Melissa Eddy in the NYT:

On Sunday mornings, the line at the backdoor of Fritz Trefzger’s bakery snakes through the courtyard as customers wait for their chance to step into the inner sanctum of his kitchen.

Once there, they can pick his small, oblong white bread rolls, and their darker, seeded cousins, fresh off the oven racks. Just as important for the master baker, they can also watch him twist a rich, brown-crusted pretzel to perfection — thick in the lower belly, with arms thin enough to drape neatly on either side — with a few deft turns of his wrist.

That was the point, he said, of opening his kitchen to the public, something not normally done at traditional German bakeries. The idea was not only to attract customers, but also to send a message to anyone who might be tempted to pick up their Sunday rolls at the local supermarket, which have made the traditional German bakery an endangered species.

“I wanted them to see for themselves, up close, what we do,” said Mr. Trefzger, 58, as he sat in the cafe attached to the bakery that he took over from his father in 1989. “It is important that people learn to appreciate the traditional craft of baking bread.”