with their wonderful, full-bodied coffee. And now it’s no longer necessary to take the drive out to Bearden for my coffee & donut fix! My prayers have been answered!

    • Chris Eaker says

      I second the apple fritters. I used to think Dippin Donuts had the best apple fritters until I tasted Status’. Hands down the best I’ve ever had. And the donuts are amazing too.

  2. Kevin Mader says

    This is going to be the gem ofdowntown Knoxville. I have been following status dough for awhile and it’s one of the nicest owners and amazing doughnuts. We need to support this great company

  3. Love Status Dough! So glad they opened a shop downtown. Great location too! Curious, Alan, are they making them at the Bearden location and transporting them to downtown, or actually frying them on site? I didn’t read anything about putting in a grease interceptor system, so I’m assuming they’re making them in Bearden?

  4. Anne Pittenger says

    Karen and Jimmy are wonderful people, and their amazing Status Dough proves how much they care about providing exceptional products and taking good care of their customers.
    Glad they’re downtown. Love them!

  5. I second the coffee old fashioned(?) and the apple fritter! Karen and Jimmy are wonderful people working hard to serve quality products. I know they will do great Downtown!! Everybody, skip your diet for one day … and indulge! You won’t be sorry!!

  6. If they could introduce an espresso-infused donut and a donut-flavored mocha latte, that would be the complete package! LOL

  7. Kristof Czartoryski says

    I love Status Dough!
    I love Karen & Jimmy too.
    Many reasons…

  8. I have mixed feelings about this: I won’t have to drive to Bearden to buy the best doughnuts I’ve ever eaten (as well as seeing two of the nicest people I’ve ever met). But I will probably have to buy a new wardrobe after all the weight I’ll gain from eating the BEST doughnuts I’ve ever had much more frequently. So glad you’ve come downtown Jimmy and Karen.

  9. The real congrats go to our downtown Knoxville community as we are the real beneficiaries of Karen and Jimmy’s “sweet dreams” and of course their “glazed” ambitions which provide us the best dang donuts in East TN. If you haven’t tried them. Nows your chance…. they are running “circles” around the rest.

    Nothing status quo about Status Dough and I know that all you readers will get a “rise”out of this “hole” post!

  10. Lisa Hood Skinner says

    When Status Dough opened up in Bearden, it became an immediate favorite for our employees at nearby Knoxville Animal Clinic (on Homberg Drive). Now that Status Dough’s downtown branch has opened up practically across the street from our apartment, we have ALL the bases covered. The apple fritters are what dreams are made of…seriously! WELCOME to downtown!

  11. Oh how bittersweet! I served coffee at the Downtown Grind in that spot for thirteen years! It looks perfectly marvelous- especially those strawberry ones😎

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