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Bratwurst und Bier; Dortmund in the Champions League: the catering report

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By Walter Broeckx, still in good shape for the moment

Okay, where do you start when coming home around 2am? By going to bed? No, by opening my laptop and doing what I should do: write a catering report

First of all I included the whole Benelux team in the catering review. Not that they knew about it but I kept an eye on them. First let us start by something that is very important for many football supporters: the beer. Now German beer is chemical free as the singer sang but I’m not sure that this is still the case. And of course this all depends on the fact if you consider alcohol to be something chemical or not. Because I have seen that rather a few of our travelling group did have some kind of (chemical) reaction after drinking a lot of German beer.

I must say that there must be a substance, chemical or not, in the beer that makes people start drooling.  After some 4 or 5 pints my well hidden moisture meter went mad from the drool that was produced by some of our members. For the price of £2.16 you could get one beer of 40cl in and around the stadium.  As I don’t drink beer myself I can’t judge the quality and the taste but looking at our members ordering more and more pints I had the impression that this was good value for money.

On to something I am more familiar with: food.  I didn’t know it before but I think Dortmund is the capital of Germany when it comes to food. From the moment I left my car in the carpark just a few hundred meters away from the stadium there were all kind of food stalls to see. And the variety of the food they had was Bratwurst with mustard, Bratwurst with ketchup, Bratwurst with just the bun wrapped halfway around it.  After carefully looking at the menu and holding up the queue behind me before I could make up my mind I decided to go for the Bratwurst with mustard.

For some reason and despite the fact that the German people are very practical they have never considered  a) making shorter Bratwurst or B) make the buns longer. Now you get a long Bratwurst (but I have seen bigger sausages in my life) and a short bun. Now this results in the fact that the Bratwurst is sticking out of the bun on two sides.  So you have to bite your way to the bun.  But then you have the problem with the udder. I could have used another word but I will keep it nice and clean just for the case that there are little children reading this.

The fact is you have to put the mustard or ketchup on the Bratwurst/bun yourself. But as the two ends of the Bratwurst stick out you have to be very careful when manipulating the udder and the nipple. Because before you know it the mustard or ketchup misses its target and you end up by spilling it on your cloths. One of our members actually managed to do this. And even before he was totally drunk.

But now let us come to the Bratwurst itself. The Wurst was hot. Not in the spicy meaning but in the well baked hot.  I noticed when eating my first Bratwurst of the evening. I almost burned my tongue and my lips. But when Tony and Billy ask me to go to a place nobody on Untold has gone before I stood my ground and  continued further with eating the Bratwurst.  Well in fact it didn’t taste that bad at all. Of course I’m not used to having 4star meals each day so maybe I am a bad person to judge those things but well I rather liked it. Away goes my reputation for ever about judging food I guess.  I must say the bun itself was a bit leathery. But what can you expect of a Bratwurst with mustard on a bun for the price of £2.25.

Now the most important thing was to see how my intestines (I had to look that up to be honest) would react to the Bratwurst and bun.  Because if I would have to run to the toilet before half time if the bun and Wurst wanted to come out one way or the other I could not give them a lot of points on the food scale. By half time all was in order with my body. And at the final whistle I still was alive and kicking.

So I took the liberty of eating another Bratwurst with mustard and bun after the game and I still don’t feel sick at all. So it is eatable and from a scale from 0 to 5 I will give it a 6.  If you want football Bratwurst  haute cuisine: just go to Dortmund.  You will survive it.  Well I did for the moment.

Walter making the difficult choice between mustard and ketchup on his Bratwurst

Finally the catering inside the stadium itself.  The speed of the service was rather slow I thought. But they had coffee I noticed Tony, but no cappuccino.  I took a large coca cola of around 40cl  (can I put in an expenses claim for this?) and it cost me £3. I paid in Euro of course as this is the currency we use on the continent (for the moment also still in Greece unless something has changed while I was in Dortmund) and it was 3.5 in Euro. But when I gave a 10 Euro note I only got a 5 Euro note back. Because you had to pay a warrant of 1.5 Euro for the plastic cup. Now it was a reusable plastic cup in hard plastic. So I took the drink back to the stand and wanted to hand the cup back at the end of the game and then I would get my 1.5 Euro back.

But after the late equaliser I forgot about it and now unless someone has recovered it and has taken my 1.5 Euro it still is standing on the seat of block 60, row 11, seat 14. Oh, don’t worry I will not be driving back to Dortmund to see if it is still there.

