New Orleans Brewing History

/New Orleans Brewing History

July 2017

New Orleans Brewery Tours For Every Type of Traveler

New Orleans has a lot more breweries now than it did a year ago. To help visitors (and locals) get to several safely at one time, three beer-focused bus tours have popped up in recent months. They’re all high quality and priced about the same, but each company has its own specialty. Check their websites and reviews to find the best fit for you.


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June 2017

Let It Flow!

There’s nothing like a cold beer on a hot New Orleans summer day. The condensation on the bottle can or glass is a visual reminder of the refreshment that’s sure to follow. The aroma varies from bread to bananas to pine to citrus to coffee and everything in between. The color ranges from the palest straw gold to burnished copper to the satisfying black of a well-seasoned cast iron skillet.

Beer’s no longer just for summer days, crawfish boils and football games—it’s found a place at fine dining restaurants as well as casual eateries, from the beer geek bar to the neighborhood dive. Events and festivals and beer-themed weeks are now part of the annual calendar.


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May 2017

New Orleans celebrates American Craft Beer Week

This is a great week to be a beer drinker in New Orleans.

American Craft Beer Week celebrations kick off beginning today.

And, there’s plenty to celebrate. There are more local suds being sold in the area than ever before.

In the last year, five breweries have opened in New Orleans. There are three companies now offering brewery tours in the city.

Patrick Healy, with New Orleans’ Original Brewery Tour, offers tours seven days a week. He says New Orleans’ beer scene has changed a lot in one year, and is making quite a splash.

“It’s exploding! We can barely keep up with it,” says Healy. “We’re seeing breweries opening left and right. It’s just been one brewery after the other. There’s a lot of great beer.”

In 2012, New Orleans had one production brewery and two brewpubs, and there were eight breweries in the state. Louisiana now has 34 breweries, including brewpubs.

He says the city has come along way since the days of Dixie and Jax.


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American Craft Beer Week returns to New Orleans

New Orleans’ beer scene has changed a lot in one year. When last year’s American Craft Beer Week began, Urban South Brewery had just opened (March 2016), making it the third production brewery and sixth brewery (including brewpubs Crescent City Brewhouse and Gordon Biersch and microbrewery Courtyard Brewery) in the city.

Since then, five breweries opened in Orleans Parish. Wayward Owl Brewing Company started brewing in November 2016, and four others were licensed to brew in March 2017: Brieux Carre Brewing Company in Faubourg Marigny, Parleaux Beer Lab in Bywater, Royal Brewery New Orleans in New Orleans East and Port Orleans Brewing Company on Tchoupitoulas Street near Napoleon Avenue.


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BrewTV Interview

Talking with Patrick Healey from New Orleans Brewery Tour about the history of New Orleans craft beer.

Posted by Brewtv on Thursday, May 4, 2017

January 2017

29 Great New Orleans Craft Beer Destinations

The New Orleans craft beer scene continues to boom, with plenty of great spots to sample both local and hard-to-find craft brews. It’s been a while since the last update, so there are lots of newcomers on the board: Wayward OwlFreret Beer Room, 40 Arpent Brewing, Vessel, Black Penny, Lager’s International Ale House, and Cochon Butcher (the final 2 have stepped up their game in recent months and have thusly earned their spots on the list.) (And Black Penny should have been on this list all along, so that’s our bad.)


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November 2016

A Tale of Two Beer Tour Buses

The New Orleans Original Brewery Tour, created and run every day at 4 p.m. by Premium Tours and Transportation, launched in conjunction with the opening of Urban South Brewingin March 2016. Premium Tours co-founder Patrick Healy notes that the tour needed three stops in close proximity, so waiting on Urban South to open was a no-brainer. Courtyard Brewery and NOLA Brewing round out the three-hour afternoon tour, which includes beer samples and a private tour of the brewery at each stop.

Healy says they will run the tour with as few as two people booked. “It’s important to be consistent,” he says, noting that information is available at most hotel concierge stands as well as online.

The small luxury bus picks up guests at their home or hotel and whisks them to Courtyard Brewery, which recently underwent an expansion and renovation. At Courtyard, everyone gets a 6-ounce pour of one of the brewery’s signature beer, and then the bartender will help even the newest beer drinker pick out a second beer to try.


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October 2016


Urban South Brewery opens, and on the very same day, New Orleans’ Original Brewery Tour runs its first tour!


Courtyard Brewery opens.


NOLA Brewing Company opens.


Dixie Brewery closes due to Hurricane Katrina.


Crescent City Brew House opens.


Abita Brewing Company is founded on the North Shore as the first craft brewer in Louisiana.


After having been sold to a different operator, Jax goes out of business, selling the Jax name to the Pearl Brewing Company of San Antonio, Texas. Pearl continues to produce Jax until 1985, when it is purchased by Pabst Brewing Company.


Jackson Brewery acquires the copyright to the “Jax” name from the Jax Brewing Company of Jacksonville, FL, after it goes out of business. Within a decade, the renamed Jax Brewery grows to become the tenth-highest-producing brewery in the United States.




Dixie Brewery opens and becomes one of the well-known breweries in the South.  Its motto: “One Brewery, 45 Brands.”


Jackson Brewery opens on Decatur St.  In addition to Jackson beer, it produced Fabacher, Bohemian Hof-Brau, Tex, 4-X and Sabena beer.


The New Orleans Brewing Association forms in order to combat the practice of English brewing syndicates looking to buy American breweries to expand their market shares. The alliance of all the breweries in the city makes them too large to be purchased.


J.J. Weckerling opens a second branch of his Louisiana Brewing Company on Jackson Avenue at Tchoupitoulas. The main building is still standing and is now part of a marine repair works. The bottling plant (on the uptown corner of Tchoupitoulas and Jackson) was demolished; that lot remains empty to this day.


New Orleans is known as the “Brewing Capital of the South,” with about fifty breweries listed in the city directory.


The first refrigeration equipment is installed in the Old Canal Brewery at Toulouse and Villere Streets.


Eagle Brewery opens at 1640 Tchoupitoulas (currently an electrical station).


The Lemp Brewing Co. of St. Louis, Missouri, begins shipping lager to New Orleans. Due to river transit, quite a large amount of beer is lost due to both freezing barrels in the winter and exploding barrels in the summer.


The first New Orleans brewery, The Brasserie, opens in what is now the Bywater section of New Orleans. Owned by Pierre Dreux and his brother Mathurin, it was essentially a plantation that made its money by supplying beer to Nouvelle Orleans.