Burien’s Historic Danish Bakery Sells Its Last Kringle – Possibly To My Family


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Story & Photos by Scott Schaefer

Burien’s historic Danish Bakery sold its last Kringles, cookies and pastries Saturday (Oct. 15th), and Publisher/Editor Scott Schaefer’s family may have been its final customers.

I say “may” because as we left the charming bakery just after 5:30 p.m. (we bought sugar cookies, raspberry pastries, a cinnamon bow, Kringle, and what we’re certain is the last Kermit the Frog Cupcake ever), owner Lola Pitzner and her crew were already putting the leftovers away, sweeping the floor and wiping the counters down – nobody else had showed up, and the official closing time was 6 p.m.

The Danish Bakery was opened in Olde Burien around 1930 by a Danish baker, then was taken over by Johannes Pitzner, who bought it in 1967.

Mark Pitzner and his Mother Lola continued the family tradition in 1977. It’s been in the Pitzner family for 44 years.

I asked Lola if she was happy to be closing up as she was gathering our goodies. She said, in her distinctive, clipped accent:

“Yes and No. I have felt overwhelmed recently – there’s been too much to do. There are too many emotions. I’m happy to finally get time to rest, but I’m sad to be closing the business. I’ll miss our customers, you know?”

I also asked my son what he thought:

“I’m sad that it’s closing down,” said my 13-year old. “I went there as a kid and got all those delicious treats that weren’t too expensive.”

The Bakery specialized in carefully-baked Scandinavian products including Danish pastry, pumpernickel, and various other breads, cookies, and decorated cakes. They served coffee, espresso drinks, and cold beverages in their small cafe at 825 SW 152nd Street. The establishment also had a fine assortment of hard-to-find imported Scandinavian goods such as imported jams, cheeses, chocolates, lefse and more.

Lola said the new owners had already brought in an espresso machine, and were planning on opening soon. As we learn more about the new bakery and its owners, as well as what they’ll be serving, we’ll do another story.

Here are some pics of the final moments of the bakery:

Lola Pitzner reaches in to her pastry shelf one last time on Saturday, Oct. 15.

We're not certain what the future holds for the bakery's distrinctive signage.

The Danish Bakery crew prepares to shut the doors one last time just after 5:30 p.m. Saturday.

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Comments

5 Responses to “Burien’s Historic Danish Bakery Sells Its Last Kringle – Possibly To My Family”
  1. Carmen Brock Richter says:

    This is so sad, I missed that they were closing or I would have stopped by.
    They made my wedding cake and it was the most wonderful cake.
    We all need to remember to support our local businesses and keep them thriving.

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  2. LeeAnn says:

    Going to miss this bakery so much…my grandson loved their smiley face cookies…and I have to say,I will miss the raspberry cookies. Will never be a bakery that will be as good as them! We will miss you. Lots of memories.

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  3. Rob says:

    So sad the bakery is changing hands, but so glad Lola gets to retire!

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  4. Tonya says:

    I grew up in Olde Burien. The Danish Bakery was always there with it’s delicious treats. The smells from the bakery when I walked by in the summer have left permanent visual and sensory memories that I will always cherish. The wonderful people that worked there always had a smile and a greeting as I came in their door. Thank you to the Pitzner family for your lifetime of love and selling a quality product to all of us that graced your doors. God bless you as you retire! Thans for the memories & amazing treats!

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  5. Jane Reamer says:

    I, too, have lifelong memories of visiting the Danish Bakery , and most recently have enjoyed taking my own kids there to share in what I remember so fondly from my childhood. It is very sad to imagine Burien without the Danish Bakery — definitely marks the end of an era. But Lola has served our community for so many years — she certainly deserves her retirement! I’m excited to discover Olde Burien’s newest business, but that space will always hold memories and Lola and Mark and childhood happiness for me.

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