Brauhaus Schönbuch (Brauerei Schönbuch)
Sunday 20th December 2015
The title of this piece may be a little confusing because Brauerei Schönbuch has reinvented itself in recent years. They now own three pubs that look at first sight to be brew-pubs. They are not, despite being named Brauhaus Schönbuch. They contain bits of old brewing equipment from the historic brewery in Böblingen. The particular one I visited on this day is housed in a new building alongside the old brewery, which is still active, please see photograph, right.
The story begins in 1823 when Karl Gottfried Dinkelacker established a brewery at Böblingen’s Marktplatz (Market Place). It didn’t stay long in this place as in 1829 it was relocated to premises on Postplatz.
In 1860 his sons, Christian and Wilhelm take over at the brewery. In 1873 Christian left the company to found the Brauerei Dinkelacker in Stuttgart. Please see separate BeerVisits article on the Brauereigastätte Dinkelacker.
1891 sees the first light beer produced. During 1898 Wilhelm Dinkelaker (as he now spells his name) passes the brewery over to his sons Wilhelm (II) and Hermann.
1902 sees the introduction of steam power and in the following year bottled beer is introduced. Schönbuch Bräu, a special beer, comes on to market for the first time. Whether this is the moment that the present-day brewery’s name first arrived is not known.
Wilhelm’s sons Wilfried and Max join the brewery during 1932. Böblingen is an industrial town and in 1943 was the target for very heavy bombing. However, the brewery only suffers superficial damage. Fritz Habisreitinger, who is the son law of Hermann Dinkelaker, takes over the administration side of the brewery.
In 1959 Werner, the son of Wilfried Dinkelaker takes overall command of the company. The period from the 1960s to the 1990s see a continual process of modernisation.
In 1991 the first wheat beer is produced and during the next year a large biergarten is established in the brewery yard. During 1994 Götz Habisreitinger becomes the new administrative boss and Werner (II) Dinkelaker is in control of the company from 1997.
Modernisation continues throughout the 2000s. In 2009 the present pub building is constructed in the biergarten and is known as the Brauhaus, even though it doesn’t brew!
The existing brewery tap in Postplatz continues, but has goes very upmarket. To differentiate the brewing side of the company from the “Brauhaus”, it is now known as Schönbuch Braumanufaktur, changed from Schönbuch Bräu. Many new beers are introduced during the first two decades of the 21st Century.
In 2011 Brauhaus Schönbuch Stuttgart is opened and it is followed in 2014 by Brauhaus Schönbuch Calw in the town of Calw which is to the west of Stuttgart. There is no reason to suppose that the openings of the so-called Brauhaus pubs will cease there.
I don’t want to give a negative impression here, as Schönbuch is a good regional brewery that produces a lot of very interesting beers. I just want to point out that the title Brauhaus is a misnomer and entices people to think they are drinking a house-brewed beer.
On this day I arrived at the “Brauhaus” by taxi from the station. I really wasn’t walking well at all, so it had become essential if I was to get to the pub. This is a huge barn-like structure and as soon as I entered I could see how very busy it was. Nearly every seat and table was taken but at least some groups were drifting away so I managed to get a seat on one end of a long high table
The explanation for the crowd was their offer of “Brunch im Brauhaus”, which is a massive buffet of breakfast and lunch. At this time it cost €24.90 for adults and €10.00 for children. At first sight that may seem a lot but included a full breakfast menu and then one for lunch with many meat, fish and vegetarian dishes.
Drinks are included, so unlimited food along with endless amounts of tea, coffee and fruit juices. But best of all, non-stop beer which was self-service straight from a wooden barrel! No wonder it is popular!
So 15.00 had passed, signalling the end of the buffet. It was promptly cleared away, some screens were removed and the bar service counter was revealed. There were four draught beers offered, which were: Ur-Edel (4.8%) a standard South German Vollbier; Hefeweizen (4.8%); a wheat beer; Naturtrüb (4.8%), an unfiltered light beer, probably no more than Ur-Edel unfined, and Pils (4.8%). I had the first and last and thought they were quite acceptable.
Brauhaus Schönbuch, Lange Strasse 20, 71032 Böblingen. Tel: 07031 681323
Hours: Monday-Sunday: 11.00-24.00
Böblingen railway station is served from Stuttgart Hbf (main station).
There's an S-Bahn local train every half an hour that takes 24 minutes.
Also there is a Regional Express (RE).
If you leave Böblingen railway station on the town side, you will see pedestrian Bahnhofstrasse opposite. Continue along here to its end. There turn left, and almost immediately go right into Stadtgrabenstrasse. Walk along here and go on when it changes into Sindelfingerstrasse which leads to Postplatz.
Then turn right into Lange Strasse, you will see the Brauhaus Schönbuch on the right.
It's just over one Km.