Grebe’s VP Colton Grebe spent some time with Kristine Kierzek at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel to talk about Grebe’s history in Milwaukee and about what it’s like to be the fourth generation running the family business.
Colton Grebe’s first job was in his family’s bakery, stocking rolls on Packers Sundays. He eats ham and rolls just about every day, and he can’t live without crullers.
Since 1937, Grebe’s Bakery has been a staple in Milwaukee, serving crullers, doughnuts, baked goods and the ever-popular ham and rolls. Since 1957, they’ve been in the same space at 5132 W. Lincoln Ave. Colton, 29, is the vice president and oversees baking, and his brother, Brandon, is the president. They are the fourth generation running the family business, which they learned from their father and grandfather, who made their mark by getting Grebe’s into convenience stores, gas stations and groceries, including Speedway, Sendik’s, Sentry and Woodman’s.
Business has shifted, with production currently down about 50%, and they’re down to 77 employees from the typical 140. Current hours are 5 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Sunday. Walk-ins welcome, and they offer curbside pickup, plus delivery available through UberEats.
Call (414) 543-7000 or go to www.grebesbakery.com/
Question: How has the baking business evolved since you started?
Answer: We always say we are still here because we never went the frozen route. We have our own distribution, we have all our own trucks.
There are also some other fascinating Grebe facts. My grandpa was the first person to get doughnuts in gas stations. We are the first people in the country to provide doughnuts to gas stations and convenience stores.
Read the rest of the interview on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel website.