The Big Apple arrival of Canadian fast food chain Tim Hortons was heralded in by free coffee and a people dressed in giant-sized Tim Hortons cup costumes. One reader recounted the scene at 7th Avenue and 50th Street, "Dunkin has hired people to stand outside the store and hand out $1 coupons in retaliation. The donut wars are on, baby! Inside, the store exceeded my expectations from rule-bending shady-operator Riese. Excellent buildout, flatscreen TVs, as good as anything in Gravenhurst or Cobourg or London. Mob scene was very polite (half the customers were Canadian, after all) and there were 20+ staff trying to handle the rush, including a crew of Tim Hortons training managers brought down from Canada." [Speaking of the donut war, check out the Today Show segment about Tim Hortons in NYC after the jump.]
Another reader chimed in, "There were longish lines this morning at the UES location. The coffee was as good as ever but they didn't have maple donuts!" It's also unclear whether some products are being offered (such as the Dutchie) or if they were just sold out.
We visited the Penn Station concourse location and purchased a box of Timbits, TH's donut hole option. We did our homework over the weekend and had some Dunkin Donuts' Munchkins, and, in this extremely unscientific comparison, we say the Timbits are much better: They seemed fresher (very possibly because the store opened with a big fuss this morning) and have a lighter, less dense texture; they also seemed a bit larger than the standard Munchkin. And, unfortunately, they are addictive, probably because sugar is the devil.