schmidt's sausage pretzel roll

shotwell's, 20th & shotwell, san francisco
Shotwell's has long been one of my favorite local bars, since the days when it was known as the Inner Mission.  It's a cozy little spot with two pool tables, two great pinball machines, and a lot of fantastic beer.  Recently, Shotwell's has started doing a little cross-promotion with another neighborhood favorite of mine (located at the other end of the block from Shotwell's), Schmidt's.  Schmidt's is the newish German restaurant that moved into the spot once occupied by the El Farito convenience store, and it's a welcome addition to the hood (despite what certain neighbors of theirs would have you believe).  Schmidt's has a great happy hour special where you can get a sausage (served with sauerkraut, potato salad and mustard) and a small beer for $10.  Not bad!  Not a sandwich, either.  But when I saw a notice in Shotwell's that you could order a sausage on pretzel bread to go from Schmidt's for only $5, I was stoked.  It seemed too good to be true!  And a little confusing.  It was a deal Shotwell's had with Schmidt's, but you had to call Schmidt's yourself and place the order... and then go to Schmidt's to pick it up.... and then go back to Shotwell's, I guess?  Or not?  It seems like Shotwell's really doesn't factor in except they are the ones advertising this sandwich.  At any rate, Els and I had been looking forward to trying this out for weeks and last night we finally hit Shotwell's with our stomachs rumbling.  We ordered some beers, settled in, and called Schmidt's to place our order.  I called from inside the bar cuz it sort of seemed like you were meant to, but it probably would have been easier if I had stepped outside.  There were three different sausages available, and three different sauces; we decided on chicken apple with hot mustard, and bratwust with sweet mustard.  Fifteen minutes later, I hopped over to Schmidt's, forked over a mere $10, and returned to Shotwell's with our dinner.  Upon opening our to-go boxes however, it turned out that the too-good-to-be-true deal was just that.  The pretzel rolls were tiny, fitting only half a sausage on each.  Taste-wise, these sandwiches were fantastic- the sweetness of the chicken apple paired nicely with the hot mustard, although the hot mustard was MUCH hotter than we were expecting (not that I'm complaining!).  And the bratwurst tasted great with the sweet mustard (which was much sweeter than we were expecting).  Schmidt's excellent sauerkraut was piled high on both sandwiches, and the sourness added a fantastic bite.  But then, that's pretty much what these sandwiches were- just a fantastic bite.  And then, hunger pangs.  If you want some tasty bar snacks in Shotwell's and don't mind having to travel down the block to pick it up, then these are a great option.  But if you want something substantial, don't make the mistake we made- you're better off getting the happy hour meal at Schmidt's before going to Shotwell's.  Even if it isn't a sandwich.

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