A new start up brewery is taking shape in Kensington, last week winning neighborhood approval to sell growlers to go, merchandise, and pub grub from its future home at 5th & Cecil B. Moore.
Tim Patton, owner and sole proprietor of St. Benjamin Brewing Company, has been searching for more than two years for a place to turn his home brewing hobby into a full fledged business. The 14K square foot industrial building at 1710 N. 5th St. turned out to be the perfect fit, and Patton picked up the building for $395K in February.
As it turns out, the building was home to the Theo Finkenauer Lager Brewery a hundred years ago. It also happens to be just a couple of blocks away from the abandoned and possibly endangered Gretz Brewery building on Germantown…
Several months ago, we brought the Gretz Brewery, located in Kensington at 1524 Germantown Ave. to your attention.
Recently, a reader brought a depressing bit of news to our attention. Apparently, some or all of the historic brewery complex, which has been unused for fifty years, could be torn down by the City in the near future.
The orange sign
Unless the owners of this property correct this violation and convince the City that the building is not in imminent danger of collapse, it will be torn down. What a shame it would be to see any of this complex demolished…
We’ve passed by the Gretz Brewery at 1524 Germantown Ave. (basically at 4th and Oxford Sts.) many times over the years, admiring what remains of its glory, and lamenting its poor condition. This building, a link to Philadelphia’s deep rooted brewing past, becomes more and more relevant as our brewing present continues on its upward trajectory. And what a building (or collection of buildings) it is.
There's a lot going on
Founded as Rieger & Gretz Brewing Company in 1881, according to rustycans.com, this brewery was in operation during Philadelphia’s brewing heyday, survived Prohibition, and operated until 1960. We can’t find any information that it’s been used since.
In 1949. From rustycans.com
Does the Gretz Brewery have a future, or will it…