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German or Sausage in the city

chowhund Jun 22, 2006 11:55 AM

I have company of German heritage coming to town and am looking for good German food or local sausage house in the area to make up for an unfortunate Oktoberfest experience on their last visit.

I'm willing to drive for great food so we aren't limited to the city. All suggestions appreciated...TIA

  1. h
    Hummy Jun 22, 2006 12:06 PM

    Not in San Francisco, but there's Speisekammer in Alameda. I really enjoyed the food and the people I went with seemed to as well. They also have music some nights. Thanks for the reminder -- I'll have to head back there again soon.

    Link: http://www.speisekammer.com/

    1 Reply
    1. re: Hummy
      Gerard Jul 21, 2006 06:38 AM

      I'm late to the party. But I just ate at Speisekammer. Overall, I enjoyed it. A little expensive. Two meals, two beers for $63. I liked my friend's sausage better than my wienerschnitzel.


    2. t
      Tamara Jun 22, 2006 12:48 PM

      We would recommend Suppenkuche on Hayes in the city. Nice atmosphere, long wooden tables that may seat multiple parties, good-enough food and beer.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Tamara
        coolbean98 Aug 25, 2006 05:42 PM

        I second Suppenkuche if you're on that side of the Bay. The menus of Speisekammer and Suppenkuche are almost identical (except for quark, which is a big deal to some people). Suppenkuche has more space and rarely any waiting time, though, if you are bringing a big party.

        I do like Walzwerk, though, as do my Berliner friends (one of whom has a photo on the wall from the communist days), for a totally different dining experience.

        1. re: coolbean98
          Robert Lauriston Aug 25, 2006 05:49 PM

          Speisekammer also has a much better wine list.



      2. d
        dishydude Jun 22, 2006 03:40 PM

        Walzwerk! South VanNess near 16th. Easy parking, cool Mission vibe, hodge podge tables and chairs, fun German staff. The Jager Schnitzel-sp? is so good and around $12, Great beer selection.

        1 Reply
        1. re: dishydude
          Robert Lauriston Jun 29, 2006 04:41 PM

          Walzwerk is fun and the food's fine for the price but note that it's a very young crowd. When we went there I don't think anyone else was over 27. Also, they appear to have gotten their furniture by dumpster diving, so some of it's uncomfortable.

        2. d
          Dr. Biggles Jun 23, 2006 12:47 PM

          Dittmer's Wurst-Haus in Mt. View is a destination German situation. While they don't cook their sausages to eat there, it's one of the most amazing things I've ever witnessed. Dittmer smokes and cures everything from bacon, hams, turkey, sausages and salami. Their meat counter must be 50 feet long and filled to the brim with carefully laden rows of all thing German. And behind you are shelves filled with fine German mustards and related. The staff are more than helpful and happy and I noticed that many are placing their meat orders in German. And you know what? The prices are about half of what you would think. I got enough sausage and bacon to feed a family of 4 for 6 days for 45 dollars. His bacon is less than 3 dollars a pound a very clean and smooth cure/smoke. I noticed he's got prime cuts of beef for 14 dollars a pound in steak form, didn't stop to see. I drive from the East Bay to Dittmer's without a thought, I love it there.


          1. rworange Jun 26, 2006 07:49 PM

            It isn't German but Polish, Chopin Cafe in Walnut Creek.

            They have something called cutlet which is the best type of weinersnitzel dish I've ever had, elegant and not heavey. So it is Eastern European and not particularily German.

            IIRC, there might be another German restaurant in that area. If no one else replies, I'll search around. Unfortunately you asked the question just as the new software was installed, so the post might not get the replies it normally deserves.

            However there is a great new search engine now so you might give that a try if you don't get additional replies.

            Where was the unfortunate Octoberfest experience? What happened?

            1. n
              NoeMan Jun 26, 2006 10:36 PM

              It's funny. When we have relatives from Europe come over, the last thing they want is their own food/drink. Years ago we'd take the Irish to Irish pubs and the French to French retaurants, only to have them confide that they get the real thing all the time and wanted a non-home experience here.

