An institution has been lost in my neighborhood. The storefront that once held Sausage King is now up for rent following the passing of Fred Spenner.
I only spoke to Mr. Spenner only a few times. He always helped me choose the right meat for the recipe. Was I making paella? I needed linguica. And his liverwurst was always top notch according to Paul. And when I needed spatzel, I knew that Sausage King always had a few boxes on their shelves. But it was the Old World decor that in drew me in.
There was nothing modern about this operation. Everything from the vintage cash register to the way he cured the meats was how Mr. Spenner always did it (he opened his store nearly 50 years ago). And there was the smell when you walked through the door— the seductive smell of sausages being cured. They hung on the wall, from the ceiling and every nook and cranny in that shop.
I regret that it took me so long to write about Sausage King (my photos are nearly three years old). In a neighborhood with a hairdresser, florist, coffee shop or Thai/sushi/fusion joint popping up every few months, Sausage King was the only institution that remained unchanged for nearly half a century. I always thought Sausage King would be around forever.
So rest in peace, Herr Sausage King. You are irreplaceable.