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Schwechater Beer

The history of the Schwechater beer started in the year 1632. Peter Descrolier, who was valet and paymaster of archduke Matthias, founded the brewery in Schwechat. But the real success story only began in 1760, when the waiter Franz Anton Dreher moved to Vienna and leased the brewery Ober-Lanzendorf. In 1796 he bought the brewery in Schwechat, and the Schwechater beer was ready to start its triumphant advance.


The next milestone of the success story followed in 1841. Anton Dreher, the son of Franz Anton Dreher, who already collected a lot of beer brewing experiences during his trips to Munich and England, tried to produce for the first time a bottom-fermented beer, and brought it to Vienna.
The Viennese people were so excited about it, that they only wanted to drink the Schwechater beer. This was the hour of birth for the nowadays popular "lager beer".

Because of the big onrush at the beer, Schwechater had to use machines for the production. Dreher was the first brewer in Austria who used a steam engine to brew his beer. This was in 1848. Nowdays the steam engine is displayed in the technical museum in Vienna.

Anton Dreher senior dies in 1863 and his son Anton Dreher junior takes over the company in 1870. In the "iceless winter" 1872 100 million kg of ice had to be brought by railway from Poland to Vienna. Such experience motivated Anton Dreher to learn more about artificial cooling and production of ice. In 1877 Schwechater Beer was the first who invented and used a cool machine for artificial cellar cooling.

During the first world war the production reached it's all-time-low. The brewery workers which had to go to war, still received their salary the whole war through. During the war the production was reduced, but never shut down.

Anton Dreher died as a very rich man in 1921. After his death the company was handed to his oldest son Anton Eugen Dreher (born 1871). But he died already in 1925. He was the last brewing master of the Schwechater beer, and so this was the end of the long lasting Schwechater beer dynasty.

The lead of the brewery was inherited to some relatives of Anton Eugen Dreher. But the relatives were not interested in the brewery, and sold their participations to several banks in 1925. This was how the 130-dynasty of family Dreher and the Schwechater beer ended.

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