Okay, I've got a confession. I hate Krispy Kreme donuts. Really. As far as donuts go, they're pretty bad. Of course, MOST, if not all, of the independent donut shops in Northern California (a dying breed) use the exact same recipes and they're bland and unimaginative, and no better than grocery store bakery donuts.
I miss Duncan Donuts. And so does my sister.
Strangely, there was ONE lone Duncan Donuts in Northern California for DECADES, and it was located in South San Jose, a bit of a drive for me. A few years back, I made one of my rare trips there to get a dozen of my favorites -- chocolate honey dips! As I pulled up I noticed the sign on the front had been changed to "Sunny Donuts". Oh, the humanity! I fell to my knees, sobbing uncontrollably, as visions of little Munchkins(tm), nailed to the cross with 10 penny nails, their gooey essences dripping from a hole that nature never intended (a hole in a donut hole is kind of a surreal image), flashed through my head.
This was just too, too, wrong for me to even contemplate.
I looked through the plate glass front, my vision tear blurred, and noticed a tray of dark, sinful creations. Could it be? I stumbled in, realizing that mere moments before I had been in danger of going into shock and losing consciousness, and scanned the familiar row of greasy creations.
"These, these," I said pointing. I had no words to express my joy. I could spot a chocolate honey dip a mile away. Really. And the greasy smell of fried decadence filled my soul like water in a glass.
"Can I help you?" the guy behind the counter asked.
Man, could he. I stifled a laugh as I waited for the words to return and feigned indecisiveness. When I was finally able to speak again, I ask if they were the same donuts that they made under the Duncan Donuts name, and he said, "Yeah, we're using the same recipes, we've just changed the name."
I was too elated to ask "why" as I placed my order.
That was about 5 years ago, a lifetime in donut years, and I haven't been back since. My sister, who pines for their fluffy cream-filled monstrosities, is really sick this week with the flu from hell that's been pounding folks around these parts. So tomorrow, I've decided to drive to Sunny Donuts, which is now about 2 hours away from where I live, and buy her a dozen of her favorites. I just got off the phone with them, to make sure they're still there and still using the same recipes.
"Are you the place that used to be Duncan Donuts?"
"Yeah, we changed our name 5 years ago."
"Do you still make the chocolate honey dipped donuts?"
"Oh sure," he confirmed.
Okay, I didn't ask about the creme-filled donuts because I don't remember what they were called (in Northern CA, you really can't get them -- only custard or jelly filled). No, that's a lie -- I forgot to ask. I know I told you I was going for my sister...and I am, really. This is a selfless example of brotherly love...but while I'm there...
Oh, and if you're reading this in time and want me to pick some real donuts up for you, give me a call.