I am a huge fan of Krispy Kreme, so much so that I used to order a dozen and eat them all myself. I first had Krispy Kreme in Canada, then I came back to Taiwan and never saw it again for another decade, until recently when I had them again in Korea and Philippines.
|going crazy in Korea with 2 dozen doughnuts|
While I was thrilled to have them again in Asia, I am not sure they have a market here. Being a true American brand, their doughnuts are ridiculously high in sugar and fat content, and I wonder if Asians can accept such a heavy flavour? From what I gathered, their shops in HK shut down some time ago, in Malaysia they downsized from a shop to a stall in the mall, and the one in Philippines wasn't too busy either. For Taiwan, I can say for sure that we certainly can't take that much sugar in solid form, so I was quite surprised when I learned that Krispy Kreme was opening its first store in Taiwan back in November 2013.
A very prominent feature of Taiwanese people is that most of us like to line up for things. Line up for Hello Kitty toys, line up for the giant rubber duck, line up for anything that is new and trendy. Krispy Kreme is no exception to this phenomenon. Most people have never even heard of the brand until it opened in Taiwan, but they know it's new, or they've heard someone said it's good, so they line up for it. And do they actually like it? Nope, most people say it's a one-time deal for them because it's too sweet. I think the longest record waiting time was 4 hours for a box of doughnuts, which is just crazy!
Those who are not a fan of lining up or foreigners who are not new to KK have made sarcastic remarks about how those in line have nothing better to do with their life, or that they are blind followers, calling it "a Taiwanese thing to line up for shitty things." While I agree it's crazy to line up for more than an hour for anything, I roll my eyes when people call it a "Taiwanese thing." The first Krispy Kreme in Canada opened when I was in grade school, and on the first day, some of my classmates skipped school just so they could get the free paper crowns and be the first to buy the doughnuts. They were white, so I don't think they are Taiwanese?
Because of me and my boyfriend's aversion to line-ups, I never had Krispy Kreme in Taiwan, until we went to the movies a few days ago (we watched RoboCop and I wrote a short review here). We had more than a hour to spare, but no desire to shop, so when I saw the Krispy Kreme line-up was quite short, I thought why not and joined the crowd. As the first picture shows, the waiting time was around 30 minutes and was bearable. But what upset me is that they had only 4 flavours left because it was too late in the day. I was expecting to fill my dozen with rainbow colours! How am I supposed to do that with chocolate, chocolate and plain? Even though I didn't really like the flavours they got, I still bought a dozen because I already "invested" my time into it. I was sulky for a while, then my mood was lifted by the Valentine decoration. At least I get pretty packaging!
I don't think Krispy Kreme will be around for long, after its trendiness wears off it will lose a lot of customers, and I must go back another time to fulfill my rainbow dozen dream before it shut down!
Have you ever had Krispy Kreme? Did you like it?
How's the stores in your country doing?