To step into Reuter’s Bakery is to step right into tradition. In 1927, Leo Reuter and Hanna Holzrichter married and, instead of spending their money on a honeymoon and a home, they instead opened Reuter’s Bakery together. Both took the utmost care and pride in their risky venture because just seven years prior, Leo had just arrived off the boat with only a single suitcase in his hand. Their love, hard work, and determination for not only their bakery, but was recognized for their devout support of their surrounding community as well. Their appreciation for their community was returned in kind, propelling the business to a point where 72 employees were working at the bakery, making it the largest retail bakery in Chicago.
Now, 80 years later, Richard and Erin Eberle are working tirelessly to make sure that tradition stays true here at Reuter’s. Richard’s father, Richard Sr., himself a baker, bought his first Christmas cookies from Reuter’s Bakery. About eight years later, Richard Sr. would buy the business and run it successfully for 33 years. Richard Sr. is elated that his son had decided to take over the business in 2000. Keeping it in the family was important to him, as he did not want to see the hard work he and his wife put into it falter in the hands of another. And it has not.
Richard Jr. and his wife, Erin, now guide the business as successfully as Richard’s father. Though years have passed, generations have moved on and times have changed, Richard and Erin are pleased to see that some things can stay the same. Reuter’s Bakery is still a point of pride in the community, with an older generation remembering what Reuter’s has always meant to them and a newer generation ready to create their own delicious memories as they taste the exquisiteness of Reuter’s for the very first time. The care that the Eberle family took in ensuring that Reuter’s stayed within the family parallels the love and commitment they put forth into the bakery every single day. To them, as to the generations of owners before them, these baked delicacies should not be rolling off of an automated assembly line and dumped into your grocery bag. To Richard and Erin, it should be created. It should be cared for. It should be watched over until it’s placed in your hands. And at the end of the day, it should be enjoyed, from their family to yours. That was the ideal of Leo Reuter. That was the ideal of Richard Sr., and that is the ideal of Richard Jr. and Erin.
And don’t worry. Richard Sr., although retired, is still coming to the bakery, smiling as he sees the business is left in loving hands.