Wanting to get out of the house, because we spend WAY too much time there, the wife and I took a trip to Dallas to catch a baseball game and... Check out a local microbrewery. We found on the interwebs that Rahr brewing in Ft. Worth has an open house every Saturday from 1 to 3pm. They advertise a brewery tour and beer tasting.
We thought it would be like most brewery tour/tastings. A quick walk through a brief explanation of the brewing process and a small glass of beer.
NOT SO!! You walk in to the large warehouse, and pay the $5 admission fee. From there you are given tokens for three PINTS of beer, AND a glass pint glass. All of the types of beer that Rahr brews were available. On top of this, next to the taps were little glasses that you could sample the beer before you got one.
This little brewery was packed with people. It was AWESOME!! Rarely do you see people enjoying craft beer, but to see so many of them out on a hot day to have a few was just amazing. On top of all that, the beer was very good. The IPA was a little low on the IBU scale for my tastes, but still a good brew none the less.
Then came the brewery tour. An assistant brewer gave the tour, and gave us some history on the brewery.
It turns out the founder of Rahr brewing, Wilhelm Rahr, came from Germany to start a brewery. Since there was no place to buy malt from in Wisconsin 1847, Wilhelm Rahr started his own malting company.
Things were great, the Rahrs made beer and malt for many years. The malting company soon out paced the brewing company and the Rahrs were producing malted barley for many other breweries, including one in St. Louis... That is until the nanny state stepped in. January 29, 1919 the United States ratified the 18th amendment to the Constitution, baning all alcoholic beverages in the country.
This put a bullet in the head of Rahr brewing, and many other breweries all over the country. Malted barley however was still a needed commodity, and Rahr was well positioned to supply it. The company survived.
Fast forward to 2004 the great great grandson of Willhelm Rahr, Frederick William "Fritz" Rahr, Jr., opens Rahr brewing in Fort Worth, Texas. Fritz went to collage in Fort Worth and wanted to stick around. What better way than to do what you family used to do best? Make some beer!! Fritz buys all of his malt from his family's malt company so the Rahr product is unique in that it is almost wholly created by the Rahr family.
It was a great tour, and some good beer. What more could you want?