History: The history of Tell City Pretzels dates back to 1858, when Casper Gloor settled in the brand-new town of Tell City. He had migrated from Switzerland as a member of the Swiss Colonization Society, which founded Tell City. Gloor, a master baker, became known for pretzels he baked from a secret recipe. When Gloor died in 1912, he passed the recipe to Alex Kessler, who had worked for him for 17 years. Years later, when Kessler himself passed away, he passed the recipe to his two sons.
Current owners: In July 2009, Brad and Sandy Smith purchased the assets of the company and have since owned and operated the pretzel shop with a small team. After inheriting a system in which the former owners delivered the product to individual retail stores, the Smiths began collaborating with distributors to get the products into stores in the Indianapolis, Evansville and Louisville metro areas.
Relocation: In March 2022, the Smiths moved the business to Jasper. That brought them closer to their own home and allowed them to open “the pretzel experience,” where visitors can take scheduled tours to see the baking process and twist their own pretzels. Around that same time, the small business launched the sale of soft pretzels and pretzel buns. Co-owner Sandy Smith said the soft pretzels have been especially popular, landing in businesses such as Bloomington-based Upland Brewing Co. and small local sports venues.
Product details: Tell City Pretzels sells online whole pretzels, pretzel pieces in seven flavors, chocolate- and white chocolate-covered-pretzels, and various gift sets. Pretzel buns and soft pretzels are available wholesale to restaurants and venues.
Fun fact: The bakery can make up to 4,800 pretzels a day.