Oktoberfest food sources
It's getting to be that time of year and I'm looking for a couple of things here locally. First, bratwurst. Yes, I know of Kramarczuk's in Northeast, but can anyone point to another worthy brat? I'm looking for something more like a German brat - fresh (not smoked) preferred, rather than the Northern WI / MN type of brat that's mixed with everything from jalapenos to apples. If there's a source for both pork casing (typical size of brat) and lamb casing (a bit larger than a breakfast sausage), that would be awesome.
Question #2 - is there a German bakery that sells pretzels? The big softer German style pretzel?
The uncooked (fresh) brats @ Kramarczuk's & Sentyrz are just as good...fine grind...deftly seasoned...great fresh brats.
Surdyk's makes and sells the giant bready German-style pretzels and has them in their case from time to time. I am sure if you called them, they could make a big fresh batch for you...
patisserie 46 sometimes has and probably would make a batch of pretzels for you.
Everett's has hog casings for about $35 a hank, don't know how much you need but I think they will break a package, and lamb were a bit more expensive, but they usually are on hand, just ask the butcher...
You didn't ask about it, but are you interested in any strudels for your event?
There is a place that makes savory and sweet strudels. Like apple strudel. And many others.
They have been selling them at some of the farmers markets. Ruhlands Strudelhaus.
Here's their information: http://www.thestrudelhaus.com/
I have been buying Kramarczuk brats (fresh brats) for probably 20 years by now. Guests have never been disappointed. They are bit spendy, but worth it..
I purchased hog casings at Everetts in South Minneapolis a few years ago. I think I was charged only a couple of bucks for enough casing to stuff 5lbs of sausage.
For pretzels, maybe you could just make your own? The last issue of Fine Cooking has an article on making Bavarian style pretzels. You could probably par bake them and finish to order.
For brats, the 2 best I've had are Everett's and the Surly brats at Oxendale Market on 34th Ave in South Minneapolis. Very different from each other.
Everett's is very fine texture, with a bit more nutmeg, mace, ginger-ish type spicing. Great flavor. Oxendale's Surly brats are made with...you guessed it, Surly beer. Coarser texture (more like the typical American version of the brat, like a WI brat). Different flavoring, still excellent, just very different flavor profile that Everett's.