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Best of Olympia 2019: Wagner's European Bakery & Cafe

Writer's pick: Best Secret

Wagner’s cinnamon bread is available by the loaf or served for breakfast in the café. (Credit: Marguerite Cleveland)

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My favorite thing about Olympia is the cinnamon bread at Wagner's European Bakery & Café. It's their signature bakery item and you can see why. Unlike most cinnamon bread which is thickly rolled with just a thin swirl of cinnamon, Wagner's version is thinly rolled creating a swirl that is layers upon layers of delectable cinnamon goodness. It is so rich and decadent.

I learned about the cinnamon bread from my friend, and local expert, Kim Early. "My grandmother would always serve the bread at family gatherings. My cousins and I grew up eating it and loved it. Now my cousins, who live in California, always make a special trip to Wagner's when they visit to bring some home," said Early.

The bread is so good it is served as a breakfast item in the café. Two slices are served toasted and slathered with butter, plus a cup of fruit. This is my favorite way to eat it. My family loves it made into French toast.

The bakery was founded in 1957 by Rudy Wagner, and has the largest variety of baked goods and treats in the Puget Sound area. In addition to their downtown Olympia location, you can also visit their booth at the Olympia Farmers Market.

Wagner's cinnamon bread is one of those local secrets you need someone to tell you about. For a Steilacoom resident, it is well worth the drive to Olympia to purchase a loaf or two. In my case, I purchased two -- one to share with Kim. 

WAGNER'S EUROPEAN BAKERY & CAFÉ, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday-Friday; 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday; 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sunday, 1013 Capitol Way S., Olympia, 360.357.7268,

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