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Artisans' Quarter

 


This small quarter of the Free City is one of the most peaceful, lacking the wild taverns and crowds of most other districts. The Artisans' Quarter is home to hardworking people and their families. Its major features are the guildhalls for many of those craftsmen and women.

Sure, the Artisans' Quarter has its share of taverns, but these are quiet, neighborhood places. Most of the customers recognize each other and the proprietor--who is usually the owner. Strangers are treated cordially, but any unruliness arouses the resentment of the entire establishment. The City Watch, while not a great presence here, is not neglectful.

The houses here are small. At first glance one might think they are crowded uncomfortably close together. Upon closer examination, the buildings all seem to fit snugly together, while leaving a surprising amount of space between them.

With its convenient location next to the Low Marketplace, the residents of this quarter rarely have to go elsewhere in the city for their needs. More than any other district, the Artisans' Quarter seems a self-sufficient community all unto itself.

The hallmarks of each tradesperson can be seen on the front of the house: an ornately carved balcony and railing for the woodcarver, a wide, sweeping stairway for the carpenter, an imposing facade of granite for the stonemason, and so on. Weavers, painters, metalsmiths, and the like use an example of their craft to decorate the front of the house--a tapestry, unusual color scheme, or metal rack of tools, for example.

While some of these artisans work for employers and travel to a different location for their job, the majority work in shops within their homes. Consequently, a great number of different businesses can be found in the tiny Artisans' Quarter.

 

Artisans' Quarter Businesses

Shipper and Haulers, Brewers, Leatherworkers, Weavers, Tailors, Metalsmiths, Jewelers, Gemcutters, Furniture Makers, Carpenters, Stonemasons, Architects, and Taverns with food

 

The Fat of the Hog

 

This friendly neighborhood bar is famous for the variety of its pork menu. Waldo Parstiche (commonly known as "Wide Waldo" NPC), the honorable proprietor, considers it a personal insult if a quest refuses to try whatever delicacy is the special of the day.

The tavern is small, with a dozen tables and twice as many seats at the bar. Open from noon until midnight, it always seems to be crowded. The prices are very reasonable and the portions more than ample.

Waldo's brother, Ernest, is lord of a manor a day's ride west of the Free City. Ernest Parstiche (NPC) has focused the attention of the farmers around his holdings into hog breeding. These hogs are regularly herded to the Free City slaughterhouse, which gives both brothers a sizable discount because of the volume of their business.

Waldo's specialties include pork ribs simmered in a spicy pepper sauce, then grilled. All but the most hardened diners must immediately wash down each bite with a mug of chilled ale, for the scalding heat of the pepper sauce is unequaled by any other public dish in the Free City.

However, Waldo also offers roasts, bacon-wrapped delicacies, pungent smoked hams, and his own invention, lard soup. Most of his menu is delightfully sumptuous, and even the latter item is edible.

 

Fruit of the Mill

 

This delightful little shop offers wine and ale for sale, together with a variety of pastries salty, sweet, or meaty. It caters to workers especially.

The proprietor is Karin Keoffel (NPC), a petite woman who has originated most of her own recipes. She hires several young women as barmaids and cooking help.

The eatery is open from dawn until an hour after dark. Meals are good and filling, with a variety of pastry for every taste. Specialties include cheese and tomato pastries, all manner of fruit pies, beef and lamb wrapped in crusty rolls, and many others.

Karin employs no bouncer, nor any brawny help, but she and her maidens are favorites of the workers hereabouts. Any rude comments from customers are greeted with stern rebukes from these regulars. Those who persist in the disturbance find themselves facing 6-12 large, angry men.


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