HOME > Chowhound > New Jersey >
Brewing beer, curing meat, or making cheese? Get great advice

NJ Diner Sausage - I give up!!

pktaske Sep 19, 2012 12:03 PM

Searched the internet for the past two weeks with no luck. I though I had struck gold when I followed up on a recommendation for Thumanns Links...but whe I went to pick up my 10 pound box, it was the small links <frown>.

I'M LOOKING FOR THE BIG ONES served at diners here in Monmouth/Middlesex County and all across the state. As abover, Thumanns is out as is any of the dreck manufactured by Johnsonville.

Please help me. Please. Help. Me.

PS - When is Cindy Sherman leaving us?

  1. Quine Sep 19, 2012 04:42 PM

    If you are a regular at one of the diners, you can try talking to the owner/food buyer, and see if they will order an extra box and sell it to you. That would seem to be the best and easiest way to go.

    1. l
      LEOFONT Sep 19, 2012 05:52 PM

      Any restaurant supply house has them, I get mine from Restaurant Depot in Union, off Rt.22 west
      but they sell to food establishments only

      1 Reply
      1. re: LEOFONT
        debdel Sep 14, 2013 10:26 AM

        who is the distrbuter, or the marketing name ?

      2. p
        pktaske Sep 26, 2012 12:45 PM

        This makes me sad. How on earth does no supermarket carry these??

        3 Replies
        1. re: pktaske
          coll Sep 26, 2012 12:53 PM

          I've heard Pork King recommended. What you're looking for is 2oz links rather than 1 oz, if that helps in your search. Farmland is really good too, but don't know how many places use them in Jersey. I've found the Farmland sausage at the grocery but only in the smaller size. Just go to your local cash and carry and you will be in hog heaven!

          1. re: pktaske
            debdel Sep 14, 2013 10:31 AM

            My thoughts exactly, what a product. Does Shoprite not have enough connections to the wholesalers? Really, I am going to start emailing shop-rite's today, Join me?

            1. re: debdel
              coll Sep 14, 2013 01:59 PM

              There are wholesale suppliers, and there are retail suppliers. And never the twain shall meet. (One other type supplier is to the club stores like Costco and BJs; again, they cannot cross barriers).

          2. l
            lemarais Sep 26, 2012 08:04 PM

            Fairway's own sausage is awesome!


            5 Replies
            1. re: lemarais
              coll Sep 27, 2012 04:11 AM

              ...but we're talking breakfast sausage here, not Italian unfortunately.

              1. re: coll
                lemarais Sep 27, 2012 06:55 AM

                Well, there are about 12 varieties there, only one is called "Italian". What would distinguish "breakfast" sausage other than shapes? Are we looking for little links or patties? (The OP asked for large)

                Most of the commercial brands (Jimmy Dean, ugh!) use fillers and chemicals-- Fairway is made from scratch with all basic ingredients. I love the OP's use of the word "dreck".

                1. re: lemarais
                  coll Sep 27, 2012 08:54 AM

                  Yeah those are all Italian, or I could say Italian American, style. For serving with pasta or parmigiana, or grilling...for dinner basically. They are typically 4 z each. Breakfast sausage usually is flavored with salt pepper and sage, they are very plain. They are sold in 1.5 or 2 oz patties, or 1z or 2z tubes. When someone wants a "large" breakfast sausage, they are looking for the 2 oz. You can get all of these cooked (most popular) or raw. All with the same flavor profile, as opposed to Italian which will have parsely, fennel, broccoli rabe and/or other Italian type additions.

                  Breakfast sausage was always pork, although now there are also turkey versions for healthcare. I recommended a couple of good breakfast sausage brands by name, because you won't find Jimmy Dean or one of those in a diner kitchen. What the OP is looking for has to be procured from a restaurant supply, not Fairway (not that I don't LOVE Fairway myself!)

                  1. re: lemarais
                    equal_Mark Sep 27, 2012 09:10 AM

                    Breakfast or country sausage is usually distinguished by being rather distinctly seasoned with sage.

                    1. re: equal_Mark
                      coll Sep 27, 2012 09:15 AM

                      You're right, I shouldn't have said they are "plain". They have a very distinct flavor. Guess I was thinking of all those wacky Italian flavored sausage, like pesto or roasted pepper. But you won't find anything but sweet or hot in foodservice either, so not a good analogy.

              2. s
                SusieQQ Sep 27, 2012 07:41 AM

                I guess I don't understand what you are looking for. In the grocery stores there are small breakfast sausage links and then larger Italian (various heat strength) ones which we use to make sausage and pepper and onion sandwiches. They fit in small sub rolls. Are there larger ones that those?

                2 Replies
                1. re: SusieQQ
                  pktaske Sep 27, 2012 12:55 PM

                  You from Jersey?

                  They look just like these...:

                  1. re: pktaske
                    SusieQQ Sep 27, 2012 01:47 PM

                    OK, I see now...I wonder if some place like Costco has them? I'll keep an eye out for them. and yes, I'm from Jersey.

