When I got to my hotel room at the conclusion of Day 1, I zonked out quickly. And for good reason. 400+ miles of driving, barely any sleep on the flight to Charlotte, and a lot of good food/beer. Probably the best sleep I had in months.
When I got up, it was already nearly 8:30 AM and I already had another full day of adventures planned. Oops.
I wanted a quick bite and some coffee, and after a quick Google search, Duck Donuts was a perfect fit. I told a few of my friends who are University of Oregon alums (Ducks) that they should take a trip here and wear their U of O gear for fun.
You can't go wrong with fresh doughnuts and hot coffee. Even when it was already warm outside, hot coffee is the way to go for me. Heck, I already eat ice cream when it's freezing, so why not hot beverages in hot weather?
From what I gathered, they really only do the traditional-looking cake doughnuts here. Most people get a dozen to go, whether it's their "Duck Dozen" or another random assortment.
You order at the far end of the shop and get your order near the entrance/exit. They'll call your number on your receipt when it's ready, and I probably clearly showed I was not from the area by not responding to my order number right away.
I got a doughnut with Key Lime icing and Graham Cracker crumbles ($1.40). I also got a 16 oz coffee ($2.40) because extra caffeine ftw here.
Hands down one of the best doughnuts I've ever had, and it won't break the bank. It's one thing to have outstanding (and very warm) icing and graham cracker crumbles, but very rarely do I get one that feels piping hot fresh from the fryer. But this one left a permanent positive impression.
It made me almost want to jump out of my seat and order another one on the spot. But I knew I needed to save room for my eating adventures. I truly needed that extra willpower this time, too.
Even the coffee was very good, which I don't always get at doughnut shops. I went with the Riptide Roast, a darker roast, but there's a lighter roast (Lighthouse Blend), decaf, and a flavored option (Southern Pecan on my visit).
Duck Donuts is open seven days a week and are only closed for certain holidays.
I frequently tell myself that getting the right breakfast/snack in the morning can sets the tone for the rest of the day. Duck Donuts gave me that kickass start to Day 2. If I'm in Charlotte again, you know I'm heading here again. 9.5/10