Paczki Day, also known as Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras, is just around the corner on March 1. Paczki, prounced “puhnch-kee,” is a Polish donut filled with fruit or cream filling – and is a local favorite in Milwaukee. The day before the beginning of the Catholic season of Lent, Paczki Day is the last chance for those who choose to indulge in their favorite fried pastry before the 40-day time of fasting leading to Easter.
This year, bakeries and organizations around Milwaukee are doing their best to get paczki into as many hands as possible, offering pre-orders to accommodate the high seasonal demand for the sweet treat. National Bakery & Deli owner, Bryant Krauss, said that the day is especially important to his company, as they are located in a predominately Polish area on the South Side of Milwaukee.
“Our roots stem from our authentic neighborhood feel, traditional scratch baking, and festive atmosphere – all which have contributed to our locally famous paczki,” Krauss says.
National Bakery and Deli is not stopping at a paczki presale – they’re going all out. On March 1, the bakery will be hosting a Paczki Day celebration complete with King Cake and T-shirts available for purchase.
“We all take so much pride in this day and try to make it a positive experience for everyone – our customers, community and staff. It’s incredibly unique,” Krauss says.
The celebrations will take place March 1 from 6 a.m.-3 p.m. at each of National Bakery and Deli’s three locations: 3200 S. 16th Street, 13820 W. Greenfield Ave. in Brookfield, and 5637 Broad Street in Greendale.
Here are some other bakeries around the Milwaukee area that are holding paczki presales:
- Aggie’s Bakery: 7328 W. Greenfield Ave., 414-482-1288
- The Bake Sale: 6923 W. Becher St., West Allis, 414-543-4230
- The Polish Center of Wisconsin: 6941 S. 68th St., Franklin, 414-529-2140
- Lakeside Bakery: 1100 E. Oklahoma Ave., 414-486-7747