                2. l
                  lemarais Sep 27, 2012 09:19 AM

                  OK. I checked, and the highly-acclaimed Swiss Pork Store in Fair Lawn makes their own breakfast sausage from scratch! I checked with a friend who frequents the place, and he has had the breakfast sausage from there, and says that they "hit it out of the park" with those and make eating any comercially-produced types any longer impossible! It also is on the tommyeats "Best Food Retailers" list.


                  2 Replies
                  1. re: lemarais
                    coll Sep 27, 2012 09:44 AM

                    Go for it! Wish I was closer. Just remember to tell them you want 2 oz size!

                    Go for it! Wish I lived closer. Just remember to tell them you want the 2 oz size.

                    1. re: coll
                      pktaske Sep 27, 2012 12:57 PM

                      I'm so there. Will report back!

                  2. d
                    debdel Sep 14, 2013 10:23 AM

                    To funny, I was a waitress for years in Jersey diners and never thought i'd have a problem buying fat link breakfast sausage when I left the business, have been trying for many years to purchase them, sexton was the distributer at the time, but no one seems to want to sell to the private sector, what a product for Laurie of "The Shark Tank" to get a hold of, QVC would blow their phone lines up with sales. New Jersey Diner sausage is know all over the eastern seaboard, my cousins still come in from long island NY to the jersey Diners for the sausage and that's over thirty years!!! so if any one knows a distributer who sells to local stores please, please, please, post

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: debdel
                      Gastronomos Apr 5, 2014 07:22 AM

                      why would your cousins <<"still come in from long island NY to the jersey Diners for the sausage..">>?
                      the diners on Long Island are almost as abundant as in NJ. And serve the same industrial heat and serve food from the same industrial distributors.

                      1. re: Gastronomos
                        coll Apr 5, 2014 07:43 AM

                        For the view?

                        1. re: coll
                          Gastronomos Apr 5, 2014 08:06 AM


                    2. p
                      PuniceaRana Sep 14, 2013 12:02 PM

                      They have the fat breakfast sausages at the meat counter inside the Dutch Farmers Market in Flemington. Not sure of the other locations also carry them, but worth checking out. I know they sometimes sell out, so you may want to call ahead and order it.

                      1. j
                        joestein Sep 16, 2013 06:09 AM

                        Occassionally I buy a breakfast sausage from Premio called Grande.

                        They are the big links like diners serve. They are pretty good. I get them at the Shoprite on Union Hill Rd. & Rt 9.

                        1. l
                          lemarais Sep 16, 2013 07:28 AM

                          pklaske: (OP) Please give us a report here on the sausages you got at Swiss Pork Store in Fair Lawn. Thanks!

                          1. t
                            thebrin Apr 4, 2014 07:38 AM

                            Sexton sausages were served in my high school back in 1974. After graduating, my younger brother used to bring me home a sub whenever they served them. AWESOME!
                            They are without a doubt the BEST sausage ever! Even the sauce was delicious. Later on, I found them being served at a local bar called "The No Place Inn" in Bogota, NJ. They too called me when they were being served for lunch.
                            I tried to research them because I still crave them. Sexton was ultimately purchased by US Food Services, however my repeated emails to them inquiring about the sausages were unanswered. IF ANYONE KNOWS WHERE I CAN PURCHASE THE SEXTON ITALIAN SAUSGE, PLEASE LET ME KNOW

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: thebrin
                              coll Apr 4, 2014 11:28 AM

                              Probably long gone as a US Food product, since they got bought out by SYSCO. But, Sexton/US Food is not a manufacturer so they had it made/packaged by someone else. NJ is such a big meat processing area, whoever it was could still be around. Ask someone who's been in food sales for a good while, any company, it's not a secret usually.

                            2. l
                              LEOFONT Apr 4, 2014 10:46 PM

                              JONES BREAKFAST SAUSAGE has the best taste of them all, and I have tasted them all...(Supermarket)

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: LEOFONT
                                coll Apr 5, 2014 07:02 AM

                                Me too, but I prefer Jimmy Dean or Farmland.

                              2. Gastronomos Apr 5, 2014 07:19 AM

                                although I know what you are referring to and have had them for years in diners, what I see these days is plain, flavorless ones that aren't worth it anymore. and many diners are cutting costs and serving the little links now.

                                they USED to taste like breakfast sausage. Seasoned with sage and black pepper (and salt, of course). Now they are void of any of these. The diners just drop them into the deep fryer and throw them on a plate. But if you find the large breakfast sausage that has breakfast sausage flavor, I would also be interested in the source. I'd ask my local diners, but the ones they serve aren't worth it. as large as they might be.

                                1. d
                                  debdel Apr 5, 2014 07:33 AM

                                  Yeah Looking for years and years and to be sure we are looking for the same sausage the fat linked breakfast sausage not the italian dinner ones! Sexton was the only wholesaler that sold them, that was over 25 years ago when i worked the diners, if anyone knows any owners or are friends with diner owners please ask the name of their disturburtiors name (please excuse the spelling lack of sleep here !!!) thanks for everyones help

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: debdel
                                    coll Apr 5, 2014 07:45 AM

                                    I used to sell a brand named Pork King (and of course it stuck in my mind) it was very popular with my deli customers. They raved about it! Maybe Restaurant Depot could give you some info?

                                  Show Hidden Posts