A Pall Over Foggy Bottom
Foggy Bottom beer is no more.
Founder and owner Gary Heurich has announced in a e-mail today that "after 20 unprofitable years, the Olde Heurich Brewing Company has discontinued brewing operations, and will cease sales of its beers ... with the last of [February's] shipments to our distributors."
Heurich said that he expects all kegs and bottles will disappear "by the beginning of April."
While it wasn't brewed in D.C. -- that was handled by a contractor in Utica, N.Y. -- Foggy Bottom's lagers and ales were a fixture at local restaurants and taverns. Its distinctive Washington Monument-shaped tap handles were found behind many bars and at RFK Stadium, which boasted a wood-paneled "Foggy Bottom Brewpub" behind home plate.
Heurich's letter took a parting swipe at Washington's "relative lack of a hometown spirit" for not supporting "the Washington area's heritage beer," but to be honest, if Foggy Bottom was turning out a truly great product, the company might not have been in such dire straits. As it was, I enjoyed many pints of Foggy over the years, but other than its local ties, the brews never really stood out from an increasingly crowded microbrew market.
Washington's last brewery, owned by Gary's grandfather Christian Heurich, closed in 1956, and the Kennedy Center now stands on the site. Gary Heurich will discuss his grandfather and the history of brewing in Washington on March 23 at the Woodrow Wilson House.
While it's too late to save Foggy Bottom beers, Gary Heurich is currently involved in efforts to keep his grandfather's Victorian mansion open to the public. The Brewmaster's Castle, completed in 1894, is one of the best-preserved Victorian homes in America, but must raise around $180,000 by March 15 to avoid forclosure. The Castle is open for tours on Wednesdays at 12:15 and 1:15 p.m., and Saturdays at 1:15.
Posted by: sadlagerfan | March 2, 2006 11:45 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: mizerock | March 9, 2006 4:52 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: carrie | March 9, 2006 11:14 PM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.