              2 Replies
              1. re: NoeMan
                larochelle Jun 26, 2006 11:02 PM

                OP said "German heritage" not German.

                One section of my family is of German heritage and lives in an area of Texas chockfull of German settler towns so they have plenty of access to German-Texas food and sausages. If they came to visit, I doubt they would ask about German food, but relatives who have moved away could easily want to chowdown on a cuisine they miss and thus would ask about German cuisine in the Bay Area.

                1. re: larochelle
                  NoeMan Jun 26, 2006 11:14 PM

                  Oops. Sorry didn't catch the nuance.

              2. l
                Louise Jun 27, 2006 02:59 AM

                There's a German-style deli in El Cerrito Plaza, the south edge. I forgot what it's called, however it has many yummy looking specialties that I must forgo now that I am on Weight Watchers.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Louise
                  J T Jun 27, 2006 11:42 PM

                  The Junket.

                  1. re: Louise
                    rworange Jun 29, 2006 12:31 PM

                    The Junket is fine for El Cerrito, but it is hardly any place I would take these people. It just pretty much sells sandwiches.

                    Here's a link to their menu on the website


                    Here's my post about it


                  2. k
                    Kuisine Jun 27, 2006 10:38 PM

                    I think there was a similar conversation in March of this year... I only found a small thread about it, but I think there was a larger one too.

                    Anyhow, gleaned from that thread were two more suggestions:



                    Kathy/Kuisine (formerly KathySK)

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Kuisine
                      ChowFun_derek Aug 25, 2006 04:26 PM

                      I enjoyed both of these places..Schnitzelhaus had German speaking servers, and the owner is a hoot!
                      Walzwerk is replete with paraphenalia from Communist East Germany.

                    2. K K Jun 27, 2006 10:44 PM

                      I remember a fantastic dinner at Schroeders over a year ago, where I called ahead to ask the owner to ensure that Schweine Hoxe (spelling) aka German Pigs Knuckles was offered as a special that night. Granted the chef and owners are not from Germany after the business got sold a while back, but the food quality was still great.

                      Had a sip of dad's Pilsner or was it some other type of beer on tap and loved it.

                      For what it is worth, one of the butchers at Dittmers (who speaks German himself, didn't quite catch his name) and I had a conversation one time and he mentioned he grew up eating at Schroeders as well.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: K K
                        ggchickapee Jun 30, 2006 12:43 AM

                        I second Schroeder's. The food isn't the best, but it is more authentically German (in terms of both conception and quality) than Suppenkuche. The sausage platter -- yum! And they have some very old-world stuff you don't find very often, like oxtails, braised ham hock, roasted goose.

                        But the best part is the crazy Bavarian beer hall atmosphere -- complete with deer heads and beer steins lining the walls. Having spent childhood Saturday mornings learning German at the German-American Home in Omaha, I feel right at home at Schroeder's.

                        We take our Bavarian relatives whenever they visit. Usually for lunch, sometimes for dinner. Yes, they get better food back home, but since Bavarians think that anything Bavarian is better than anything that is not Bavarian, they always like going there.

                        1. re: ggchickapee
                          Robert Lauriston Aug 25, 2006 03:41 PM

                          Looks like Schroeder's is making an effort to update its food. One of last night's specials: potato pancake topped with ahi tuna tartare.

                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                            chaddict Aug 25, 2006 04:31 PM

                            OK, that just sounds soooo wrong!

                          2. re: ggchickapee
                            Joan Kureczka Aug 25, 2006 07:09 PM

                            Sorry but I quite disagree about Suppenkuche not being authentically German. It is authentically Bavarian to be specific, and we've been to places in Munich over the past 4 years of visits with very similar menus and cooking style/quality. There are distinct variations in German cooking styles depending on the area of the country, which is somewhat illustrated by the differences between Suppenkuche and Walzwerk.

                        2. J T Jun 29, 2006 04:49 PM

                          There's a small place called D.J.'s Bistro in Concord. It's a Czech-German resto. The food and the beer there is pretty good.


                          1. ChowFun_derek Aug 25, 2006 05:10 PM

                            Yesterdays Chron. had a review of "SCHNITZELHAUS" great timing...
                            here's the link!!!


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