Even on a slow morning in the town known as Little Norway on the Fjord, everything at Sluys Bakery
moves at high speed.
“In production, it is very fast paced,” said Dan Sluys who moves around like a dancer in the production area. “I liken it to a martial artist, that every move has to do something because there's so much to make every single day .”
Production starts at midnight. Doors open before sunrise even on the longest day of the year.
“Eight hours goes by real quick,” said Sluys whose dad bought the bakery when Dan was in third grade.
“One of the things the Norwegians were telling my dad was you're not going to make it here because you’re not Norwegian and he said ‘I'll make it here because I'm Dutch’.”
Fifty years later, Sluys is still selling customers their daily bread or as they say in Poulsbo: "Giv Os Jdag Vort Daglige Brod".
In fact, it was Dan's dad who, in 1974, came up with one of our state's most famous recipes
“He was home reading the bible and in Ezekiel he read a scripture about ‘taking the different grains’ so he took the grains and he wrote them out on a napkin, brought them down to the bakery, and he was like ‘Lets make a loaf out of bread out of this!’ and we did.”
The result: Poulsbo Bread.
Even with their own slicing machine, Sluys couldn't keep up with demand so they patented the recipe and sold it to Seattle bread companies like Franz.
“I think it was 1988 that they sold 20 million loaves across the United States,” said Sluys.
But times have changed. Today, Sluys is the only place to get Poulsbo Bread made from scratch. They also offer Norwegian Black Bread, with its array of odd but tasty ingredients including coffee and chocolate.
Sluys isn't so forthcoming about what goes into one of his signature treats, Viking Cups. Nobody is.
“Every employee that is employed here they sign a waiver that they can not give out that information so it is a legal binding contract,” said Sluys.
The Doughboys. The Smily Face Cookies.The Swedish Almond Pastries. Sluys should know better than anyone the sweet smell of success, but he hasn't smelled a thing in thirty years.
Evening is your guide to Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. Watch it weeknights at 7:30 on KING-TV Ch. 5 or streaming live on KING5.com. Connect with Evening via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Email.