In this entry to Pizza Man’s Meet the Partners series, we will be shining a spotlight on the great sausage-maker of Milwaukee: Vincenzo Carini, aka Vinny of Vinny’s Sausages. Vinny was born in Porticello Sicily, and although his family moved to the States shortly after his birth, they were certain to take their recipes and traditions with them. This means that when Vinny began to help cook in the kitchen with his mother, he was taught the classic Sicilian cooking style from the beginning.
In the 1980’s, Vinny started making his classic Sicilian food at a local Italian food store on the South Side of Milwaukee, home to the heart of the Milwaukee-Italian community at the time. While all of his food was highly revered, his sausages were what people kept returning for, and so Vinny’s Sausage Co. was born, and has continued for over 40 years.
The sausages are such a staple because they seem to be a rarity in the food industry. “I am one of the only sausage-makers that can actually say we are all-natural,” Vinny said. “I believe in all-natural and simple products. Our health is based so much on what we eat, and I want to make sure that we are giving people the best ingredients to eat.”
In the past decades, Vinny’s sausages has grown in popularity, but not in company size. “We are a family business, and we always will be,” said Vinny. Even though he has a small team to cook, package and deliver sausages each day, you will find Vinny checking ingredients, grinding meat, and packaging sausages right there with the rest of the team, just as often as you’ll find him behind a desk running his business. “My favorite part of my work is that my business is a direct reflection on me,” said Vinny. “When someone compliments my product, they are complimenting my recipes, my craftsmanship and my dedication to making good food, not just the outcome.”
Because of this, when the Pizza Man team decided that it was time to go back to our roots, it was immediately clear that we had to partner with Vinny again. Pizza Man had been a partner with Vinny’s sausages in the past for roughly 3 decades. Unfortunately the tie had been broken, but we are so excited to start the relationship again. When someone cares about the ingredients as much as we do, we think its important to work alongside them.
When it comes to his favorite sausage, Vinny can’t decide between his mild Italian and his Polish. “Its all about the seasoning to bring out the right flavors,” said Vinny. “The Italian is filled with a delicious fennel, traditional to the Italian recipe, while the polish is sweeter with a dash of all-spice and marjoram.”
Here’s to hoping for another 30 year’s of celebrities and Milwaukeeans alike enjoying Vinny’s homemade, classic sausages. Be sure to stop by Pizza Man to taste his sausages for yourself. Any recipe that includes sausage will come from his team. Or, order some links for yourself by clicking here, and be sure to watch out for his new “Game Day Brats” at Pick ‘n Save, in partnership with LeRoy Butler.