One of the new restaurants we tried in 2022 was Schmidts Sausage Haus in German Village. We enticed Marta and Deloe Mathatas to come down to Columbus to visit us by offering a meal at Schmidts followed by a visit to The Book Loft. Marta is a retired pastor as well as a long-term friend and mentor. She and Deloe are huge bibliophiles so going to the Book Loft was a big draw for her.
We met at Schmidts Sausage Haus for lunch. The sausage business was established in 1886 with the restaurant following shortly thereafter. Talk about embodying the spirit of German Village! The waitresses all wore dirndls, although the male waitstaff did not wear lederhosen. The restaurant was full but we didn’t have to wait for a table. The little entry area has a display of sausages, cream puffs, and strudel.
My favorite thing about the menu was that it had the desserts first. That tells me the restaurant has the right priorities. The menu items were traditional German foods, perhaps as interpreted by Americans. Schmidts is famous for its specially made sausage, so that is a menu category on its own. They have knockwurst and bratwurst, but their most famous sausage is the Bahama Mama with a spicy-hot kick to it. Spätzle, a type of egg pasta served with gravy, is a popular side dish. Entrees include schnitzel and sauerbraten with cooked cabbage.
I decided to order the Milder Mama, a slightly less hot version of the traditional sausage, with German potato salad. Marta and Deloe both went full German by ordering the schnitzel with spätzle and cabbage. Tom got a chicken sandwich with waffle fries, skipping over the German heritage of Schmidts entirely. Wait, I take that back. It came served on a pretzel bun. All of the food was very good. My milder mama was spicier than I usually eat but still delicious.
Although we were pretty full from our meal, we couldn’t leave without trying a dessert. Marta and I each ordered some apple strudel, which we shared with our husbands. It was very good. The cream puffs are award winning, and looked delicious, but I always like the way they look better than the way they taste. A little cream puff goes a long way for me. Maybe I would like them better if I had one of Schmidts.
Speaking of desserts, one of the items offered was German Chocolate Cake. Tom wanted to know what the Germans were doing ruining chocolate cake with coconut. The German Chocolate Cake was developed by a man named Samuel German who was not of German heritage. The recipe, from 1857, used a special kind of baking chocolate created by Samuel German that came to be known as German Baker’s Chocolate. German Chocolate cake is named after the man, not the country.
After our delicious and filling lunch at Schmidts Sausage Haus, we walked over to the Book Loft and spent a leisurely couple of hours browsing the store. I always like going to the Book Loft because I never see all of it. Marta spent most of her time in the mystery section and Deloe, like Tom, headed to the science section. I roam all over.
We enjoyed spending time with Marta and Deloe and were grateful that they were willing to drive to Columbus for a visit. Schmidts Sausage Haus and the Book Loft are two places to which I will return again.