As tour guides, we're often asked about the different types of German sausages, which German sausage is best, and of course, where to get the best German sausage in Berlin? Here is the definitive overview of Germany's most popular sausage varieties because at a time when even traveling around Germany has become problematic, we can still taste the different regions of Germany with the Wurst options!
Berlin’s ubiquitous currywurst is a sliced Bratwurst with a healthy slathering of “chillup”, a chilli/curry ketchup. Then sprinkled with a generous amount of curry powder. It was invented in Berlin by Hertha Heuwer and eaten in huge amounts, both in Berlin and around Germany. In Berlin, it is sometimes available with sausage skin (the West version) or without sausage skin (the East version) and today is quite common to find in vegetarian version too.
Try it on nearly any corner in Berlin, but we're big fans of Curry 36. It's in a few locations around the city, but the original is at the Mehringdamm U-bahn station in Kreuzberg.
Thuringer Bratwurst is a large grilled sausage made from finely minced pork and beef. Enjoyed either in a Brötchen, or on a plate and regularly served with either mustard or ketchup (or both!). The Thuringer usually includes a few extra spices such as marjoram or caraway and is a staple at events such as football matches.
Try it at the Zollpackhof Beergarden, on the banks of the Spree near Hauptbahnhof.
Nürnberger Rostbratwurst is a smaller grilled sausage about this size of your finger from the region of Franconia. Normally served three at a time in a single bun or six at a time on a plate with some sauerkraut and potatoes. You might not be able to physically wander through the gorgeous Nuremberg old town, but you can still taste the pride of the region.
Try it at the Augustiner Restaurant, on Charlottenstrasse near Gendarmenmarkt in Mitte.
Blutwurst or blood sausage is for the more hardcore carnivores. It comes in different sizes and has slight variations across different regions but generally, it is made from congealed cow or pigs blood with fillers such and oatmeal, meat, bread or fat. It can be eaten cold on bread, or with a quick boil alongside mashed potatoes.
Try it at Blutwurstmanufaktur on Karl-Marx-Platz in Neukölln. They make a lot of delicious sausages, but their Blutwurst is award-winning!
The Frankfurter which is of course from Frankfurt, is unsurprisingly the closest German sausage to an American Hotdog. However, the traditional Frankfurter Wurstchen is as revered as any of the others on this list as it has had geographical protected status since 1860, meaning if you are having a Frankfurter that isn’t from Frankfurt, well it’s just a sausage in the Frankfurt-style. It is normally made from finely minced veal, smoked at a low temperature, and then parboiled before serving, usually with potato salad.
Try it at Bier's on Kurfürstendamm 195 in Charlottenburg.
Knackwurst is a stubby beef sausage usually flavoured with garlic and an absolute favourite for summer barbecues, as its skin tends to go crispy when grilled. It derives its name from the verb Knacken – to crack, due to the cracking of the crispy skin when devoured. Sometimes also called a Knockwurst, it is especially popular in northern Germany where it is often served with sauerkraut and potato salad.
Try it at Konnopke's Imbiss at the Eberswalderstr. U-Bahn station on the U2. They've been around since 1930 and are a Prenzlauerberg icon.
Weisswurst is the sausage of the south of Germany and especially Bavaria. So much so that it even gave birth to the term Weisswurstäquator (white sausage equator) due to the ability to recognize where you are in Germany purely by the sausage being consumed. It is made from veal and pork, normally in the morning, and is very perishable due to a lack of preservatives in the preparation process and even today it would be strange to see a Bavarian eating a white sausage after lunch. There is even a saying in Munich stating that white sausages should never hear the noon church bells. They are cooked in hot water and then served in a small bowl of that same water so they stay warm. Eaten either by sucking the meat out of one end or splitting them open and scooping out the fillings, commonly paired with a pretzel and a beer.
Try it at Maximillian's Restaurant on the corner of Friedrichstrasse and Kronenstrasse. Look for the giant man in Lederhosen!