1917 – 1996


4 JFK St., Harvard Square


Traditional German fare




Located in the heart of Harvard Square, The Wursthaus was a popular gathering spot. It served sauerbraten and schnitzel, imported beers from around the world, and it's sensibility varied little in 79 years. Wursthaus was located next door to The Tasty in the now-demolished Read Block building. In 1942, the restaurant was bought by "the unofficial Mayor of Cambridge" Frank N. Cardullo, who went on to open Cardullo's Gourmet Shop across the street in 1950, still operating today. Notable patrons of Wursthaus included Harvard President Derek C. Bok, The Aga Khan, and Labor Secretary Robert B. Reich. The haus was bringing in more than $3 million a year in the mid-1980s, but the health-conscious, non-bratwurst eating masses of the '90s, along with the changing face of the square slowed business to a standstill. As of today (2010), a gastropub called the Russell House Tavern has opened in its spot, taking the name of the 19th century Harvard furniture dealer that once stood here.

Photo courtesy of the Cambridge Historical Commission