Nolechek's Meats, Inc. has been winning top awards for many years. Numerous trophies and certificates of recognition for our outstanding meats and sausages are on display in our store in Thorp, Wisconsin. The following list is just a sample of the recognition we've received over the years. While winning the awards certainly is a feather in our cap, it's even nicer to hear reports from others who have tried our products.
How Wisconsin Meat Are Judged
The Wisconsin Meat Production Competition is the largest of its kind in the United States. in 2015, 56 meat processing plants and meat markets, from throughout the state, entered 1,041 individual products into 36 product categories, including bacon, bratwurst, ham, summer sausage, smoked poultry, and a variety of other types of meat products. Over 40 judges, including food scientists, out-of-state meat processors, and other food industry professionals gather to effectively evaluate the many products. Individual products are scored for external appearance and eye-appeal, internal appearance, aroma, and taste, using a scale of 1,000 points.
Wisconsin Association of Meat Processors Awards
- Bacon - Grand Champion
- Chicken Bratwurst with Wild Rice & Dried Cranberries - Honorable Mention
- Italian Salami with Wine - Reserve Grand Champion
- Garlic Polish Sausage - Reserve Champion
- Italian Salami with Wine Snack Sticks - Reserve Champion
- Cheesewurst - Grand Champion
- Pork and Chicken Loaf - Reserve Grand Champion
- Skinless Beef Wieners - Champion
- Pork & Beef Breakfast Links - Reserve Champion
- Skinless Wieners - Grand Champion
- Italian Sausage - Reserve Champion
- Skinless Wieners - Reserve Champion
- Apple Cinnamon Bacon - Champion
- Flavored Bacon - Reserve Champion
- Pork & Chicken Loaf - Champion
- Smoked Polish/Kielbasa - Champion
- Fresh Polish Sausage - Reserve Grand Champion
- Smoked Chicken - Reserve Grand Champion
- Precooked Traditional Bratwurst - Grand Champion
- Smoked Cooked & Cured Specialty Bratwurst - Grand Champion
- Natural Casing Wieners - Reserve Champion
- Skinless Wieners - Reserve Champion
- Bacon - Reserve Grand Champion
- Smoked Kielbasa or Polish Sausage - Reserve Grand Champion
- Apricot Dijon Brats - Grand Champion?
back to top
Taken from the book Ian Jackman, "EAT THIS: 1,001 Things to Eat Before You Diet"
I was concerned about violating the list of brat dos and don'ts, so I called Nolechek's Meats in Thorp, Wisconsin, for some tips. This is a store that sells fresh and smoked bratwurst among numerous sausage products. (Nolechek's will also process the deer you shot for you.) Some of the brats sold here are taken to Packers games to be tailgated. Nolechek's said we could grill our brats, or parboil them and then brown them.
Taken from the book Food Finds "America's Best Local Foods and the People Who Produce Them" by Allison Engel and Margaret Engel
Nolechek's sliced bacon, fully cooked hams, and what could well be the state's official sausage - fresh brats - are just a few of their award-winning products. The makers use hardwood chips for smoking, not Liquid Smoke, and offer natural casings for wieners and other sausages. Their bacon is among their most popular items and can be ordered sliced or slab, from pork butt or belly, from beef or Canadian style. The regular sliced bacon has a straightforward, tantalizing smoked flavor, with a minimum of fat. Supermarket bacon is limp and fatty in comparison.
Smoked Polish sausage, plain or with garlic, is another standout, and can be ordered in a coarse or fine grind. It comes cooked, and is useful in quick skillet dinners. For many fans, the only way to serve it is grilled, with mustard.
Our favorite offering at Nolechek's is the summer sausage with garlic, a thick, finely ground chub of sausage that needs no embellishing condiments. There's no bitter aftertaste, or chemical flavors, that mar so many inferior summer sausages found in gift packs everywhere. The company also offers smoked pork spare ribs, which is unusual, as well as ring bologna. The family encourages customers to visit their web site and discover all they have to offer.
I have just placed another order with you. The previous order was wonderful and your service was great. We were searching for meats of our childhood. We have found them in your bologna for one. It is incredible. Now we are trying other items. Thanks again for an excellent job.
