Schmidt's Sausage Haus
 Columbus, Ohio        Date of Visit  04/02/10   

It has easily been 15 years since I went to Schmidts. So long that I don’t really remember much about it. I know I had my first Non-Guinness dark beer there. It was something called Black Forest Porter and I have never seen it since. I know what they serve but I can’t for the life of me remember what anything tastes like. Since we were looking to celebrate a newly minted master in something or other and finding Trombone Shorty was in town we headed to the Village of Deutschland in Columbus for a taste to remember. (Guaranteed to be better than a Walk to Remember.) German Village has not changed but I suppose places on the National Register of Historical Places tend not to. We bounced our way through the brick streets for an early dinner (4:30), hoping to beat the rush. Way wrong. People are hanging out around the place like zombies outside of a building containing the last remaining human. (No brains on the actual menu) .



Everyone is Deutsch at Schmidt's

First off…a confession. We never purposefully create a problem to see how the staff responds. If I was working for the company, sure. We just try to do the best we can on a single visit, whatever happens. On this occasion we did create a problem We lied. Bad us. Told there would be an hour wait (AT 4:30!) they asked us to let them know when everyone showed up they might be able to get us in quicker.  Knowing the rest of us were to arrive soon, even though they have a whole family to wrangle, we shopped at the fudge haus…(yum) and went back to put our name in. They said it would be about 30 minutes…should be perfect. Schmidts was early and they were late so Steph got some guff from the manager. This might be miserable all the way through. Our server had a very different attitude. She was gracious and took excellent care of us through the meal. Four diamonds. The place is packed and everyone is packing themselves with German fare.


Waiting for a Table; Check Out the Fudge Haus

Here's Why

Ham Sandwich on a Great Pretzel Roll

The Hoffbrau Schnitzel


The younger among us took advantage of the deal on the autobahn (the buffet) and we ordered a ham sandwich, a bahama mama sandwich, the sausage sampler, and the hoffbrau schnitzel. Our youths did well at the buffet and we considered stealing some of the mac and cheese as it looked delicious…but we were already in das hund haus.

The ham sandwich came on a pretzel bun and was better than it should have been. The ham had a bright salty flavor and the pretzel bun was perfect. The sausage sandwich with the spicy bahama mama is really the reason people grind a variety of stuff and squeeze it into a casing. The four house sausages are really nice…a bahama mama, a mild mama, a knockwurst, and a bratwurst. Everyone seems to have their own personal favorite, meaning they are all good and folks just have different preferences. The mamas have a subtle but present spice to them, one more than the other. The knockwurst has an unmistakable garlic punch which predominates a host of other flavors. And my long time favorite the brat, typically multiple meats and seasonings which result in that grayish but delicious link. You should definitely do the sampler or the autobahn to settle on which charcuterie you would most like to feast on. The pounded pork cutlets were crispy with a coating of mushroom gravy which I found tasty.

The Bahama Mama Sandwich

The House-Mades and Etheral German Potato Salad

My favorite items of the day however were the sides. I would be ecstatic to have regular access to the the sides alone. The applesauce is chunky and lightly flavored with the typical spices. The thin and crispy potato pancakes have flavors I have only found in the homes of Hebrew friends. The sauerkraut has a sharp bite and has a warm smoky addition of bacony delish. The German potato salad. Oh dear…the tater eating Irish in me is jealous of this preparation. Warm and with a healthy dash of bacon and vinegar instead of mayo this lumpy mess is likely the best thing I have chewed at Schmidts. Stupendous!

Lastly we all split two of their ridiculous cream puffs. In a nod to my grandma…whom everyone referred to as CPGma (Cream Puff Grandma) due to her love of the treat…they are not my favorite. For me, the best are filled with a stirred custard instead of a whipped cream base. If my favorites were whipped they might very well be at Schmidts. We tried the vanilla…MMMmmmmm, and the peanut butter fudge which was also exceptional. Schmidt's turned out to  be out of the ordinary but not perfect…a great endorsement. Perhaps the Jegunda said it best…”When I am at Schmidt’s I don’t feel like I am in Columbus at all.” Teleportation on a plate. Dankeshöen.

Vanilla Cream Puff

Peanut Butter Fudge



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