Meet Charles Wekselbaum, the founder and head salami maker of Charlito's Cocina, a made-by-hand, artisan charcuterie business based in Long Island City, Queens. Charles, or Charlito (as he's affectionately known), is a master charcutier. He is one of three USDA approved salami makers in New York City. Yet, believe it or not, his business launched in the summer of 2011 with an entirely meatless product: the fig salami, an artisan product loved by vegans and meat lovers alike. The fig salami was invented out of necessity. Even though Charlito spent years perfecting the art of preserving meats, New York City made it difficult for him to legally start his meat production. So, instead of giving up, he improvised. By using the same principals he applied to meat, Charlito began making a meatless charcuterie product, re-shaping figs to look like salami. It was a first, and like most first times, a lot of booze helps. Enjoy his fun story! To try Charlito's fig salami you can visit his stand at Smorgasburg, or check out his website to see all specialty shops and markets that carry his products. Thanks so much for watching food. curated.! Happy Eating! Check out more videos: @SkeeterNYC on Twittermoreless
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