Duck Donuts, An Outer Banks Tradition

I’m told by a 6-year-old named Max that he could probably eat 90.

“Or maybe two, one, or three,” he says.

His older brother, Lee, is more pragmatic in his answer.

“I mean, they’re big, so I could probably eat like, two — maybe.”

Duck Donuts are a delicious tradition at the Outer Banks
PHOTOGRAPH BY CHRIS HANNANT

The food in question is this: doughnuts. But to simply say “doughnuts” would be a disservice to the genuine article. These are doughnuts as they were intended to be made and eaten. They’re fresh off the fryer, crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside, and most notably: glazed and topped to order. They’re Duck Donuts.

The line to get them snakes out the door at 9:30 a.m. on a Monday, but the same could be said about any morning on any given day of the week. The thing is, no one waiting is bothered by the line. They breathe in the aroma of dough that’s getting its tantalizing golden brown finish — the smell clings to the air like salt along the beachfront just blocks away. Everyone laughs and talks among each other while fantasizing about possible toppings. And they’re more than willing to wait in the same line all over again before they leave the Outer Banks and head home at the end of the week.

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