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The history of brewing in Lviv

Danylo Yurchyk

Beer is an alcoholic beverage obtained by fermentation. The third drink in the world by popularity after water and tea. It is characterized by a specific bitterness and aroma that gives it hops, as well as its foaming ability. Beer production process is called brewing

One of Lviv's food cards, besides of course coffee and chocolate, is beer. Lviv is an incredibly beer-filled city. The number of pubs and bars, as well as craft breweries is constantly growing here. Lviv Brewery is the most famous in Ukraine, and “Lvivske“ beer can be found on the counters of many cities in Europe and in all settlements of our country. Also interesting is the history of beer in the city of lion. We would like to tell you today about the history of brewing in Lviv and the history of beer in general.


People learned the ability to brew beer long before our era - the secrets of brewing were known to the Egyptians of the Pharaohs, ancient Greeks, and even Sumerians, whose civilization is considered one of the first in the world. In Slavic peoples the name of the beer is the same and is derived from the slogan "pivo" formed from the verb "piti" (to drink). It is interesting that once the word "beer" meant not a particular drink, but any drink that is often drunk. The words "beer" and "drink" are consonant in the Slavic languages: Ukrainian "пиво" ("pyvo"), bys. "піво" ("pivo), pls. "piwo", czech. and slovak. "pivo", Serbian. "пиво" / "pivo", rus "піво" ("pivo"). It was the Slavs who were among the first in the world to start adding hops to beer.

Beer production was a very time consuming process consisting of several cycles: malt production, brewing the mash (an aqueous solution that was formed during the fermentation of fruits or cereals), fermenting the mash with special brewer's yeast, fermentation, filtration and bottling.

In the old days, due to the complexity and lack of any special equipment, the opportunity for brewing appeared only in late winter in early spring, and was engaged in this process by all members of the community. Brewing can even be considered as a means of diplomacy, because brewing a joint beer with someone still meant "getting along".

On the territory of Ukraine, the first to brew beer was Trypillia - the inhabitants of an ancient but highly cultured civilization of farmers who lived in the territory of modern central Ukraine, Moldova and Romania. Later, beer was brewed in Kievan Rus, one of the largest states of Europe in the tenth century, including almost every monastery and university of that time boasting its own brewery.

Cossacks were also engaged in brewing - "free people" who fought for the independence of Ukraine, but there were no large beer enterprises at that time, breweries were small and beer was not often exported. Beer factories first appeared in Lutsk, Lviv and Kiev in the XVIII century, and today it would be very difficult to count all breweries, so many of them.

Beer brewing started in Lviv as early as the XIV century. The first documentary evidence of the beginning of brewing in Lviv can be considered the charter of the shop of Lviv breweries, dating from 1425.

Since then, brewing in the city has developed rapidly. Beer was brewed by craftsmen, monks, Jesuits, and the last Polish Count Stanislaw Potocki was given the right to build his own brewery in the suburbs of Lviv - this was a turning point in the history of brewing for Lviv.

The sacral date is 1715 - the year of foundation in the suburb of Klepariv Lviv brewery. The technology here was at the time advanced, water was drawn from artesian wells, hops and malt were used only of the highest quality, which best contributed to the popularity of Lviv beer.

The brewery was not the only one in Lviv with a total of 13 at the time, but the largest and the best. After the fall of the Jesuit Order, the brewery was first taken care of by private entrepreneurs and later by the joint stock company of Lviv breweries. Lviv beers of that time, including "Bawar", "Porter Imperial", "Exportowe" were known far beyond Lviv. Already in the middle of the XIX century. The Lviv brewery is one of the three best breweries of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and has become the largest brewery in the region.

Speaking of Lviv beer, it is impossible not to mention Robert Doms - an entrepreneur, tycoon, philanthropist, public figure, one can say "Local Tony Stark".

Robert Doms is a legendary figure of the Lviv brewery, the owner of the brewery on Kleparivska street, during which she gained unprecedented fame. Today it is named after a popular restaurant near the brewery, as well as several types of beer.

During the occupation of Lviv by the USSR, the Lviv brewery became state-owned and was renamed "Kolos OJSC" (1964). The most popular varieties at that time were actually "Lviv" and "Zhigulivske".

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Lviv Brewery regained its original name and in 1999 became one of the largest breweries of Baltic Beverages Holding (now Carlsberg Group).

The Museum of Brewing, which was founded on the occasion of the 290th anniversary of the Lviv Brewery and was opened to visitors in 2005, is noteworthy. "Lviviarnya" is the only beer museum in Ukraine, which includes a cultural space, a restaurant for tasting and a museum with unique exhibits and modern design.

On May 9, 2011, at the initiative of the Lviv Brewery and "Lviviarnya" in Lviv on the Svobody avenue near the store towers, where beer was first started brewing in the city, a monument to Lviv breweries was erected - bronze sculpture of a brewery with a beer barrel.

Every day at 5:15 pm, he plays the anthem of the Lviv Brewery - a song by Anatoly Kos-Anatolsky performed by Piccardiyska Tertsiya band. In the same year, the famous French site "The heritage of watchmaking" recognized the clock on the monument as one of the most original in the world.

This is the story of Beer in Lviv. But it is still far from over, as craft breweries are now writing a recent history. Read more in our Article "Craft Beer of Ukraine with Delivery".


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