Historical German Breweries of Albany

Tour curated by: Gina Breihof

When German immigrants moved into Albany they brought with them their rich culture. German immigration, for the majority, occurred from 1710-1770. As they were all getting settled, and used to living in New York, more specifically Albany, it just happened to be the time of the New York Temperance Society (around April, 1829) What this meant for New York was that the sale of alcoholic beverages started to be frowned upon. Anglo-Americans stood for the temperance and tried to “Americanize” immigrants. Because beer, celebration, bands, dance halls, etc. were part of German culture, there was a huge contrast between the German neighborhoods and the anglo-Americans in Albany. The German-Americans opposed the laws concerning the banning of alcohol The Germans were much younger and accepting of alcohol and most of their major holidays, like Christmas and Easter, revolved around the happiness of being together as a family and drinking beer and dancing. With this being said, of course a keg of beer accompanied most events that Germans held. They even referred to beer as “healthy and refreshing”. Along with the German’s love of beer, came with it German Breweries to the Albany region. This tour brings you through a historical past on how German beer was brought to Albany, and how three breweries survived prohibition.

Locations for Tour

The first German Brewery that opened up in Albany was brought to life by a man named John F. Hendrick. He started his own German Bier brewery in 1852, which was located at 426-430 Central Avenue, Albany, New York. When Fredrick decided to name his…

A Prussian man by the name of Frederick Hinckel and a man from Bavaria named Johann Andreas Schinnerer came together in 1852 and started their own brewery. For those who aren’t sure of what exactly Prussia is, Oxford Dictionary defines Prussia as…

Dobler Brewing Co. opened in 1865 on Myrtle Avenue around the corner from the Park Ave./South Swan St. intersection in Albany New York. Dobler Brewing Company is also pretty important because it was one of the three breweries that outlasted the…

The second to last stop on the tour is here at Beverwyck Brewing Company, This is the only non-German brewery included in this tour. The reason for it being included is because it is the third of the three breweries that outlasted the prohibition of…

This tour concludes here, at the only authentic German Biergarten currently located in Albany, Wolff’s Biergarten. According to their website, they “specialize in 3 things at Wolff’s: bier (The finest German, Belgian and Czech biers), wurst…