Gary and Barbara - Los Osos, CA
Yes, the Kishka was exactly as what we remembered it to be.... yours is a slight-tad-more spicy (peppery) than what our former supplier produced. Not that that's bad! Because both my Dad and I really enjoyed it. My wife, three teen-age daugthers and mother wouldn't come close to eating it... but that's their loss! :) (Also, it's not like I want to eat Kishka every day, you know).
You have gained several customers - at least three that I know of. Any orders you receive from northern Alabama or central Illinois may be related to me.
I will continue to order from you when this batch is gone (the sausage sample was enjoyed during a football game)... (some of the bacon sample is still in the fridge...) (that's probably the very best bacon I've had in my life).
I'm interested to try some of your jerky as well as some other sausages when I place my next order.
We got the box at 4:30 this afternoon, perfect timing! We cooked some of the Garlic Polish this evening and it was absolutely fantastic! The gentleman who delivered the box was surprised that it was still cool. Great packaging job! We are going to savor every bite of all the sausages, and we'll spread the word around about your business. Thanks again!
Pam & Jim - Ocean View, HI
So far, I've sampled everything but the all beef and coarse dogs. I got around to trying the meats this weekend, and they were even better than I expected. I don't think I would have taken a chance and ordered summer sausage with cheese and jalepeno pepper, but I'm glad you included it. I think it was the best tasting thing I've ever had!
Everything was great. Yesterday for breakfast, we had the bacon, and I've never had bacon that good. Bacon around here is ok with one decent brand, but yours is so much better. The franks were excellent. My favorite were the beef and pork with natural casing. Definitely higher quality than anything around here. I enjoyed the dogs with cheese, too. This was something I never had, and didn't know if I would like. My wife loves these also.
I notice that you put bacon in the dogs. It certainly adds to the taste. As I said, everything was great, better even than I expected. I assumed that I would like the franks, especially after reading about the awards. And they exceeded my expectations. But the bacon and summer sausage were so good, that I can't wait to try them again.
I will definitely be ordering some in the near future. I am a hot dog fanatic and was interested in trying yours, but after having the bacon and summer sausage, I'm hooked on them also. I will be telling the Star Ledger about your company and the many other people and message boards that I come in contact with. Again, thank you so much for your generosity and your wonderful meats. You have a customer for life.
John - Union, NJ
I just wanted to thank you for your exceptional customer service! You were amazingly responsive, and my mother received our gift in fantastic shape. Also, on a personal note, I only ordered enough for her to sample the Kishka. She hasn't been able to find any since moving to North Carolina, and yours was the Kishka she remembered from her childhood! You scored us plenty of brownie points with her! Thanks again, we look forward to plenty of business with you in the future, and so does she.
Patrick and Cassandra
I wanted to tell you that I ordered your brats for a family gathering in Cincinnati, Ohio, over the Labor Day Weekend! I told the gentleman that answered the phone that my sister and I were both born and raised in Sheboygan (my brother-in-law, too) and now live in Cincinnati and Savannah, Georgia, respectively. We have been very sad to see our favorite butcher shops give up on the bratwurst trade. . . I ordered another slew of brats online from a place called (...) and we did a side by side taste test! YOUR BRATS WERE AWESOME! The flavor jogged memories that I thought had long since passed!! You have an online customer for life!!! Keep up the great work and it's no wonder that you win all those awards!
I just received my order from you. I had family in Brillion, Wisconsin for many years, and my grandmother passed away last month. I used to get my meats from Rohrboern in Brillion, and they do a great job. I used their meats to get 2nd place (national) in sausage at the American Royal BBQ championship in Kansas City in 1998. Since I won't get back to Brillion with my family gone, I went searching for a place to find real Wisconsin meats, like I grew up with. I sampled your products today, and wow....I returned back to my roots. I will be using your sausages at the American Royal Open Barbecue Championship the first weekend in October. Look for my order coming in September (amongst many in between).
John Bates - Rockford, MI
Thank you so very much for the kishka! It came yesterday and I had some this morning. It was absolutely wonderful. My husband and I are drooling over your product list and will make an order very, very soon.
Djenkuje & Dick - Mt. Pleasant, SC
back to top