Are Wiener Sausages popular in Vienna?

From Viennese and Frankfurters

From Irene Krauss

These are usually a little longer and thinner than the usual sausage. The terms Frankfurter and Wiener are mixed up quite arbitrarily. The confusion becomes complete, since outside of Frankfurt there are sausages of Frankfurter Art, whereas abroad pretty much every scalded sausage is known as Frankfurter anyway.

It is also a widespread misconception that frankfurters and wieners are a fast food achievement of the 20th century. Both have long enriched the menu and have historical depth. This is especially true for the Frankfurt sausages, which the Frankfurt city chronicler Achilles August Lersner (1662 to 1732) mentions as early as 1487. The smoked specialty has always been made in Frankfurt's “Worschtquartier”, the district between the cathedral and Römerberg, where all butchers traditionally practiced their craft. They sold their goods from their sales stand, popularly known as the “Schirn”. No one was allowed to run a business outside of this area.

The Frankfurt sausages could have become acceptable as early as 1562. In any case, chronicles tell of the coronation of Emperor Maximilian II, when the authorities donated sausages. However, there is still no definitive evidence as to whether these were smoked Frankfurter sausages. To clarify the terms: The somewhat misleading term bratwurst was a common term for a meat filling similar to the meat - the sausage meat or roast - and has nothing to do with roast in today's sense (old high dt. Brato = meat without Bacon and bones).

The first known, binding recipe for Frankfurter sausages, which is still valid today, can be found in a book in 1749 with the somewhat cumbersome title "Sincere and proven news of all sensual cookery and baked goods". You can read about the fine taste of the smoked Frankfurter sausage made from finely chopped pork, mainly because of the seasoning with nutmeg and mace, salt, pepper, thyme, marjoram or coriander. It is therefore certain that the sausages only contained pork, since the Frankfurt butchers were only allowed to process one type of meat until the introduction of the freedom of trade in 1864.

In the late 19th century, the "Frankfurters" were given a new face, more precisely their current slim, long shape, through the use of hard-wearing sheep string from Persia and Afghanistan instead of the thicker pig intestines used until then. Meat grinder and cutter also made the meat meat finer.

The state was consulted at an early stage so that foreign sausage suppliers could not simply refer to every cooked sausage as Frankfurter. In 1860 the authorities protected traditional sausages throughout Germany as a geographical designation of origin. In 1929 the Berlin Court of Appeal followed suit and finally ruled that the name Frankfurter was a geographical designation of origin and by no means just a generic term. According to this, boiled sausages in Germany can only be referred to as original Frankfurt sausages if they come from the Frankfurt a.M. economic area. According to the relevant purity law, these sausages must consist of pure, lean pork and are filled in natural casings, mostly from sheep. Their diameter should not exceed 24mm; the length between 18 to 20cm. The Frankfurters are smoked cold over beech wood and then scalded.
Irene Krauss was the director of the Museum of Bread Culture in Ulm. Since 1995 she has been working as a freelance art historian, journalist and book author.
National suppliers outside Frankfurt, on the other hand, refer to their products as Frankfurter-style sausages. In Austria and Switzerland, on the other hand, the term Frankfurter usually refers to the sausage type known in Germany as Viennese sausages.
The confusion seems perfect. And that brings us to the Wienerle, who repeatedly competed with the original for first place among German sausages. Curiously, the said Vienna sausages are said to have been invented by a Frankfurt butcher named Johann Georg Lahner. In 1805 the emigrated Lahner in Vienna lifted a type of sausage made from minced pork and beef out of the sausage kettle and called it Frankfurter. Unlike in Frankfurt, the butchers in Vienna were allowed to use a mixture of beef and pork. The Austrian appetite lexicon from 1894 does not mention Lahner, however, but writes: "Frankfurter sausages made from minced pork in finger-thick mutton intestines are an achievement of the 19th century that came to Vienna from southern Germany around 1840." These sausages were apparently popular, because in a Viennese novel published in 1868 there is talk of "sausage with horseradish".

These sausages, known abroad as Viennese, gradually became world famous. In Austria, however, nobody knows them by this name - they are also called Frankfurter here. In Austria, tourists should therefore always order a Frankfurter and not a Viennese, otherwise they will get a kind of cold meat sausage.