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Schnitzelbank's German Baked Spareribs

Subject: Re: Schitzelbank Grand Rapids Michigan recipes
From: Fred
Date: 11/1/2018 11:18 AM

On 10/31/2018 7:00 PM, Fred wrote:

Hi Uncle Phaedrus...

You've done really well tracking down recipes from this "Amazing" restaurant... I actually 
have the original GR Press newspaper article giving these recipes. The thing that's driving 
me nuts is that, I've been totally unsuccessful in locating the other recipes that "were 
stated by the Press" were issued soon after at:

As background, my father started going to the Schnizelbank right after World War 2 (where 
it began, at a nearby corner drugstore). My Dad went there for lunch every day thereafter, 
we became friends with the owner... And forever after we went to this wonderful restaurant 
whenever we could.

In Grand Rapids it became a tradition (I'm now 67 years old)...

Everything about it was unique and precious. And sadly when it closed, no one knew it was 

In any case, the one recipe they offered every day, in limited quantities for lunch, (and 
only once a week as a featured meal) was their German baby back ribs... And guaranteed they 
were always sold out unless you got there quickly. 

This could be the jewel in your crown, and multitude of people would sing your praises (if 
you could find it).

As for me, I think I believe I am the closest person to having figured it out... But, if you 
don't mind... Could you try and find theirs...??? I will happily give you the cooking methods 
"I know", which is the key. And all that remains is the appropriate spices

Fred S

Hello Fred,

Well, I had no success finding the Schnitzelbank's ribs recipe, no mention at all of "baby back ribs."  Your use of that term bothered me. I just could not imagine a traditional German restaurant using that term. The American term "baby back ribs" was unknown before 1981. It gained popularity when a national chain started using it in their TV commercials in the late 90s or early 2000s.

I found a scan of a Schnitzelbank's menu here:  Schnitzelbank's Menu
There is no menu listing for "baby back ribs" on it. However, under "Our Weekly Schedule of Old Favorites" there is an item like this: "Monday - Baked Spareribs." Is that what you mean?

Yes, I know they are the same thing, but when you are searching for recipes, you have to use the name that the dish was given. I did a thorough search for both "Schnitzelbank's Baby Back Ribs" and "Schnitzelbank's Baked Spareribs", but I found no mention either way. Sorry.

When Schnitzelbank's closed in 2006, two of the chefs, a father and son, went on to open "Dill's German American Restaurant" in Middleville, Michigan. That would have probably been your best bet to find the ribs again and to possible obtain a recipe, but Dill's closed in 2012 and the younger chef Dill moved to Hawaii to work in a restaurant there, "Hula Grill" in Kaanapali, Hawaii.

I'll post this for reader input.


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