Dear readers, I have been waiting to be able to do this review.

For months, I have thought about how to go about comparing the doughnuts of Angelina County. There are, of course, an exorbitant amount of shops in Lufkin alone, so I decided that one per city would have to suffice for this review.

With each destination, I grabbed the classics — a glazed, a chocolate and a kolache. I started on one end of the county and worked my way around.

Hudson Donuts was my first stop. The owners of Daily Donuts in Lufkin also operate this beloved shop. The service was all right, but there was a bit of a language barrier that caused a mix-up in the order at first.

The glazed was flaky and fluffy. It had a bit of that fake sugary taste, but it didn’t throw me off too much. It was a nice doughnut.

The chocolate glazed with nuts was pretty good. They must have changed their chocolate since the last time I had them because I remember it tasting awful. Now it is a delicate flavor, and the nuts do a great job to round it all out.

The kolache was very good. Its sausage has a nice savory, nearly spicy taste to it. The breading was great — fluffy and almost sweet. I loved it.

Central Donuts was next up.

The glazed had quite an interesting and delicious flavor with a muted sweetness. Its texture was fluffy and crumbly with a hard glaze outside. Honestly, it was a hit in my book.

The kolache was very small but very good. Like Hudson Donuts, the flavor of the sausage and the consistency/flavor of the breading is good, but I would have appreciated more bang for my buck.

I was most sincerely not a fan of the chocolate bar. The chocolate glaze was good, but the chocolate inside was nasty with a horrible fake flavor. I thought it was neat that you can choose what to fill but bad that I would never like the chocolate.

Fair warning, there’s a $4 minimum charge on credit and debit.

I also stopped by Donut Palace Diboll.

The glazed was dense and lightly sweet. It had a run-of-the-mill flavor and was a good doughnut but nothing to write home about.

The chocolate-filled was far too dense and filled with another batch of nasty, fake chocolate. Does no one know how to use milk?

The kolache was good. Its sausage flavor was good, if a little muted. The breading was good but it lacked the softness of Central and the flavor of Hudson. The size was decent, though.

For Lufkin, I tried Shipley Do-Nuts. I remember them from my youth, but they have definitely changed.

The glazed was warm and fluffy and flaky with my favorite texture so far. It might get a little messy, and I recommend milk to temper the sweetness.

The devil’s food used to be my favorite doughnut of all time. Since coming under new ownership it is not as wonderful, but the chocolate-filled chocolate doughnut is still quite lovely. The chocolate was prime quality, and whatever dryness the dough might warrant was washed away by its smooth and creamy texture.

The kolache is where Shipley really falters. The breading is my main concern. It is dry and hard compared to the rest of the county. The sausage has a good flavor but not as good as most others.

The Donut Spot in Huntington was next up.

The glazed was lackluster. It was good but dry and lacking in flavor. Milk might help it a little, but I’m not even a fan of the texture.

The chocolate-filled was all right. The chocolate isn’t ghastly, I suppose, but it’s no Shipley. The texture is much better on this doughnut, however.

The kolache is the best of this bunch. Its flavor, texture and size are better. A cheese flavor is more prominent here than any other iteration I’d had yet.

DeeDee Donuts in Zavalla was the last shop on my list.

The glazed had intense fluff and a good flavor with more of a subtle sweetness, which I enjoy most. It had a good texture but lacked flake.

The chocolate twist was excellent and scored quite high in my book. Its texture was lovely, and its chocolate flavor was delicious, although it still doesn’t beat Shipley’s. There is a slight cinnamon flavor and a light crunch on the outside that finished the experience off well.

The kolache was on the small side again. It had thicker bread than some, but it still maintained a good balance. I loved the smoky flavor on this kolache. It mixed with the bread’s smooth flavor well. It’s a winner.

Again, a warning that there is a $5 minimum credit and debit charge here.

Upon finishing this trek, my first feelings were ... that’s a lot of doughnut. No, I didn’t do it all in one day, but it was still a lot for two weeks.

It was honestly very hard to rank these shops. They all have their charms, some more than others.

I landed on Central Donuts as my favorite glazed. Their flavor just stuck with me throughout. DeeDee Donuts gave them a run for the money, but in the end, they lacked the flake.

I had to go with Shipley’s devil’s food for the ultimate chocolate doughnut. Again, DeeDee almost won out with the chocolate twist. I loved that hidden cinnamon flavor. But in the end, it’s really about the chocolate. Though the texture of Shipley Do-Nuts has gone downhill in my opinion, their chocolate has remained true. I highly suggest getting one of these bad boys warmed up with a glass of milk one morning.

The winner on the kolache was Hudson Donuts. They have a consistent deliciousness in breading, sausage and flavor that I adore. I also recommend their jalapeño.

DeeDee Donuts takes the crown for best in the county because I would happily eat any of the doughnuts I tried there again. I appreciate consistency and though none of the classics were my ultimate favorites, they were quite close and solid picks.

I enjoyed this roundup, and I think I’ll be doing more like it in the future.

Olive Waldorf is a pseudonym for the food critic of The Lufkin Daily News. Her email is foodcritic@lufkindailynews.com.

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