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It's not every day that you get invited to check out a sausage factory. And no, it's not in Wilton Manors. Get your mind out of the gutter. All jokes aside, this place is the real deal; an artisan deli with homemade European-style sausages made on-site.
Old World Sausage Factory has been around since 1954. New owner Steven Chase took over five months ago and has been making changes ever since. "This place used to be an old time sausage factory and nothing else. Since I took over and renovated, I have turned it into a New York Style Deli with the sausage factory attached," he says.
Chase is the grandson of Lenny Pines, the founder of Hebrew National, and says that making sausages is in his blood.
"I was weened on wieners," he says. "I grew-up on Long Island. Dad worked for Hebrew National for 37 years. It was always my dream to work for the family business, but by the time I was old enough, it was sold. So I started doing it on my own. In 2000, I won a best product award for my bison hot dogs."
He was thrilled when he got the opportunity to open his own sausage factory. "The previous owner was not in good health. It was up for sale and I was able to purchase it for a reasonably good price. I wanted to do what my grandfather did; start with a small factory and grow it from there."
Chase employs a trained butcher/ sausage maker to come in three days a week. Sausages and hot dogs are made by running meat through a grinder, a chopper, and then a stuffer, which stuffs it into casings with a blend of seasonings. Depending on the type of sausage or hot dog, it is either smoked, boiled, or left raw.
Chase generally purchases shoulders and has them butchered on site, but he also uses whole birds, chicken thighs, or ground chuck depending on the size of the batch. The meat is processed in a ratio of either eighty percent meat to twenty percent fat, or seventy/ thirty. This is achieved by combining leaner cuts of meat with fattier ones. According to Chase, "You have to add fat to some recipes, like the traditional, old school European sausages, but I like to try to keep them as lean as I can. I don't use much fat in the bison or chicken products."
While Chase's passion is sausages and hotdogs, he is using the deli to focus on high-quality food with a healthier edge. "My executive chef Georgie Grey makes everything from scratch. He doesn't use salt, just lots of flavor. He makes our corned beef, brisket, beef and barley soup, spinach knish, stuffed pepper, stuffed cabbage, and everything else. He's the best guy I have," says Chase.
Chase plans to expand the business by opening outlets in farmers markets such as the Hollywood Yellow Green Market and the Pompano Green Market. He thinks his focus on all-natural meats sourced directly from ranchers in the Midwest will be a good fit for the markets. "I only used grass-fed bison beef," he brags. "None of my meats have fillers or by-products, and everything is gluten-free."
Whether you've been looking for that elusive healthy (ish) sausage or you just love meat, meat, and more meat, the deli offers a wide range of sandwiches and meals at reasonable prices. For $4.99 you can get either a mild italian sausage on a hoagie with sauteed onions and pepper and a bag of chips, or their economy booster special: two natural casing hot dogs and a soda.
Old World Sausage Factory is located at 1348 South Federal Highway in Pompano Beach. Call 954-942-2004.
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