Kroeger & Sons Meats, family owned and operated at Findlay Market since 1972, passed recently to a new family. Started by Paul Kroeger in 1972 and passed to his sons, Mike and Mark, in 1994, this stand has a long tradition of quality and creativity. Paul Kroeger was trained in Germany as a Master Sausage Maker before coming to Cincinnati. His attention to detail and extensive knowledge of meat-cutting and sausage production was handed down to his sons and then passed in 2006 to the Gannaway family.
Debbie Knueven Gannaway and her son, Matthew, became the new owners in January, 2006. They spent six months during 2005 being trained by Mike and Mark Kroeger and will continue operating the business with the same recipes and the same high standards for quality products and customer service established by two generations of Kroegers.
Debbie has been a Findlay Market shopper for more than 25 years. She has catered small and medium size events (10 to 250 people) and was a Wednesday lunch volunteer cook at Old St George Church from 1999 until it closed in 2005. She served on the board of the Friends of Findlay Market for nine years. She studied public markets in Seattle and New York by attending Public Market Conventions and makes a point of visiting markets wherever she travels. She also serves on the board as Treasurer of the Cincinnati State Alumni Association.
Matt worked in the restaurant business for 12 years before coming to Findlay Market, doing everything from Salad Chef, to Delivery Person, to Cook, to Manager of the Kenwood LaRosa's. He thoroughly understands how to provide what customers want - good service and quality products, delivered with efficiency and pride. He can cut you a Crown Roast, a stuffed Pork Loin roast, or the famous Kroeger style Baby Back Ribs.
On any given day, Kroeger and Sons Meats offers about 40 varieties of sausage. Every sausage is hand made. No binders, colors, extenders, or artificial preservatives are ever used and every sausage is sold in a natural casing. Top quality fresh pork is the main ingredient in most Kroeger recipes, but customers can also find several delicious varieties of chicken sausage, a duck sausage, a lamb sausage, and the "Reubenwurst" which combines corned beef with pork, sauerkraut, and Thousand Island dressing. All fresh pork sausages are 83 to 87 percent lean. Chicken sausages are made only with fresh whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts and are 90 to 95 percent lean.
Here are just a few Kroeger & Sons creations, both traditional and unique, available from Stand 110 at Findlay Market.
Brats: Kroeger's quintessential "white brat" is made using a recipe brought from North Germany by Paul Kroeger. Bayou Andouille: both a mild and hot version of the standard pork andouille, plus a chicken version.
Metts: German Mettwurst, smoked or fresh, hot or mild. And don't forget the Biermetts.
Italian: one type of this favorite can't satisfy everyone, so Kroeger & Sons created 6 different kinds - mild and hot Italian, mild and hot Chicago-style Italian, Parma style, and Chicken.
Napa Valley: fresh green bell peppers, onions, and plum tomatoes marinated in red wine, olive oil, garlic, and parmesan cheese - once the mixture is ready, it's combined with fine-textured sausage meat and seasoned with fennel.
Linguisa: a Portuguese sausage flavored with red wine, marjoram, and garlic.
Vidalia Onion: one of the brothers' all-time favorites, this sausage is mildly sweet, with parmesan cheese and chunks of fresh Vidalia onion.
Potato: a Swedish sausage variety with chives, coriander, and pieces of potato.
Corned beef: finely-ground brisket seasoned with garlic, coriander, caraway, celery, and fresh sauerkraut.
Chicken Mediterranean: Chicken, Italian seasonings, marinated artichoke hearts, and black olives.
Chicken Basil: Chicken seasoned with basil, garlic, sun dried tomatoes, and pine nuts - a truly unique and flavorful sausage.