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Brewing tradition

Pilsen - the capital of beer

Pilsen and beer. These two expressions are inseparable. After all, the tradition of brewing in Pilsen began with the founding of the city in 1295, when King Wenceslas II granted brewing rights to 260 burghers’ houses in the town. This hereditary privilege, financially very profitable, authorized the holder to sell beer in his own house. But the quality of beer, though brewed in Pilsen for centuries, varied greatly.

It often happened that beer was undrinkable. And so aldermen of the City Council began to check the quality of beer. Beer tests were always held in a mázhaus where the beer was brewed. Oak benches were brought here and the town magistrate poured a pitcher of beer. As soon as the beer settled on the bench, the aldermen sat on the bench. When they stood up after about an hour, their leather trousers had to be glued to the bench. If not, the beer‘s quality was not recognized and the burgher could not sell it.

In 1838, 36 bad barrels of beer, which were considered harmful to the health, had to be thrown out in front of the town hall. The incident was the impetus for several dozen enterprising brewers to build a common brewery. This new brewery was originally designed for the production of so-called Bavarian beer, and was produced by the Bavarian brewer Josef Groll, a man with an excellent reputation for brewing. The first batch of beer was brewed from domestic raw materials and soft Pilsen water in 1842. The new lager had a great colour and flavour and brewers soon began to deliver it to Prague. From there it spread to Europe and eventually around the world.

Pilsen - the capital of beer