Dan Wikiera spent seven years working at the famed Waldo Pizza, where he says he developed a deep appreciation for owner Phil Bourne’s dedication to bringing a high-quality, made-on-site product to its customers. Now, Wikiera is launching his own venture with that same philosophy in hopes of filling what he sees as a gap in the current culinary scene.
This spring, Wikiera will open Pretzel Boy’s, a made-from-scratch soft pretzel joint, at 9559 Nall Avenue in the same strip as Papa Murphy’s Pizza. Wikiera had been looking for a food business concept when he came across a fresh pretzel shop on a trip to St. Louis.
“It was kind of a light bulb moment of what we wanted to do,” he said. “I realized that that’s kind of what we’re missing in Kansas City.”
He worked with the proprietors of the Pretzel Boy’s shop in St. Louis and arranged to open a location here in northeast Johnson County. The mainstay will be traditional soft hand-twisted pretzels with a variety of fresh dipping sauces. Pretzel Boy’s will also offer pretzel wrapped sausages, cinnamon glazed pretzels, pretzel nuggets, and custom-shaped pretzels.
Wikiera said he expects much of the business to come from bulk orders.
“We expect to do a lot of business with schools and groups,” he said. “It’s a safe, nut-free snack that you can share. And everything is made from scratch. We make the dough fresh every day and bake new batches all day long.”
Based on the current construction schedule, Wikiera said he hopes to be able to open in late April or early May.