Brewing and building history of Schlenkerla

The historic smoked beer brewery Schlenkerla has a long and eventful history. In addition to the old records on the estate in Dominikanerstraße 6 there are also brew-historically significant documents on Oberer Stephansberg 27-35, where still today the Smokebeer matures in the deep rock cellars.

Important Schlenkerla years since the 14th century:

1387 first documentation of the estate on Oberer Stephansberg 27/29, where still today the historic lagerings are situated in rock cellars. Already in that year it was owned by a brewer named "Eberlein Breu"
1405 first documentation of the Schlenkerla building as "house of the blue lion"
1485 first documentation of coopers and hence presumable also brewers in Dominikanerstraße 6 (cooper and brewer were usually synonimously used in Bamberg, since barrel making was THE key technology for beer making)
1538 Asmus Schneider is patron and cooper, and therefore also brewer in the "House of the blue lion"
1678 relativly short after the 30 year war coopers and brewers are again owners in Dominikanerstraße 6, which is now called "Brewery of the blue lion"

Johann Wolfgang Heller is the owner as cooper and brewer and changes the name to "Brewery Heller". His family will operate the brewery for 6 generations in direct family line.


The first generation of the Graser/Trum family runs the Brewery Heller: Konrad Graser. Before, Konrad was the "Bräu" in the Michaelsberg brewery, Bambergs oldest brewery (first brewing right from 1154). His son Andreas (the one with the limbing walk) will be the patron thanks to whom the Heller-Bräu receives the additional name "Schlenkerla"

Schlenkerla outside view


The newer and hence in more detail documented brewing and building history from the 20th century onwards:

Year Event
1920er Schlenkerla beer cellar (i.e. beer garden) is closed, as were almost all other Bamberg beer gardens due to the economic decline after World War I
1926 lease and restoration of the Dominikanerklause
1930er a new brewhouse is constructed on part of the site of the former beer garden
1958 building of new malt silos
1959 building of a depo for beech wood logs
1960 purchase of the Dominikanerklause together with the "house under the storks"
1962 new germination boxes
1963 new lagering tanks for the historic cellars underneath the Schlenkerla brewery
1964 new machinery for bottling
1964 opening of the Bamberg room
1965 new main fermentation facility
1966 purchase of the former sick bay building of the Bamberg dominican monastery
1972 construction of barley and malt silos
1974 new toilet facilities and a new kitchen for the brewery tavern
1979 modernisation of the brewhouse
1988 modernisation of the main fermentation
2006 measure of the cellars underneath Schlenkerla reveals, that they are in part from 12th century
2007 opening of the Schlenkerla beer garden in the former yard of the dominican monastery
2008 new lagering vessels for the historic cellars underneath Schlenkerla brewery
2009 new toilet facilities for the brewery tavern
2010 new kitchen for the brewery tavern
2010 opening of the Ulanenzimmer
2011 restoration of the historic ceiling painting in the Dominikenerklause
2011 new machinery for cleansing of wooden barrels and cleansing plus filling of metal kegs
2012 separate main top fermentation for Schlenkerla wheat
2012 new filtering cellar ein neuer Filterkeller
2013 restoration of the Schlenkerla facade
2014 new lagering vessels for the historic cellars underneath Schlenkerla brewery
2015 the gallery of ancestral portraits and the historic "Lüsterweibla" are restored
2016 new fermenting vessels and a yeast management system
2018 new pressure tanks and a new automatic bottle inspector for the filling line
Renovation of the in 2017 acquired brewery adjacent building: The former rock cellar and access building of the "King Bishops Brown Beer House" from 18th century. The long sand stone stair way to the cellars is again laid open, as it was at a time when beer was transported only in wooden barrel by so called "Schröter".

[Schlenkerla family line ] [Schlenkerla chronicle ]