You know you’re doing something right when the word ‘Lager’ is synonymous with your brewery.  The road to being America’s best selling craft beer wasn’t an easy one for America’s oldest brewery (185 years). Find out how they survived Prohibition, brought the company back from near extinction & what’s helped them persevere for generations.

You’ll find Yuengling Brewery at our upcoming MGK Locals Only Beer Festival on April 21 at Independence Seaport Museum.  Tickets are on sale now and selling fast.

We’ll be highlighting each brewery participating in our event on with our Locals Only Spotlight feature.  You’ll get a feel for what drives them to make delicious craft beer and most importantly what tasty offerings they’ll be serving up on April 21.

What They’re Serving

Each brewer will serve up a Flagship beer (a beer they’re well known for) & a Specialty/reserve beer.  Attendees will get to vote for their favorite beer in each category.

Flagship Beer Category – Yuengling Black and Tan – 4.6% ABV
Yuengling Black & Tan models a traditional English Half & Half. Introduced in 1986, Yuengling produced one of the first hand-crafted draft blends to lead this style of American brewing. Black & Tan combines 60% of our popular Dark Brewed Porter and 40% of our Premium Beer to create a brew that is rich and dark in color with hints of caramel and coffee from the dark roasted malts.

Specialty Category – Golden Pilsner
A modern pilsner crafted with the perfect balance of hop and malt character for crisp, smooth refreshment

Yuengling’s Core Values

Yeungling takes great pride in being recognized as America’s Oldest Brewery. The company has been continuously family-owned and operated since 1829. Dick Yuengling & his four daughters remain committed to producing the highest quality portfolio of beers for customers to enjoy. Here are their core values.

  • Commitment to quality and excellence
  • Respect for all individuals
  • Superior service to our wholesalers, retailers and consumers
  • A positive work environment for our employees
  • Honor our heritage and traditions
  • Enhance and invest in our local communities
  • Preserve and protect our natural resources

Surviving Prohibition With Near Beer and An Energy Drink

To survive Prohibition, Yuengling produced three different near beers.
The first was “Yuengling Special,” the most popular near beer brew. In addition, they introduced “Yuengling Por-Tor,” a take-off of their popular “Celebrated Pottsville Porter.” The third was an experiment with a unique brewing process that produced a cereal beverage called “Yuengling Juvo,” marketed as an early energy drink.

Dick Yuengling, the present owner, credits the company’s survival to the determination and hard work of his father and uncle.
“If it wasn’t for their loyalty to the business during that difficult time, the company wouldn’t be here today.”

From Stacking Cases To Running The Company

Richard “Dick” Yuengling, Jr. started working at his family’s brewery in 1958. As a teenager, he helped stack cases, lug empty kegs, clean the cellar tanks and load trucks. He watched as his father and uncle struggled when they took the company’s reins in 1963. “All the small breweries were going out of business,” Dick recalls. “I was being told not to make a career of it.”

After his high school graduation, his parents sent him off to Lycoming College to prepare for another line of work. Even so, he left Lycoming after only one year and returned to the brewery to pursue his passion.

“With limited funds for modernization, our brewery was just hanging on by a thread. It wasn’t worth very much.”

In 1973, Dick opted to satisfy his desire to test his own skills by purchasing a wholesale beer business in Pottsville.
He ran his business for 11 years with a great deal of success. Little did he know, these skills would soon be put to an even bigger test.

In 1985, Richard, Sr. was ailing. Dick had a decision to make — whether to continue with the distributorship or return to the family business.
Despite the company’s financial struggles, he decided to purchase the brewery to keep the company from closing its doors.
On that day he vowed to not be remembered as the Yuengling who presided over the demise of his family’s brewing legacy.
Every effort was made to modernize the company and make it more competitive in the marketplace without compromising its heritage.
Dick began work with Ray Norbert, the longtime brewmaster, to expand the company’s product portfolio.  Original Black & Tan was produced by combining the company’s Porter and Premium brands.

In 1987, a historic recipe was resurrected and Yuengling Traditional Amber Lager was reborn. Eventually, this product would go on to draw national attention.

The phenomenal turnaround success of the company can best be attributed to four elements:

  • Dick Yuengling’s aggressive commitment,
  • a strong distribution network,
  • the quality of Yuengling’s products and
  • the dedication of its employees.

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