Friday, July 25, 2008

The Texas Sausage Trail - Maeker's, Shiner

I was tipped to Maeker’s by Houston food explorer Jay Francis, who is from Shiner originally. I was headed out for barbecue at Novosad’s in Hallettsville and to visit Patek’s Shiner Smokehouse but was glad to include another stop on the tour. It’s a real treasure and very easy to miss. On the west end of town, 90-A at 16th Street, Maeker’s is a combination package store, mini-meat market and tavern (parking can require careful maneuvering) that makes a small variety of sausages including a very unique bright red pork and beef wiener that I’m very impressed with. They must use very good cuts of meat for these dogs and the spices are very good – they are very savory, more interesting than any frankfurter I’ve ever had. They’re ready-to-eat but benefit from warming up. I kind of feel like it’s a shame serving these on standard issue hot dog buns but I haven’t figured out yet what else to serve them with.

And the wieners are not even the best find; Maeker’s beef, cheese and jalapeno summer sausage is probably my favorite Texas-made summer sausage, and the dry sausages are awesome, also.

Patek’s, on the other end of town, also makes some good wieners and dry sausages; I’ll report on them in an upcoming post. If all you’ve ever been to Shiner for is to visit the brewery, you’re missing a lot.



Anonymous said...

Good to see you reporting on sausage makers again. Did you ever check out Kaspers in Weimar?

Bruce said...

Several people have recommended them to me but I haven't gotten around to it yet. It's definitely on my list of places to check on my next trip to Central Texas. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I stumbled onto this site. My wife and I are from the Katy and Wharton Tx areas. I grew up in Wharton and my dating years at Riverside Hall in East Benard. I now live in N. Carolina. I miss my Cezch and German foods. Trying to get line on people that my ship. I might get my son to send me a care pak. We can drive 90 mile and get Blue Bell. I can get Shiner Bock here also.

Bruce said...

Hi Jeff. Most of the places ship and most have websites. See the article on summer sausages for Jr.'s Texas Best in MacKay; Prasek's in Hillje has a website, too. Google on Patek's Shiner Smokehouse for their website. I'll get around to posting reviews on all of these eventually - just been to Jr's once and hope to get back down there this week.

Vincek's in East Bernard ships but so far as I know doesn't have a website but the number is 1800-844-MEAT. The flyer I have from them is several years old and just lists 'gift packs' that they ship but you could call and ask them.

Thanks for the comment. You're probably familiar with Hinze's in Wharton? I haven't been in a couple of years but as I remember it's very good. Anything else down that way you can recommend?

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to your review on Patek's Shiner Smokehouse sausages. I found some of their Shiner beer brats and smoke breakfast links at HEB and they were very good. I heard they have a good variety of flavors. Might be making a trip to Shiner very soon!

Bruce said...

I hope that was an HEB here in Houston. It'd be great to have them available here but I've never seen 'em. I have some of the wieners in the freezer but the beer brats sound interesting.