Earlybirds may have a different experience, but when I arrive at Shipley's Donuts on Lebanon Road, usually around lunchtime, all that remains of the inventory is a single tray half-full of doughnuts. The first couple of times, I thought it was a fluke, but it's happened often.
The reason has me stumped. Maybe Shipley has the tightest inventory control ever, only preparing what they know will sell out? Or maybe people who arrive by 7 a.m. are greeted with mounds of hot, fresh doughnuts that sell like the proverbial hotcakes? Maybe the owners don't want to close the doors when there are still unsold doughnuts but also don't want to make anything that would bring in a lunch crowd?
As for the flavors by noon, usually there is one remaining creme-filled, a lot of plain doughnuts, and maybe a cake doughnut or two. Are earlier arrivals greeted by blueberry doughnut holes, buttermilk apple fritters, or maple-glazed dunkers?
The other thing I wonder about is coffee. Before good coffee was available everywhere, Shipley was known for its better-then-average coffee. I never arrive early enough to get coffee -- has anyone had it lately?