Adventures written by the VAMONDE Team
If someone in Minneapolis tells you they went to a sausage fest, they are probably not talking about the male-to-female ratio. Likely due to its history as first stop for new Americans from northern and eastern Europe, this city and especially its “Nordeast” neighborhood have a passion for sausages and charcuterie of all kinds. Since the 1950s, its favorite source for sausage and European-style deli fare has been Kramarczuk’s Deli in Northeast Minneapolis.
Kramarczuk's offers some of the classic sandwiches you’d expect to find at a deli including pastrami brisket, Reubens, and a “grinder” with a selection of cold cuts. For sausage fans, there are four types of grilled links to try, which can be served in a bun with sauerkraut and onions or “Cossack-style,” with melted cheese. The menu also includes Ukrainian meatballs, made with a mixture of pork, beef, and veal, and served with tomato cream or mushroom sauce.
Kramarczuk’s is primarily a deli, bakery, and specialty food store, with a cafeteria-like restaurant serving dishes made in house. If you’re from Eastern Europe, or just love the cuisine, this is the place to find favorites that might be difficult to find elsewhere, including pierogi, cabbage rolls, goulascz, and kielbasa krakowska (Polish sausage.) It’s a personal favorite of celebrity chef and TV foodie Andrew Zimmern.
Kramarczuk’s was founded Wasyl and Anna Kramarczuk, who moved to Minneapolis from Ukraine in the 1940s. The deli received an “America’s Classic” award from the James Beard Foundation in 2013. Each September it hosts a very popular annual festival dedicated to kielbasa.
Cover photo: Ernesto Andrade, CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.