Everything you wanted to know about beer in Detroit (video)

Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014

If you love Detroit, history and beer, watch the video below.

On Jan. 30, the Detroit Drunken Historical Society and Wayne State University Press invited John W. Stroh III (CEO of The Stroh Companies, Inc. -- as in Stroh's beer) to lead us through the rich history of Detroit brewing with Detroit liquor historian James W. Tottis. The event, which was packed, took place, fittingly, at the Dakota Inn Rathskeller. Karl Kurz opened Detroit’s only authentic German bar on Aug. 1, 1933, the grandfather of Karl E. Kurz, the current owner.

Here's a taste: Yes, we make cars. But we also make beer. Back in the 1830s, Detroit had a large-scale beer and brewing culture thanks to the Stroh Brewery. It opened in Detroit way back in the 1830s and operated until 1985. While the Stroh Brewery was the largest in Detroit, dozens of others opened in the metro area adding to Detroit's, rich, hoppy beer brewing history. The large scale brewing operation of the turn of the century doesn't exist anymore in the city but we have definitely seen a bit of a revival in microbrewers throughout our metro area.

So, if you missed the event, watch the whole thing here:

HUGE thanks to Matthew Winne for filming the event.

Also, FYI: Wayne State University Press published Brewed in Detroit: Breweries and Beers since 1830 (1999) by Peter H. Blum, the only comprehensive history of the brewing industry in the Detroit metropolitan area. More info here.