The pretzel isn’t a new thing by any means, but it certainly has started making more appearances throughout L.A., often in the shape of a bun, a re-worked crust, or a new thing to dip into a delicious sauce. We’ve scoured this great city in search of pretzels and its many iterations and below are some favorites, regardless of form.
ADDED: Gemini Bakehouse, Little Flower Candy Co., Shappy Pretzel Co., West Coast Pretzels
REMOVED: Brü Haus (Closed), Cooks County (Closed), Got Kosher? (Closed), Tom Bergin’s (Closed)
Establishments appear in alphabetical order instead of in order of preference.
Alpine Village is, by far, the kitschiest location on this round-up. Its proximity to the 110 freeway and Torrance doesn’t seem like it would lend itself to a little German village oasis, but that it does. There’s an inn, shops, a restaurant, and a market. The market is packed with products you would find in Deutschland; the deli counter has items such as Fleischsalat, Currywurst, and Bratwurst; the breads are grainy and hearty; and the mustard selection is expansive. -TM
Annie Miler tends to be a traditionalist at her Century City café, and that’s the case with her pretzels. However, it’s also possible to order an over the top Pretzel Paroxysm ($15.95) during Grilled Cheese Month, which she describes as “a twisted tumult of turkey, white cheddar, bacon and tomato relish grilled on a traditional pretzel.”[/caption] -TM
Coffee Tomo is right off Sawtelle Boulevard on Mississippi Avenue, among all of the Japanese restaurants and shops. The café is open and bright though the decorations try to make it feel a little warmer (i.e. less stark) with the coffee bean sacks hanging on a wall and some shelving and large wooden tables made of dark wood. Coffee Tomo has a variety of pretzels: sweet potato cheese, regular, red bean cheese, jalapeño cheese, and cinnamon sugar. The pretzel dough sits for about a day then takes only 5-6 minutes to prepare once ordered. -TM
4. Congregation Ale House, Long Beach – Fresh Baked Pub Pretzel
Congregation Ale House started on the Downtown Long Beach Promenade and has an ample selection of beer and sausages. The restaurant has the attitude of a pub that is both modernized and retrospective and is constantly packed; ordering happens at the front and then it’s off to fight for a place to sit amongst the indoor tables, outdoor seating and bar chairs. Congregation also operates Azusa, Pasadena, and Santa Ana chapters. -TM
Hannah Smith and husband Conor debuted their Silver Lake bakery in 2021 after operating Gemini Bakehouse from their La Crescenta home. Their versatile repertoire includes a surprisingly light Pretzel ($5) with chewy coat and sea salt dusting. Pretzels are also available coated in a cheddar and Parmesan cheese blend. -JL
Hudson House is the kind of place you wish was in your neighborhood, or if you live in Redondo Beach, it actually is in your neighborhood. It’s right on PCH and pays homage to the old days of beach living with a great black and white photo on the back wall. The menu has variety and is not overpriced; the bar has a wonderful selection of beers and cocktails and the happy hour is killer. In 2021, Kate Failor and Jessica Ibarra took over for original owners Brooke Williamson and Nick Roberts, who named Hudson House for their son.
Hudson House has graced their menu with two pretzel sandwiches – the pretzel burger and a spicy pulled pork sandwich on a pretzel croissant. The pork sandwich, while delicious, was less pretzel-y: the croissant is made from pretzel dough, and while it has the wonderful buttery and flaky aspects you love in a croissant, it misses the pretzel aspects. However, the winner here (in terms of pretzels) is the pretzel burger. The burger itself and all of its accoutrements – grilled onions, bacon, Jarlsberg cheese and arugula – are excellent, but Röckenwagner’s pretzel bun really hits its mark. The bun is thick yet light, and lightly salty. -TM