LONSBERRY: We're Rochester, and We Have Big Wieners

As all housewives know, Rochester wieners are bigger than Syracuse or Buffalo wieners.

               And they’re about to get bigger.

               In the realm of how much wiener can you get in your mouth, Rochester is about to go all in.

               Word has come this week from Zweigle’s that Rochester wieners will now be available at a full quarter pound.

               Even the white ones.

               That’s eye-crossingly big.

               That’s “I think you’re going to break my bun” big.

               But that’s the way we roll in Rochester.

               Our wieners have been bigger than average since 1880. In those days, upstate New Yorkers were wrapping their meat in lamb casings.

               Apparently, they didn’t have latex back then.

               But when everyone else was going lamb, Rochester went pork. The made wieners not only look bigger, but actually be bigger.

               And why so big?

               Because the smaller wieners just weren’t satisfying.

               After a long, hard day of campaigning for women’s rights, the suffragettes needed something they could wrap their mouths around. And there’s no way a shrimpy wiener from Syracuse or Buffalo was going to get the job done.

               And Rochester women, many of them newly immigrated by ship from Europe, weren’t buying any of that motion-of-the-ocean crap.

               They knew it took a big wiener to hit the spot.

               And for 100 years, when you’ve had a Rochester wiener, you know you’ve had a wiener.

               But these are different times. And even the best wiener gets old. What used to have you licking your lips can, over time, become same-o same-o.

               And sometimes you have to stretch yourself.

               Which is where the new wiener comes in.

               These sleek beauties, nicely cut, weigh in at four full ounces.

               Problem is, we’re not sure what to call the giant wiener.

               Zweigle’s Magnum?

               Hindenburg, perhaps?

               Quarter pound her?

               I don’t know about you, but I’m going to call mine Simba.

               But getting back to the weight, there is some concern that, even though four ounces is more meat than most men know what to do with, there may be a tendency for those men, on first pulling out their new, bigger wiener, to claim that it is actually seven, eight or even nine ounces.

               But there is no need for Rochester men to exaggerate the size of their wieners. Rochester wieners are now twice as big as either Syracuse or Buffalo wieners.

               On a cold day, Syracuse and Buffalo wieners are barely more than Vienna sausages.

               They are kind of pale and limp, whereas a Rochester wiener is firm and stout. It’s the sort of product that makes other wieners stand up and take notice, if you’re into that sort of thing.

               So, Rochester, now that you’ve got a bigger wiener, what are you going to do with it?

               Where do you find a bun it’ll fit in, and what sort of condiment are you going to use?

               And do you leave the sauerkraut and relish, or do you serve it bare?

               While we’re talking about wieners, let’s not shy away from the issue of color. In the 1920s, before America came to its senses on a lot of things, Rochester’s favorite wieners were white. Ten years later, Syracuse likewise saluted the white wiener.

               Even today, almost 100 years on, people wax poetic about the days when the white wiener was king. It’s like they want to make America great again or something.

               But in both cities, no matter how much lip service people give the white wiener, it’s not the one they put in their mouths. When hungry shoppers go down to the deli, they want something red hot.

               And big.

               Which means Rochester wieners.

               Certainly, there will be naysayers, perhaps from Buffalo and Syracuse. They’ll talk about quality over quantity, and they’ll say that their wieners taste better.

               Sure. Guys with small wieners say that all the time.

               But mama’s not looking for an hors d’oeuvre, she’s looking for the main course.

               And tube steak has never looked better, or bigger.

               We’re Rochester, New York, and we have big wieners.

               And we’ll stand our wieners up next to anybody else’s to prove it, if you’re into that sort of thing.

               And, yes, they do come in natural casing.

               For that burst of flavor.

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