Three Brothers Bakery is sorely missed around my house. The holidays aren't the same without the gingerbread men and the gooey poppyseed strudel. And I haven't had a loaf of caraway rye that came close to theirs since they closed. Three Brothers had three locations up until a couple of years ago. But due to a weird conspiracy of circumstances all three are shut now.
The Sugar Land location went out of business in July 2006 after 20 years thanks to the diversion of traffic during highway construction. The River Oaks shopping center location was closed in May 2007 when the center was scheduled for demolition. Hurricane Ike took out the main location and production bakery on South Braeswood.
I stopped by the storm-damaged South Braeswood site and peered in the windows to see what was going on. The employees were having a Christmas party in the front room of the ruined building. Owner Robert Jucker opened the door and filled me in on the reconstruction plan. Orginally, he hoped to be open by December or January, but that date has been pushed back. Maybe the South Braeswood bakery will be open again in February, Jucker now estimates.
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Robert Jucker isn't going anywhere. "I am a fifth generation baker," he told me. "My father and all three of the brothers were concentration camp survivors. My dad had a bakery in Germany. So I'm an S.O.B.-- a son of a brother." The original three brothers are all deceased now. Jucker is the last family member in the business. He gave me a tour of the ruins and we talked about his Hobart mixers and bakery ovens for awhile. Before I left, I asked if there will be other Three Brothers locations again some day.
"Let me get this one open first," Jucker said.