Milwaukee sausage icon closing shop

Posted at 7:12 PM, Sep 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-09 20:22:44-04

European Homemade Sausage isn't just a local market. For generations of families, it's a tradition they're sad to see go.

"The food is good because they pay attention to what they do to it," said Mary Ann Johnson, a long-time customer.

The shop was filled Friday with people stocking up and saying goodbye. Saturday at 4:00 p.m. the doors close for good.

"I did what I could," said owner Frank Jakubczak. "I think that's enough," he said.

Now approaching 80 years of age, Jakubczak still hauls links and fills trays inside the store he took over in 1973.

"It was my dream to have my own business," he said.

It's a dream that's spanned generations.

"My grandparents first started coming here with my aunts and uncles and stuff and then we started coming and now I'm starting to bring, you know, our little one," said Nathaniel Gorski, a lifelong customer.

Jennifer Czysz and her husband grew up in the neighborhood.

"Pretty much all our lives we've been coming here," she said.

Tradition draws the customers back time and time again. It brought Jakubczak back, once, too. He first retired about 7 years ago. Jakubczak said he closed in December. By Easter he was reopen.

"I missed my customers, I missed to be with people. I have a lot to think about running the business," he said.

Now, Jakubczak and his customers hope the posted For Sale sign will bring interest from someone who will keep his legacy going.

"If I sell everything and somebody wants the recipe, I will be willing to [share]," he said.