Jimmy Steal

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October is Bratwurst season! From Fall Festivals to Oktoberfests, Gameday Tailgating to Backyard Grilling, brats are on the menu!

Super Bowl XLV

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First off, what is a Bratwurst, and how many different kinds are there?

Interestingly, according to Wikipedia, “Bratwurst”  is a type of German sausage made from pork or, less commonly, beef or veal. The name is derived  from brät-, finely chopped meat, and Wurst, sausage. Although in modern German it is often associated with the verb braten, to pan fry or roast.  Wikipedia goes on to say that recipes for the sausage vary by region and even locality. Some sources list over 40 different varieties of German bratwurst! 

Germany Marks Unity Day

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Brats in the USA.

Here in the good ‘ol US of A, Bratwurst processing and consumption started in the mid west, where many German immigrants settled in the early part of the 20th century. Furthermore, bratwurst was popularized in the 1920’s in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. There, local German butchers would take daily orders for brats from the growing population. Because of the high fat content in the sausages, coupled with a lack of good refrigeration, bratwurst was made to be consumed the same day. So they were casing hundreds of sausages daily. Legend has it that introduced bratwursts to Major League Baseball in 1954, when he began selling them in Milwaukee County Stadium during Braves games. The story goes that Brooklyn Dodger, and future Hall Of Famer Duke Snider loved them so much he took a case back home to New York, and bratwurst consumption in America really took off!

St Louis Cardinals v Milwaukee Brewers - Game One

MILWAUKEE, WI – OCTOBER 09: The Chorizo #5 leads the Brat #1 during the Sausage Race in between innings of Game one of the National League Championship Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on October 9, 2011 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)


Some fun Bratwurst facts.

American Family Field, the home of the Brewers, actually sells more bratwurst during the season than hot dogs. Meanwhile, every Memorial Day Madison, Wisconsin holds their annual “Brat Fest”, billed as the world’s largest bratwurst festival. However, the town of Bucyrus, Ohio bills itself as the “Bratwurst Capital Of America”, has held it’s annual Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival annually since 1967.

2013 Gruene Woche Agricultural Trade Fair

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You might not find a Bratwurst Festival anytime soon in New Jersey. Although that doesn’t mean you can’t sink your teeth into some hot brats locally this Fall!

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  • The Forked River German Butcher 109 Lacey Road Forked River

    A full service German Butcher with lunch specials and your daily dose of Bratwurst, Cheddar Wurst, and even Knockwurst, which is like a big fat hotdog. Meanwhile you might find their successful food truck at a festival or two this fall. See there menu here https://order.toasttab.com/online/german-butcher


  • Best Of The Wurst German Kitchen 626 Harrison Street Riverside

    Best Of The Wurst not only has a cool name, they have excellent scratch made German dishes, highlighted by their Wurst Platter. The choice of two bratwurst, knackwurst, wurstchen, or kielbasa, served with sauerkraut and a German salad for just 15 bucks!

    meat case


  • Schmalz's European Provisions 66 Fadem Road Springfield

    This European Provisions store has been providing bratwurst and other European Cuisine to the area since 1972. You can grab a pound of brats for your next bbq for around 8 bucks.

  • Swiss Pork Store Of Fair Lawn 24-10 Fair Lawn Ave, Fair Lawn

    Like their sign says “We’re Not Just Pork”. You can grab all of your meats here, but just look at those brats!

  • Alpine Meats and Deli 57 Route 94 Blairstown

    My Aunt and Uncle used to live out in Blairstown when I was a kid. I remember visiting this place as a kid and loving their homemade German sausage jerky. Little did I know they had every kind of wurst under the sun! https://alpinemeatsanddeli.com/gallery


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