So I survived the food itself, the drink was coca cola like I know coca cola tastes. The beer had a strange influence on some of our members but I have been told the side effects will go away in a few hours.  So I will not be driving all the way to Dortmund to have myself a Bratwurst to be honest, but if we ever should play them again I know I can eat one or two without fearing to catch some serious disease.

Oh yes the personnel was very friendly, everything was given with a smile and friendly word. Ah, maybe it was my presence that made them so friendly. And all of them wanted to speak at me in English despite the fact I can speak German and ordered  in German. But they clearly thought: a guy in an Arsenal shirt must speak English.  So a big dankeschön to the catering staff and all the people who worked (knowingly or not) for this catering review.

Arsenal v Udinese: the Catering Report

Arsenal v the jolly lads from the west: the catering review

Urgent postscript.  We need someone to write catering reviews for a number of forthcoming games including this weekend, the league cup game next week and Bolton the following weekend.  If you can do it, please email Tony.Attwood@aisa.org

27 comments to Bratwurst und Bier; Dortmund in the Champions League: the catering report

  • Dan

    Twat. I dont want to read about food

  • Dan you know I really love these comments, like the ones that say, “I have just wasted 10 minutes reading this stupid article”. Since the article is headlined “the catering report” and since it is in the classification “catering” and since it is in the series “catering reports” what I am struggling to understand (and forgive me if I am a little slow on the uptake this morning, but one has to get up early and go to work and that sort of stuff you know) but what part of the phrase “catering report” did you not quite understand when you started to read?

    There is another deeper philosophical point however that I would raise here. You are saying “I don’t want to read about food” and that clearly relates to your use of the common or garden word “twat”. Now that suggests that we (Walter as the writer and myself as the commissioning editor) should have known in advance that you didn’t want to read this.

    More, we should have known that you didn’t want to read it, but you would in fact read it, IN SPITE OF NOT WANTING TO READ IT.

    So my question is, how should I have known that you, personally would not want to read this? Did you email me? Sorry if you did I didn’t get it. Perhaps it was a hurricane lamp you used. Or semaphore.

    Please do reply so I can know. I won’t know because I have just banned you for using the word “twat” but on the basis of your intellectual stance thus for and your metaphorical approach to reality I don’t think this should stop you writing again.

  • Zinc

    Haha, you could always try not reading it then Dan? Obviously an intelligent guy.

  • nicky

    Walter,
    Enjoyed the catering report. It’s a nice change from the usual post mortems which invariably contradict one another and are usually full of obscenities from ignorant people who really should keep quiet. Daqn is a typical example

  • nicky

    Walter,
    Enjoyed the catering report. It’s a nice change from the usual post mortems which invariably contradict one another or are full of obscenities from ignorant people who really should keep quiet. Dan is a typical example.

  • hooshimine

    At least you had yourself fun by chemical beer and bratwurst with mustard despite of the late equaliser it is more important.

  • Walter… you drank Coca Cola (Sponsor of FIFA)? Shame on you!

  • Pat

    You’re right about the relative sizes of the bratwurst and the bun and the problems with the mustard Walter. I’ve never understood that. Great catering report!

  • Lord Terrarz

    Delicious article, I shall look forward to more tasty morsels like this. Yum yum.

  • Fabian

    Hey,
    nice to read from the Dortmund food, as I’m acutally from a city near Dortmund. Just as a hint, die food around the stadium is normally of better quality, especially the bun and you could get other things than bratwurst (I’m currently amused that it is called also bratwurst in english, didn’t knew that).
    This was my first Arsenal game in a stadium, depending on the circumstances, that it isn’t really easy to get to emirates from here to watch matches. Because Arsenal is my love and Dortmund will always have a big space in my heart I could have enjoyed the match yesterday whatever it will end.
    Sadly it was a poor performance from Arsenal, especially the second half where it seems, that the whole match took place in our half, but that isn’t what I want to came out.
    I’m interested in reading and article about your impression about the atmosphere yesterday ’cause I had the feeling that it was absolut superb. Never seen such an atmosphere there in Bundesliga matches, I was absolutely stunned. I’ve read in a couple of arsenal boards, how some of the native Arsenal supporters were looking forward to visiting the Westfalenstadion (the original name of the stadium) because they heared that it must be a special atmosphere there, so I’m interested in how you experienced that part yesterday.
    Side note: Sry for my probably not so correctly use of the english language, you know, I’m german 😀

  • nicky

    Fabian, Your English is far better than my German!I would only correct one thing…..the play in the second half was, unfortunately for us Gooners, mainly in OUR half of the field!!!

