Why THIS donut?

I remember when I worked with (the now no longer) Krispy Kreme in Hong Kong the best-selling donut was the New York Cheesecake. The assumption was cheesescake, as a flavor, tends to do well because it is the right level of sweetness for a Chinese palette, i.e. an understated semi-sweet. As a texture, cheesecake also wins in Asia. It is a drier velvety "mouth feel" as opposed to the wet gelatinous one so familiar in all the classic favorites like pig's knuckle or duck tongue or offal or in soup wonton-- but velvety smooth still wins.

But after being puzzled as to why this donut, amidst the battery of donut varieties offered, including ones like Red Bean, did so well I had to ask one of the bosses of the Hong Kong master franchise, a big Aussie bloke. "Why?" I asked. He said: “because it’s got all the shit on top.”

The original glazed donut, which is by leaps and bounds the best seller in the U.S., sold for ten Hong Kong dollars. The New York Cheesecake, and all other special donut varieties sold for twelve Hong Kong dollars. The original glazed has its attractiveness, being such a delectable, simple pleasure. But the New York Cheesecake had an upgraded “cheesecake” frosting, a dusting of fine graham cracker crumble, and a latticework of extra vanilla icing made as if it was a psychedelic tic-tac-toe game. And of course, it was cream filled, cream cheesecake that is.

To customers in Hong Kong this was just a great deal. I don’t think anybody ever really consumed the donuts in great quantities; in fact, most of the purchases were in “dozen” boxes, given as gifts. The original glazed tastes great, but just doesn’t have anywhere near the "show and tell" of the New York Cheesecake. The impact of either treating yourself to one or giving away a box of them was classic Pareto principle: 20% more in cost, 80% more in benefit. It's the deal that matters