Stoke’s Guide to Lining the Gut
Our finger-lickin’ guide to maximising your imbibing
Lining the gut is a delicate and complex artform. For eons, Stokies have attempted to find the optimum balance between liquid absorption and stomach-lining to ensure maximum drinkies and minimum hangover. When you reach the bier halls of Oktoberfest, you’ll be confronted with many an exotic German drinking snack. Which one is the best investment? Read our comprehensive review of German drinking foods to find out.
- Pork knuckle aka Schweinshaxe
“But porks don’t even have knuckles!” we hear you say? Wrong. A pig’s knuckle is, according to the all-knowing Google, the joint that connects Miss Piggy’s little hoofy-foot to her juicy porky leg. The pork knuckle is everything you imagine it to be – bony, fatty, sinewy, complex to eat – and yet more. Done right (the only way the Germans do it), pork knuckle is also delicious – chewy, crispy and greasy, just like the little bits of your skin that you like to peel off and eat after a strong sunburn. Good drinking food if you don’t mind getting visceral with your meat, but oil and water don’t mix, thus Herr Pig’s knuckle is not the optimum choice for your beer-soaking and drinking longevity needs. We rate ‘em 3/5 bratwursts.
- Big Pretzels
Rumour has it that pretzels were originally invented by an Italian monk, designed to represent a child with arms crossed in prayer. The Germans have perfected this snack both holy and hole-y – crunchy and salty on the outside, soft and doughy on the inside, nothing is more delightful or reminiscent of your overweight and cranky alcoholic uncle. These bad boys are easy to eat, and just like that uncle, good for soaking up a big ol’ Weissbeer. The pretzels at Oktoberfest are extra large, ideal sponges for a stein and such fuss-free eating that even the most inebriated idiot-abroad can handle them. With a couple of these baked delights up ya, the Prost need never stop. We give brezls 4/5 bratwursts.
- Roast Chicken aka Hendl
Whole chickens, are they not a universal foodstuff if ever the world did see one? Boiled whole in Hanoi, rotating row-upon-spiked-row in Barcelona, or sitting in their own juices aromatic and browned and discounted-after-5pm in Australian supermarkets. Of course Munchen, a veritable wonderland of meats, has its own take on the chook. Golden, roasted and smothered in butter at the last minute, these delicious meat-fowls are a must-try for those carnivores (wimps) not game to tackle the pork knuckle. So much protein in one convenient meal means that you can just eat chickens for the entire volkfest and continue to tell everyone that you’re #shredding. We rate the roast chook 4/5 bratwursts because we too are shredding, bro.
Known as Radi, this little fella ain’t your average radish variety. Such is Germany’s dedication to beer, it is a specific variety aptly named the Munich Beer Radish, not to be confused with the Garden Salad Radish. Spiral cut and dusted with salt and chives, it is but a vegan’s saviour in the meaty, buttery depths of the beer halls, and goes down a treat alongside an ale. It is also the saviour of everyone sick of listening to their vegan friends go on about how hungry they are – shut Oceanstorm up with a radish to the face. Sure, radishes ain’t gonna soak up the beer too well, but as a non-bloating snack they leave ample room for more carbonated, wheaty drinks – the only reason you’re even here. We give the radish 2.5/5 bratwursts.
- Potato Dumplings aka Kartoffelknödel
You thought dumplings were an Asian cuisine food? You so stupid. They are also a German drinking food, and a mighty fine one at that. They might look like pasty-white testes, but these are a far more delicious kind of pasty ball, filled with potato and nutmeg and sometimes egg and other nice things. They are often served alongside the aforementioned pork knuckle, for soaking up the juices which ooze unchecked from the braised animal joint. Warm and carby but not too greasy, these dumplings are our pick for tummy-lining fare. Getting deep in some potato balls before getting balls-deep in a stein, 5/5 bratwursts from us.
Of course there was always going to be a wurst dish on this list. The name may remind you of that yellow-grey family favourite, curried sausages, but currywurst is more like curried sausages’ sophisticated and better-looking father, a silverback among sausage meals. Typically, it is made of pork sausage boiled, fried, sliced up and served with lashings of German curry-ketchup and a sprinkling of curry powder. Often served with chips, a tangy currywurst is the perfect lil’ saus friend for your free-flowing fluids. Carbohydrates, protein, fats and condiments a complete meal makes – we give the currywurst 5/5 bratwursts.
Written by the Hobos