The Thirty Years' War caused many families to leave their old homeland in Switzerland and settle elsewhere. Quite a few families settled in the Odenwald area at that time, including Ulrich Schönberger and his family. In Ober-Mossau he brewed his own beer from the end of the 18th century and supplied his inn "Zum Hirschen" with it. In 1834 his grandson Ludwig Schönberger married in Groß-Bieberau, and insisted on starting brewing beer there too. In 1835 he opened a brewery and an inn. As only a few people in Groß-Bieberau know today, the brewery was located on the site at the corner of Marktstrasse and Jahnstrasse. Only later did they move to the opposite side, to where the brewery still stands today. Incidentally, the brewery premises are located on the remains of Roman manors that are from the time of Roman settlement. The brewery was run under the name: "Brauerei Ludwig Schönberger und Sons" by both sons, Georg and Ludwig-Martin. But after a few years they decided to split up the property. Georg kept the brewery, Ludwig-Martin took over the inn "Zum Odenwald".
Brewery family in 1905
World War I and inflation did not make economic survival easy. Of course, technical progress was not missed out in the twenties. Nowadays people smile when they say that you were one of the most innovative entrepreneurs with a truck and the switch to electricity, but back then the employees were very happy about it. By the end of the twenties sales recovered to the pre-war level, but the consequences of the global economic crisis and the subsequent unemployment of the thirties, as well as the Second World War, drove the brewery into a crisis. However, the company recovered in the post-war period, the years of reconstruction. So they saw themselves in a position to properly modernize in the fifties, i.e. the brewery was brought up to the state of the art.
Historic brewery site
When in 1968 Dr. Rolf Schönberger took over the brewery, he brought the latest knowledge of brewery technology with him from his studies in Freising - Weihenstephan. The implementation led to a comprehensive expansion in the brewery and the acquisition of the most modern equipment. During this time the business flourished, the annual output of up to 50,000 hectoliters of beer (= 5,000,000 liters of beer) was achieved.
In the nineties, the German brewing industry entered a violent crisis: The per capita consumption of beer fell rapidly due to increasing health awareness among Germans; in contrast to all other industries, the price of beer fell steadily; Large national beer brands pushed their way onto the German market with massive advertising measures, as well as a decisive trend reversal in the catering industry caused the Schönberger brewery to stop production at the end of the 1990s. A step that many small and medium-sized breweries had to take these days and which was extremely difficult for everyone with a past rich in tradition.
Nevertheless, you can still enjoy the good Schönberger beer.
It is now produced by the local brewery in Pfungstadt according to the same recipe.