The origin of VELTINS began in 1824 as a small guesthouse brewery in the West German city of Meschede-Grevenstein, supplying ales in line with the Reinheitsgebot for locals. It remained a community brewery for its first three decades until burgeoning beer enthusiast Clemens Veltins, son of the town mayor, went on a six-year beer vision quest, including a journey to the American beer stronghold of Milwaukee.
Having developed a thirst for quality beer, he took over the small, local brewery in 1852, and began supplying his beer to nearby taverns. The beer made use of the local spring water, which had a soft, mineral quality uniquely characteristic of the Westphalia region.
Fast-forward another thirty years to 1883, and Veltins would relocate to the outskirts of Grevenstein, on a much grander scale, setting the tone for a future of growth and innovation. This year also marked the transition of the ownership to sons Carl and Anton Veltins, who provided the Brauerei C. & A. VELTINS name that remains today.
A Contemporary Company
By 1896, the VELTINS brewery boasted electric lighting, a refrigeration system and a power plant – advancements well ahead of its peers. These advancements set a precedent for the company, which has made a theme of staying on the cutting edge of efficiency.
Third-generation owner Carl Veltins Jr. achieved many milestones in the company’s history, purchasing the first hand-operated bottling plant and a new artificial ice machine in 1951, setting up and expanding his own vehicle fleet, and tapping an additional source for a reliable supply of water.
Having survived both World Wars, VELTINS pioneered the idea of an environmentally conscious brewery, installing Europe’s first in-house clarification plant in 1966 to reduce its use of natural resources.
Growth and innovation continued under fifth-generation owner Rosemarie Veltins, who helmed the company from 1964 to 1994, after which ownership was passed to Susanne Veltins, great-great-granddaughter of Clemens Veltins.
Under Susanne Veltins’ leadership, the beer is as delicious as ever, with the same strict adherence to pure, natural ingredients, but the brewery is even more advanced.
In 2005, an eight month-long project saw the completion of a fully automated bottle-sorting plant and overhead pallet conveyor connecting the plant to the brewery’s logistics center, greatly increasing brewery efficiency and resource management.
VELTINS sets the protection of resources at the top of its priority list. Its motto “Avoid, recycle, dispose” is reflected in myriad ways, including its use of crown corks free of PVC and recyclable labels. Broken glass is recycled, melted down and processed into new bottles. Old, damaged beer crates are granulated and turned into new crates. The detached bottle labels, cardboard boxes and other waste paper are recycled by the paper mills. Even the spent barley malt from the brewing process, known as draff, is recycled as a high-quality feed in agriculture.
The care VELTINS puts into minimizing its resource usage is only matched by the care it puts into its beers. Here are the VELTINS products currently available in the United States:
Veltins Pilsner – 4.8% ABV
Veltins Pilsner pours clean with a pale golden body and white, cumulus head. Delicate malt aromas and a pleasant grassy character fill the nose. The first sip bursts with carbonation followed by a gently balanced note of malt and piquant hop bitterness. The sweet malt slowly transforms to a dry, clean and soft finish, which leaves the drinker refreshed and ready for another.
Veltins Grevensteiner – 6.8% ABV
Brewed as a Kellerbier, Veltins Grevensteiner is unfiltered, unpasteurized and meant to be enjoyed fresh. A gold and amber-hued lager that is initially dominated by caramel flavors with slight undertones of honey, Grevensteiner also expresses notes of roasted almonds and fresh fruit reminiscent of green apples. This thirst-quenching lager uses whole leaf hops and traditional ancient malts to authentically recreate the original brewery recipe.
While most craft lagers achieve crystal clarity and featherweight bodies, Grevensteiner breaks the mold, providing scintillating depth and complexity with a hazy and unfiltered body and a far creamier and more substantial mouthfeel – a break from the ordinary.
Veltins brewery is currently not open to the public, but its staff can be contacted at the following address: http://www.veltins.com/contact/.
In the U.S., Brauerei C. & A. Veltins beer can be found in the following states: AK, AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, HI, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, WA, WI, and WV. Look for Veltins Grevensteiner in local beer and liquor stores, both chain and independent, as well as specialty grocery outlets including Whole Foods and Total Wine.
Brauerei C.& A. VELTINS GmbH & Co. KG
An der Streue
+49 – 29 34 – 959 – 388