Chocolate and cheese comes to mind when you think of Switzerland and food. But there is so much more to discover! Born and growing up in Zuerich, there is one craving I have when I go back there: A sausage at Sternengrill! This place at Bellevue, near the Lake and the Opera House is a landmark spot where people from various backgrounds - professors from the close by University, construction workers, students, seniors and tourists - unite to enjoy a Bratwurst or a Cervelat and a crusty Buerli (a hearty bread, that is perfect to accompany the juicy sausage). Swiss people eat these sausages on every occasion, no barbecue, no soccer game, no flea market is perfect without a Wurststand.
Ever since I came to New York more than 13 years ago, to share my life with my husband Neal, an American Saxophone player, whom I met and fell in love with at a gig in Zurich, I was looking out for a sausage as tasty as the Swiss ones. In vain! Even at the celebrations of August 1st, the Swiss National Holiday, organized by Swiss expats, I was disappointed by what was offered on the grill.
Being a trained seamstress I started my professional life in my new hometown NYC in various positions in the fashion industry. It was during photoshoots that I discovered where I wanted to go next. I took over catering jobs for photoshoots, finding it much more satisfying bringing good food to the table and make people happy. Working as an assisting food stylist was another welcome experience to work with food.
After my two kids were born, I spent more time at home. Still missing a place where I could get a Bratwurst the way I like it, I decided to take matter in my own hands! Why not produce my own brand and bring the original taste of a Swiss Bratwurst to New York? It was about time!
It took me two years - to extract the best recipe from a Swiss butcher and then to find a skilled butcher here who was willing to experiment with me. Biggest challenge: to adapt the recipe to the condition of American standards. Swiss Kalbsbratwurst is made of veal, we had to replace it with sustainable beef and pork. To still get the right flavor and texture was a long way. But it worked: Starwurst was born, juicy and yummy like the original.
We did not stop there. We reinvented the cervelat - the most favorite and versatile Swiss sausage - too.