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Heurich’s Lager Party Features Beer Not Seen for 60 Years

Beer enthusiasts have a chance to taste history tonight at the Heurich House Museum.

At 7 p.m., the museum will host a ticketed Heurich’s Lager release party. The public is invited to toast with them, DC Brau and homebrewers Mike Stein, Pete Jones and Joshua Hubner, who created Heurich’s Lager. This is a historical re-creation of a pre-Prohibition beer from the iconic Heurich Brewing Co. Guests will be the first to taste Heurich’s Lager in at least 60 years.

The project is part of Heurich House Museum’s continuing efforts to honor the legacy of longtime D.C. brewer Christian Heurich, to preserve and maintain his historic home, and to promote local Washington, D.C., history and culture. Every third Thursday throughout the year, the museum hosts monthly local craft beer tastings and beer-centric house tours called History & Hops. Other programs presented this summer include free outdoor movies, local music concerts and public house tours.

Heurich House Museum, nestled off a busy street in Dupont Circle, is a snapshot into the Victorian era of Washington, D.C.

On the outside it looks like a well-preserved castle, but inside during the first half of the 20th century, it was the home of Christian Heurich Sr., the most successful brewer in Washington, D.C., at the time.

Heurich immigrated from Germany in 1866, living with his sister and her husband. In three years, Heurich had worked in several breweries and had seen several major cities in the eastern half of the country. By September 1872, he had partnered with another brewmaster named Paul Ritter. They went into business together and a month later began producing two beers, Senate, a light lager, and Maerzen, “a full bodied” dark brew. According to beer historians at Rusty Cans, Senate lager (along with Senate ale and Senate bock) had been Heurich’s main product line before and after Prohibition.


Heurich never made a brew called Congress because by June 1905, Haberle Congress Brewing Co. of Syracuse, N.Y., already had a popular ale by that name.

Heurich eventually bought out his partner and began running the business by himself. As the world’s oldest brewer, he ran the Christian Heurich Brewing Co. until his death at 102, in 1945.