  • Stuart

    Did you not see the guy Collecting the empty plastic cups post match, reckon he had about 15! Good money!

  • walter

    Fabian,
    I am working on an article about that in fact. But like the article said arriving at home at 2am I didn’t have the energy to write two articles.
    Oh and no negative side effects from the Bratwurst at all. 🙂

  • Byron

    @Dan-Don’t read the CATERING report if you don’t want to read about food.

    @Fabian- I watched on t.v, as I am in South Africa. The scenes around the stadium where breathtaking and I can only recall one moment of silence the entire game(Van Persie’s goal). If I had to go to an away game I would love to go to Dortmund.

  • Tell you what though, it was a really great game wasn’t it? OK sad about the goal at the end, but as entertainment, tactics, excitement – well it did it for me. And I was only watching on TV.

  • Danny

    Walter, you’ve made me want a Bratwurst! Now I’m going to have to leave my desk in the office and fly to Dortmund this afternoon. No doubt I will take a verbal beating from my boss when I return so i will tell him you were responsible 😉

  • Danny

    You don’t have to go to Dortmund. There is a bratwurst kiosk in Broadgate Circus near Liverpool Street station (for the out of towners, Liverpool Street is in London).

    If off to get one now.

  • willybilly

    Great site guys, but is this catering report thing a wind up!!?! Seems a tad surreal to say the least!! Anyway keep up the fantastic journalistic work you do here on Untold. With you here the footballing world is more protected from corruption, bent refs and dodgy sausages!

  • Surrealism has always been part of Untold. The very first Untold article was (as far as I remember) about how the Birmingham City manager was telling players to lie down on the great to stop play – and it has just gone on from there.

    Willybilly if you can think of something more surreal we could try and run that – but this is a demanding audience!

    Anyway, there’s a ref review and an Untold Media piece up now – but then come to think of it the Media is more surreal than we ever know how to be.

  • Danny

    Andy

    Broadgate Circus you say? I am as good as there!

  • FinnGooner

    First I loved the article and I LOVE CATERING REPORTS. Do keep them coming. I didn’t watch the match as it was not aired here (they showed some stupid match of some bankcrupt catalan club and those italians) and internet feed was bad. Also I had to get up at 5 am (BTW that was an hour after Walter got home).
    My problem with this was 1) I really need to move to some other country Finland is way too expencieve… 2) I get hungry and want bratwurst (Fabian that is what it is called in Finnish too).
    Oh my friend who is ManU fan is working in Dortmund and she bought me a match scarf and will post it to me some point (I didn’t even ask her to do that… must be that exception).
    Now I’m off to the rain and storm (that they say will be here today) to buy some bratwurst, I was going to have some beef with red wine sauce but thanks to Walter I want bratwurst.

  • WalterBroeckx

    I’ve started a new run at the Bratwurst shops… 😉

  • Fabian

    Nice to hear that you gonna do an article about this @walter.
    @Byron you’re right. As I remember, that was the only time the Dortmund supporters were quit, but it can’t be for long. I remember that the guys around me (I were in block 56 which is at the north east curve above the away fans) started pushing their team forward a few seconds after our goal.
    The other thing that I noticed to be special was, that nearly everybody were standing the entire match. Didn’t noticed something similiar to this in the Bundesliga so far.
    I’m still euphoric 😀

  • FinnGooner

    Walter I think some company making bratwurst should send you giftbasket or something (yes I’m back from shop and having my bratwurst with mustard without bun).
    talking about cappuccino wehen I was at Finland-Holland match last week I sat on most expencieve block (behind benches) and at beginning of 2nd halftime there was this girl selling coffee (normal, latte and cappuccino) and hot chocolate so no need to get out of the seat ;)But I guess that was just in that area.

  • tg

    I like the catering reports. A gazillion ways with Bratwurst. In Germany Who knew! Also want to big up the Bundeslige from what I saw and heard last night. Booze, fags, standing in the stadium, cheap tickets and brilliant support, most of which has all vanished from our game. It was good to see footy for the fans.

  • Gord

    The club (amateur) I was involved with in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada was 1st Deutsche Fussball Club Victoria. This club has existed since the mid to late 1950’s. Bratwurst is common there (but talking to the cook, it is usually some kind of Italian sausage). The sausage length to bun length problem is still present, but probably not as pronounced as you have found. The president of the club was from Berlin, and I don’t know if it is a Berlin thing or not, but steak tartar was also a very popular item. Raw (not cooked) finely chopped steak with tartar sauce and onions.

  • willybilly

    Tony, if I can think think of something i’ll let you know!