Skip to comments.Cause for Mirth: The Return of Abbey Brewing to the United States
Posted on 05/08/2013 5:50:35 AM PDT by marshmallow
Beer is another one of those testimonies to how the Catholic Church built European civilization. It is true that brewing was widely practiced in the ancient world, but the process was very primitive, even as simple as soaking a loaf of bread in water. Modern brewing practices grew up within Benedictine monasteries, where beer provided good sustenance, sanitary drink, and probably some mirth (at least for the pilgrims). The monks even created a special brew to sustain Lenten fasts, the double bock, classically seen in Paulaners Salvator (The Savior; look for St. Francis Paola on the Paulener label).
The French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars, so destructive of Catholic culture generally, led to the decline of monastic brewing (and monasteries in general), secularizing the most famous of them. Some remnants remain, as seen in the Belgian Trappist beers (the most famous of which is Chimay) and Weltenburger, the second oldest brewery in the world (c. 1050), still run by Weltenburger Abbey. European founded monasteries in the United States continued the art of brewing, though prohibition brought about the demise of this practice. St. Vincent Archabbey, for instance, had a large and successful brewery founded in 1855.
But what good news, monastic brewing is entering a period of revival in the United States! Several initiatives around the country show that monasteries and independent breweries cooperating with monasteries are reviving interest in abbey style beers. This is a great sign for the renewal of Catholic culture in the United States. It will help bring monastic culture to the culture more broadly and hopefully will spark interest among Catholics in monastic history and its brewing culture.
The first example of an abbey beer, that is, a beer affiliated with an abbey, in the United States in recent times is........
(Excerpt) Read more at crisismagazine.com ...
Monks ale is very good.
The most important thread of the week!
Big Trappist Ale fan here.
Ping to the Homebrewers and Winemakers List
Beer brewed in the monasteries in Europe is the best.
Reconstruction of the 800 year old Chapter House of the Cistercian monastery in Ovila, Spain, in progress at the Abbey of New Clairvaux in Vina, California
One of the ales produced as a collaboration between Sierra Nevada Brewery and the Abbey of New Clairvaux. Proceeds from sales of the ale assist in reconstruction of the Chapter House.