Sunday’s ad is for Geraer Schwarzbier, from the 1930s. From the late 1800s until the 1980s, poster art really came into its own, and in Europe a lot of really cool posters, many of them for breweries, were produced. I’ve been posting vintage European posters all last year, and will continue to do so in 2020. This poster was for Riebeck-Brauerei Gera of what today is Leipzig, Germany. I’m not sure who created the poster, but I love that it’s “Ärztlich Empfohlen,” which means “medically recommended.”
Archives for February 2, 2020
Today is the birthday of Anton Schwarz (February 2, 1839-September 24, 1895). In addition to having studied law, he also became a chemist and worked for several breweries in Budapest, before moving to the U.S. in 1868. Moving to New York, he got a job working for the magazine/journal American Brewer, which at the time was more like the People magazine of the brewing industry. He was quickly promoted to editor, eventually buying the publication. He turned it into a serious scientific journal, writing many of the articles himself, but is credited with helping the entire industry improve its standards and processes.
Here’s his entry from the Jewish Encyclopedia, published in 1906.
Austrian chemist; born at Polna, Bohemia, Feb. 2, 1839; died at New York city Sept. 24, 1895. He was educated at the University of Vienna, where he studied law for two years, and at the Polytechnicum, Prague, where he studied chemistry. Graduating in 1861, he went to Budapest, and was there employed at several breweries. In 1868 he emigrated to the United States and settled in New York city. The following year he was employed on “Der Amerikanische Bierbrauer” (“The American Brewer”) and soon afterward became its editor. A few years later he bought the publication, remaining its editor until his death. He did much to improve the processes of brewing in the United States, and in 1880 founded in New York city the Brewers’ Academy of the United States.
Schwarz’s eldest son, Max Schwarz (b. in Budapest July 29, 1863; d. in New York city Feb. 7, 1901), succeeded him as editor of “The American Brewer” and principal of the Brewers’ Academy. He studied at the universities of Erlangen and Breslau and at the Polytechnic High School at Dresden. In 1880 he followed his father to the United States and became associated with him in many of his undertakings.
Both as editor and as principal of the academy he was very successful. Many of the essays in “The American Brewer,” especially those on chemistry, were written by him. He was a great advocate of the “pure beer” question in America.
When the United States Brewers’ Academy celebrated its 25th anniversary, in 1913, there was a ball where several alumni gave speeches and toasts, mentioning Schwarz’ contributions, including this from Gallus Thomann from Germany:
He also co-wrote the Theory and Practice of the Preparation of Malt and the Fabrication of Beer
Beer Advocate also has a nice story of Schwarz, entitled the O.G. Beer Geek.
Today is also the 49th birthday of Luke Nicholas, founder/brewer of Epic Brewing in New Zealand. Luke brewed for many years in New Zealand before striking out on his own, and also lived in the States for a spell working for RealBeer.com and became fond of hoppy beers. As a result, his beers are some of the hoppiest in New Zealand. He also started a real beer website just for New Zealand, RealBeer.co.nz and was instrumental in starting a Brewers Guild of NZ. Luke was kind enough to show me around the beer scene in Auckland when I was there with my family a few years ago, and we run into one another at beer events surprisingly often. He’s a great beer ambassador not just for his native country, but for great beer everywhere. You can also read about his exploits online at Luke’s Beer. Join me in wishing Luke a very happy birthday.
Over in Gobbler’s Knob, in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, Phil the Groundhog — a.k.a. the Brewhog — raised up his head this morning and looked around, and this year did not see his shadow. You know what that means? It means an early spring, and earlier spring bock for us. You can see a video of Punxsutawney Phil here. And there’s more information about Groundhog Day from the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club.
Here’s a new report of this year’s prediction in Punxsutawney.
And here’s a report on it from Time:
Pennsylvania’s most famous groundhog on Sunday declared: “Spring will be early, it’s a certainty.”
At sunrise on Groundhog Day, members of Punxsutawney Phil’s top hat-wearing inner circle revealed the cuddly oracle’s prediction — his 134th, according to the Pennsylvania Tourism Office.
Awoken by the crowd’s chants of “Phil!” the groundhog was hoisted in the air for the assembly to hail before making his decision. He then grasped the glove of a handler as a member of his inner circle announced that spring would come early this year.
The annual event has its origin in a German legend that says if a furry rodent casts a shadow on Feb. 2, winter continues. If not, spring comes early.
And if you don’t have time to watch all of the deliciously wonderful Groundhog Day film today, here it is in a slightly shorter version just over three minutes.
Today is the birthday of Frank Senn (February 2, 1838-November 8, 1913) who was born in Mechtersheim, Germany, which today is known as Römerberg, but settled in St. Louis, Missouri with his parents in 1853. In Louisville, Kentucky, he opened the Frank Seen Brewery in 1874, but later sold it to his two brothers. In 1877, he took with a partner, Philip Ackermann, he opened a new brewery, the Frank Senn & Philip Ackermann Brewery. In 1892, they shortened it to the Senn & Ackermann Brewing Co., which it remained until being closed by prohibition.
Here’s a short bio, from his obituary, printed in the Western Brewer and Journal for July to December 1913.
Here’s a short history of the brewery, from the Encyclopedia of Louisville:
And another one from Germans in Louisville: A History:
After prohibition began, the building was abandoned, eventually becoming a scrapyard.
Today is the 48th birthday of Jamie Floyd, co-owner/brewer of Ninkasi Brewing in Eugene, Oregon. Jamie has been a fixture in the Oregon brewing scene for many years, having brewed at Steelhead Brewing, also in Eugene, before opening Ninkasi with Nikos Ridge in 2006. Join me in wishing Jamie a very happy birthday.