Category: Beer History

Vintage Beer Ads: Thanksgiving

Vintage Beer Ads: Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving is a holiday riddled with folklore, and advertisers are never weary of playing fast and loose with the facts. When it comes to beer, it's even more laughable at times. But, vintage beer ads and commercials are filled with history; the ads provide insight into the culture of the era when the ads were published. Sometimes, the ads show some dark parts of America's history, other times it's just fun. For sure, it's informative; we can easily explore American history through beer and advertising.   Happy Thanksgiving...

A State of Growth - An Illinois Beer Story, by Illinois Craft Brewers Guild

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Chicago and Illinois brewing has exploded, notably since 2011. It’s a story of supporting local businesses, community, and a love of very great beer. The stories in this video are from breweries of all sizes and types – most of which started small and have found success. The Illinois Craft Brewers Guild has produced videos... Read more »

What craft beer would famous historical Chicagoans drink?

What craft beer would famous historical Chicagoans drink?
Chicago has been around, well, since before Europeans arrived. But, in the more modern sense, it’s been around since 1837. The modern craft beer movement is even newer; it has only been around since the late 1980s in Chicago craft beer didn’t truly become popular until 2010. Think of all the famous Chicagoans who were... Read more »
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Bell's & Founders Tap Takeovers: The legacy of the Michigan-Chicago craft community

Bell's & Founders Tap Takeovers: The legacy of the Michigan-Chicago craft community
The genesis of Michigan’s modern craft-brewing boom occurred well before it arrived in Chicago, which largely got going in the last ten, if not five years. In the middle to late 1990s, Goose Island existed as one of the few breweries in Chicago who were brewing something a little different…and they remained pretty lonely for quite a while.... Read more »

Atlas Brewing Company: An Interview with Ben Saller (and More)

Atlas Brewing Company: An Interview with Ben Saller (and More)
Beer. Bowling. Dinosaurs. and a historic Chicago building. These are what make Atlas Brewing a unique player within the Chicago’s craft-brewing game. Well, that and the fact they make some fantastic brews! Recently, I did an article for Chilled Magazine regarding breweries resurrecting historic buildings, thus re-purposing them for the use as breweries or for the... Read more »

Chicago's Role in American Beer History: Germans, a Lake, a Fire, and a Fair

Chicago's Role in American Beer History: Germans, a Lake, a Fire, and a Fair
The following is an excerpt from my personal beer research and a paper titled, “A Pint of Liberty.” The work is still ongoing, but this excerpt is nearly a finished product. A few of these items are taken from historian Maureen Ogle’s “Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer.”   The multitude of German immigrants arriving... Read more »
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Turning Craft Beer into a Chicago Beer

Turning Craft Beer into a Chicago Beer
Chicago is a town that is known for two things, traditionally, when it come to beer — Old Style and Budweiser.  The former is represented by the countless corner taverns adorned with a hanging Old Style sign. Meanwhile, Budweiser, and now it’s subsidiary Goose Island, are a big part of Cubs’ baseball lore, especially since... Read more »

Frühshoppen - Brunch and Bier, German Style!

Frühshoppen - Brunch and Bier, German Style!
Chicago’s German-American influence enjoys a long and rich history. As we near September, an influx of Oktoberfest celebrations will arise — and Oktoberfest brews, I might add. And, with that, a plethora of sausages, pretzels, and beer will be consumed as oom-pa-pa music plays in the background.  Not that sausages and beer aren’t common year-round... Read more »

Beer History: TV, Supermarkets, and the Decline of 20th Century Breweries.

Beer History: TV, Supermarkets, and the Decline of 20th Century Breweries.
The number of breweries declined in the first half of the 20th century faster than you can say the word “chug.” The number was already on the way down at the turn of the century, but Prohibition and WWII accelerated that decline. The end of the war arrived with a boom in the economy, but... Read more »
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Native Americans in Beer Advertising - a Look at Beer History

From time to time, I like to throw a little history your way.  Most of what you read regarding the history  of beer culture is about as valuable as your Uncle Charlie espousing his theory on how to fix the national debt, handle ISIS, or turn the Bears into a dynasty. Roll your eyes and... Read more »