Page 3 - GC-apr-may-2018
P. 3
For 140 years Genesee Brewery quenches NYers’ thirst

This year the Genesee Brewery GREGORY see a household name from Bata- In the first years of the retaining their brand. With this
is celebrating its 140th birth- WITUL via to Utica. 1880s more brands were move, Mathias was no longer the
day. To mark this momentous oc- introduced a dark Bavarian president of Genesee, but was
casion the brewery is re-releasing Street location would go on to be- While the first half of the beer and the Liebotschaner, made a director of Bartholomay.
many of the historic beers they come home to the Rauber & Mey- 1880s was good for the Genesee, which made Genesee a
have made over the years, includ- ers Brewery from the 1860s to 1885 would be a rough year. On As part of Bartholomay, Gene-
ing the one that first made them 1872, then the Jacob Rauber the afternoon of Feb. 11 smoke household name see continued to produce its lager,
famous, the German Liebotschan- Brewery in 1873 then the Reisky began billowing from the hop from Batavia to Utica. bock, and liebotschaner beers and
er. & Spies Brewery from 1874 to room. A clerk dashed to the fire under new management experi-
1878, when Mathias bought it out. box at the corner of St. Paul and estimating its value at $125,000 of mental brews were tried, produc-
When Mathias Kondolf incor- Ward, but in the five minutes it which only $55,000 was insured. ing the Old Stratford Ale and later
porated the Genesee Brewing Capitalized with $100,000 took the runner to get there, the a more refined liebotschaner. As
Company in May of 1878, the President Kondolf, along with fire had spread to the ice house. As Instead of cutting their losses the brewery chugged on through
German-born immigrant was al- Vice President J. G. Wagner, Sec- the teams of horses, equipment, and walking away, Mathias and the 1890s into the new century
ready a well-known personality in retary Jacob Spahn, and Treasurer and firemen arrived every window the other members of the compa- Kondolf left Genesee and was re-
Rochester. By that time, Kondolf M. Brayer over saw the upgrading on the south side of the building ny’s board immediately began placed by John Bradley. Mathias
had received a Catholic education and improvement of the site. After was filled with flames. planning for the Genesee’s new would go on to start the Moerlbach
at St. Peter and Paul’s school, establishing water rights, hiring a brewery. By working nonstop for Brewing Company before he
worked in his father’s brewery, staff, and setting up a distribution Fire fuels future growth three months the new building was passed away in 1912.
formed and sold a barrel-making network the Genesee Brewery re- For 15 minutes the men battled up and running by May 1 of 1885.
business, was an originator of the leased its first lager beer in late the blaze, but when fire burst Shortly thereafter beer began In 1919 the 18th Amendment
Rochester German Insurance 1878. The beer proved to be a big through the front of the building flowing out of North St. Paul to the United States Constitution
Company, and had served on the hit in Rochester, and word of the chief knew that all hope of Street again and spread across was ratified and national Prohibi-
board of the German-American Genesee’s quality spread. In May saving the structure was lost. Sixty New York State. tion would begin in 1920. Like
Bank of Rochester. Now at age 42 of the next year the brewery re- minutes later all the floors col- hundreds and hundreds of other
he would return to his first love of leased its first Bock beer, which lapsed upon themselves but the In 1889 a group of British in- brewers across the U.S., Genesee
brewing by securing the building achieved even greater acclaim than fire still raged for hours. With his vestors took an interest in the closed its doors. There was a plan
at 111 North St. Paul St. the lager. In the first years of the brewery still smoking Kondolf de- brewing industry of Rochester. to convert the building into an oil
1880s more brands were intro- clared the structure a total loss, Seeing it as a secure investment refinery, a cigar manufacturer, or
With the purchase of the St. duced a dark Bavarian beer and the these Englishmen purchased the ice cream plant, but in the end it
Paul Street address, Kondolf was Liebotschaner, which made Gene- Bartholomay Brewery, the Roch- was just abandoned.
starting the next chapter on a loca- ester Brewery, and the Genesee
tion that had already served as a Brewery, nesting them all under The New Genesee
brewery for over 20 years. Built control of the Bartholomay Brew- Louis A. Wehle, a Rochester
around 1857 as part of the Charles ing Company, but with each still native, former brew master at
Rau’s Brewery, the North St. Paul
continued on page 5

April - May 2018 • •3
   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8