Opening Hours: 3pm to 11pm, daily; opens till 1am on Saturday, Sunday and Eve of Public Holidays Website: http://wuerstelstand.blogspot.com/
You can’t miss Erich’s Wuerstelstand when you traverse the winding alleys of Chinatown. He sticks out like a sore thumb amid the scores of local hawkers lined up in Trengganu Street, where his small kiosk is decked out with clippings he has amassed from various publications depicting his unique sausage stand. Erich Sollbock is not here to provoke, rather he feels right at home in the crowded streets cooped up in a small space, since he says that sausage kiosks are de rigueur in Austria and Germany.
Opening shop in the midst of Chinatown is not a ploy to garner attention. Sollbock heard that the Singapore Tourism Board was allocating a space for a Western stall when it was planning the night market in 2004. He thought it would be an opportune time to offer a unique and colourful flavour to the attraction by setting up shop in an area chockfull of local food.
“Having an ang moh (ang moh is local vernacular for Caucasion) in Chinatown is something Singaporeans are not used to, I am indeed the first ang moh to set-up a hawker stall here.”
Sollbock went on to elaborate that tourists from Germany and Austria are often intrigued to see him there, since it is the last thing they expect to see in Asia, lest in Chinatown. He says that they often get a culture shock, and are reminded of home. “Of course I get stared at; people are very curious. But what I am doing is to provide something that is available to everyone, they don’t have to step into a restaurant and pay exorbitant prices.”
He explains that donning a chef’s uniform – because he is one – ultimately puts people at ease; it makes them feel secure that what they eat is authentic. Sollbock has been in Asia for 16 years; his first stop in the Far East was China where he was stationed in a five-star establishment. He spent the next eight years moving around the region as a chef under the hotel group. Right before he started his stint in Chinatown, he was briefly chef de cuisine at the German Club in Singapore.
His special sausages run the gamut from traditional bratwurst to an uncanny made-in-Germany curry wurst. His most popular pickings include his special boiled bockwurst served in a crispy roll topped with mustard and the käsekrainer – the smoked sausage with cheese (which goes S$3.50 each).
Sollbock says he has no plans to venture into a restaurant business just yet. He feels that right now he is doing a community service by providing a cuisine still unfamiliar withmost locals.“I am happy to offer something unique, the scene is always changing and I enjoy interacting with people from all walks of life.” He goes on to say that opening a restaurant is a very big step as you have to stay on top of diners’ constantly changing tastes.
“Customers are always looking for something more exciting, they often go ‘So what? What is so special about this restaurant?’ What I offer is something no one has ever seen. And the location allows more people to discover my food, so I don’t have to keep changing what I believe is great food.”
Note: This review was extracted from AsiaCuisine.
I went to this stall on Saturday, 27 October 2007. I ordered 2 mini combos (I was given 3 small sausages – each is the length of my finger). Each mini combo costs me S$3. I also tried the käsekrainer – the smoked sausage with cheese and this costs me S$3.50. I also managed to get a set of the onion bread (1 set = 3 pcs) for S$2/set.
Sampling all the food – the smoked sausage with cheese was the best but if it’s your first time tasting the sausages here, go for the mini combo so you will find out which sausage you like. I must say that he is very generous with the mustard, chilli sauce & tomato sauce.
The onion bread was so-so. You don’t get the sharp, tangy taste of onions. My friends had a hard time figuring out what kind of bread it was until I told them what it was.
Overall, go for the cheese sausage – you can’t go wrong with that, unless you don’t like cheese. And don’t expect a single sausage to fill your empty stomach; treat it like a snack and you’ll enjoy it thoroughly.