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Monday 30 May 2011

German Charcuterie ( Metzgerei )

On my recent trip to Germany where I was teaching charcuterie, I was offered hospitality unlike I have ever received before. (I think I learnt more than I actually taught on this trip!)

It started here and near to Hameln in Niedersachsen, where I met pig farmer Achim Kaiser and his family and friends. I was treated like a family member having been told to park my trusty camper in the farm yard for the night (of which you can just see in the background), I was treated to a BBQ in my honour along with sharing much beer and several bottles of schnapps. Not only that, I was informed I was to sleep in the house overnight as I would be more comfortable than in my camper, with all the schnapps I was given I'm not sure it would have mattered.

Food and it's production was the topic of conversation for most of the time and here is Achim giving me a tour of his cellar, to which was the size of a large apartment. In it was a room dedicated to the many bottles of wine which the family had acquired over many years, also two rooms of home canning. All kinds of vegetables, fruits and meats of every description, many of which were given to me the following morning on my departure.

I visited the local markets at every opportunity to sample the many meats being sold before buying what I enjoyed most.

The Germans don't seem to boast about their food like other continentals, they just get on with making the highest quality they can with a quite like efficiency.

As you expect with this country, it offers a variation of cold meats, but it is the variation and high quality that surpass our neighbours.

It is no wonder Germany is the sausage capital of the world, with all it has to offer on this subject.

At Hameln market I met Manuella a team member of Fritsch a small company whom are specialists in German charcuterie, she saw that I had an interest in her meats and invited me to see how they were made. She without any hesitation called her boss and arranged that I visit that very same day. Manuella passed me the information I needed to find the address and I was on my way.

On arrival at Fritsch the Wurstgrosshandel, I was welcomed by Jens Fritsch the owner who promptly kitted me out in disposable overalls, shoes and hair net.

Jens very proudly gave me a quick tour of his premises and explained how some of his products were developed. Here a member of his staff fills a hopper with meat ready for mincing.

Jens with some of his Mettwurst ready for smoking.

Here we have some of the magnificent Black Forest Ham which has been cold smoked.

More salami and again Jens with some freshly cooked bratwurst ready for packing.

I can't begin to tell you about the generosity shown to me during my two week stay in Germany in particular to Achim Kaiser and Jens Fritsch for allowing me to indulge in my passion for great meat.

Auf Wiedersehen


  1. Sounds like you had a fantastic time. As they say here, You must have been in hog heaven! Did you go through the Chunnel?

  2. Looks like this was amazing... wow!!

  3. Great Story Marc... let me know if you need a traveling companion next time :)