Selling currywurst to hungry Brits and tourists in central London has been a recipe of success for Florian Frey and Giuseppe 'Peppe' Gazzana, whose Herman Ze German restaurant business is fast becoming one of the capital's top destinations for quick, but tasty German cuisine. And with their Soho premises due to feature in a forthcoming Cool Cities London coffee-table book, their dream to become the 'Sausage Kings of Old Compton Street' could very soon become a reality...
The two motorcycle and scooter fans have come a long way from the humble beginnings of supplying their beloved German sausages to their local pub in Brighton. A chance encounter with the organiser of a music festival (who had eaten the sausages at the pub) saw them borrow the funds to buy a catering van to travel around the UK's live music circuit selling currywurst and bratwurst to hungry festivalgoers.
Buoyed by their early success, they took a gamble and opened their first London premises just off The Strand in 2010, showing a welcome sense of humour and selfdepreciation by calling it 'Herman ze German'. Three years later, in September 2013, the Old Compton Street store was added, bringing the sizzling sounds, smells and tastes of authentic German sausages to the fashionable Soho crowd. And now the finishing touches are being applied to the third premises in their portfolio – this time in Charlotte Street in London's Fitzrovia district, due to open later this summer.
With a keen interest in sustainability and an eye for an opportunity, Peppe and Florian are planning a delivery service for the three diners and would like it to be one that doesn't add to the considerable pollution central London suffers due to emissions from the cars, taxis and buses used by the eight million inhabitants zigzagging across this heaving metropolis. Hence, the BMW C evolution e-scooter has caught their interest, as Peppe confirms.
“We've been so busy building up the business that there hasn't been any time to ride for pleasure but I'm very interested in the BMW C evolution e-scooter because of its possibilities in central London,” he says. “I've heard about its fast acceleration, long battery life and quick recharge times, so with a range of around 100 kilometres, it would be the perfect zero-emissions delivery vehicle. It's a great talking point too, because of its sustainable technology and cool looks. I can imagine that a special C evolution painted with 'Herman ze German' branding would be perfect mobile advertising for us and bring in even more business.”
Expect business to boom even further once Herman ze German's Soho diner appears in the latest Cool Cities London coffee-table book. Cool Cities are a new generation of multimedia travel guides and apps featuring the hippest, most fashionable hotels, shops, dining spots, galleries and more in cities across Europe and the USA. Aimed at cosmopolitan travellers, the guides and accompanying apps allow users to discover their chosen cities with reviews, photos, videos and even interactive tours of selected locations.
Herman ze German will feature in the coffee-table book, due to be printed in October this year. The quality publication is expected to appeal to Londoners who are proud of their city and its offerings, as well as anyone from around the world who has made this thriving UK capital their home. Published by Teneues (which also produced the commemorative 90 Years BMW Motorrad book that is currently being updated) this Cool Cities London book will run to a substantial 220 pages, and will be approximately 25 x 32cm in size, with around 250 colour photographs. It will be available for purchase at various retailers worldwide and can be pre-ordered now at www.teneues.com/shop-uk/books/neue-products/cool-cities-london.html
For more info on Herman Ze German, visit www.facebook.com/hermanzegerman or www.twitter.com/hermanfeeds. Alternatively, pop in and see them when you're next in London for some currywurst, bratwurst, bockwurst or lebekase. And keep a look out for a HzG-branded C evolution silently zipping about town.