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Nueske's Cherrywood Smoked Bacon: With the lake in the background

As we packed up the family truckster, I thought that our first family vacation to Northern Wisconsin (as in the first time that the 3 of us went away by ourselves) would be filled with adventures. The porkiest of our adventures so far has been the stop at Nueske’s Bacon in Wittenberg, WI.

Wittenberg is not far from Wausau and is only about 75 minutes from my hometown. As we approached Wittenberg on a country road, we saw a billboard that read “Nueske’s: Making Vegetarians Jealous since 1933” and when we opened the doors, we were blasted with plumes of bacon smoke.

Nueske's: We've Arrived in Wittenberg

As we’d be away from home for a week, the bounty was limited, but the keystone was the Cherrywood Bacon. My wife is currently limiting her nitrate intake, so the Cherrywood Bacon, which is made nitrate free (it is listed as uncured, but it is cured with the salt and sugar, just not the nitrate), was a boon for her. After a few days of staring at it in the fridge, we broke it out.

The Nueske's Store

One of my favorite parts of stopping at Nueske’s was getting bacon from the butcher counter instead of the retail friendly packaging. It reminded me that all of the great articles and hype does not take away from the fact that this is a butcher who makes great bacon and not some magical bacon machine. There are plenty of items in the cases that aren’t available in Chicago, so look out for some more information on that later.

Nueske's: In Packaging

Unlike the retail Nueske’s that I have picked up, not every piece was a carbon copy of the other. I like that, the week in the woods needs a little less uniformity. The great Nueske taste is there in spades. There are no ill effects of the lack of nitrate and there is a slight sweetness that I am attributing to the cherry wood smoke. This is a bacon, that while isn’t quite at the level of the original, I prefer it to the peppered bacon also from Nueske’s

No nitrates, but still gorgeous

Four and a half rashers