Guest article: this article is adapted from the Berlin Journal.
Germans know very well the taste of a Berliner Currywurst, but what if you are faced epic spice experience that is Curry & Chili?
Ever wonder why you could find men weeping on the streets of Berlin, each with a paper plate in hand? It may be possible that “Curry & Chili” takeout by Frank Spieß on the Osloer Straße corner on Prinzenallee in Berlin-Wedding is to blame.
Ten years ago, Frank Spieß founded his famous hotspot and in Magdeburg in 2012, Curry & Chilli won the title of “Germany’s Spiciest Takeout”. Today, Curry & Chili continues to bring hellishly hot curry sausages for those who have the courage to test their taste tolerance.
Spieß’s spot features 10 levels of spice severity. The first is described as „fruchtig“ (“fruity”), but you can also find ones on the menu with the level of zero. Spiciness is measured on the Scoville scale, which refers to the level in which the sauce must be diluted to be neutralized to humans and not cause any pain due to the heat. A Spiciness Level 1 in Curry & Chili has a 10,000 rating on the Scoville scale. For comparison, Tabasco has up to 5,000 heat units and commercially available pepper spray up to 2 million.
But the difference between Tabasco and sauces a la Spieß, (a sauce for sausage costs 30 cents) is worlds apart. At the top of Spieß’s spicy throne is a pitch-black bottle filled with the maximum Spiciness Level 10. It has a maximum 7.7 million Scoville and is known to bring grown men to tears.
“However, one should be cautious with these levels. Shortness of breath, nausea and sweating are part of my everyday guest’s experiences. If it doesn’t go away, then the finger goes in the throat and out with it!” says Spieß. His guests describe the intense pain on their tongue like being stuck with a staple, accompanied by an eerie burning in the stomach.
His visitors don’t only come from Wedding, either. Courageous foodies come from other districts or even countries such as Poland and Austria to have a chance to taste some of Spieß’s hottest sauces. And his club, The Curry & Chili Club, “the hottest club in the world” already boasts an impressive 245 members.
Want to test your spice tolerance at Chili & Curry?
Monday-Friday: 9:30 to 21:00
Saturday: 11:00 to 19:00
Sunday: 13:00 to 18:00
Closed on holidays.
For a little background information, the German Currywurst is one of the most popular fast food dishes. More than 2,000 locations nationwide focus on the delicious delicacy.
But who invented the currywurst?
This argument continues today between the Hanseatic City of Hamburg and the German capital of Berlin.
In Berlin, credit is given to Herta Heuwer, who is even known as the “Mother of Currywurst” on a Google search!
The Hamburg write Uwe Timm claims in his 1993 novel “The Discovery of Curried Sausage” that the acknowledgement clearly lies with the Hanseatic city.
Regardless of origin, the spiciest currywurst definitely comes from Frank Spieß in Wedding. His motto? “Here, men weep”.