In the 19th century, Cincinnati was one of the nation’s biggest producers and consumers of beer. In 1840, there were eight breweries in town. Within 20 years there were 36 breweries all along the canal in the West End and Over-the-Rhine.
Times have since changed. Cincinnati has seemed to fall off the beer map, being replaced by cities such as Boulder.
Greg Hardman, president and chief executive of the Christian Moerlein Brewing Co. has big plans for reviving Cincinnati’s beer industry. Hardman purchased Morlein, the 1853 Cincinnati beer label, in 2004 and has been steadily growing sales in the region.
Until now, Morlein has only been offered around the Cincinnati area. This summer, Harman plans to begin the first phase of a national expansion by rolling out his handful of beer brands to Indianapolis, Columbus and Louisville.
On top of the three city expansion, Hartman will also be releasing his new Lager House Original Golden Helles, a remake of the classic Moerlein lager. The beer will make its first public debut at the Beer Barons Weekend at the Muhlhauser Barn in West Chester next Saturday, May 17th.
Though brewed in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., by contract, the Moerlein family of products will soon be sold across the Midwest. The company will begin offering a Discovery Pack – a 12-pack of samples of Moerlein brands. Hardman hopes eventually to extend the beer’s reach nationally.
The Beer Wench has not yet had an opportunity to taste this beer and it looking forward to having another “local-ish” option available in the city of Columbus!!! Keep your eyes out for the Discovery Pack!!!
About Christian Moerlein
Christian Moerlein Beers follow traditional German styles that reflect the Bavarian heritage of our founder, Christian Moerlein. Moerlein was an accomplished blacksmith who grew up in a family of brewers before sailing to America in 1841. Christian’s love for brewing hearty, European beers was an idea fermenting in his mind. In 1853, his attention changed from horseshoes and wagon wheels to barley and hops. Christian’s craftsmanship became focused on brewing beer in the back of his workshop, one fine batch at a time. He began brewing European style beers according to old family recipes. Cincinnati grew thirsty for his beers and he established one of the most successful pre-Prohibition breweries in the nation, The Christian Moerlein Brewing Company of Cincinnati, Ohio.
History of the Brewery
After opening the brewery in 1853, Christian soon found his beers were awarded the highest honors wherever they were exhibited. Not only in high demand in Cincinnati, they were commonly exported to Europe and South America.Unfortunately, the brewery was not able to survive a dark period of America’s history: Prohibition. Honor was restored to Christian in 1981 when his brand was reintroduced to Greater Cincinnati. The updated all-malt Christian Moerlein beer was on the leading edge of the craft beer movement, coming along at a time when the term “microbrew” was not a part of American vocabulary. From the first keg tapped by Christian, to ice cold Select Lager, Select Dunkel, and our seasonal beers enjoyed throughout the world, Christian Moerlein beers continue to follow the strict Reinheitsgebot Bavarian Purity Law of 1516. True to the law since Christian was the brew master, the beer only contains four ingredients: malted barley, hops, water and yeast.