When holy Roman Emperor Henry II created the bisphoric of Bamberg, a town north of Nurnberg in Bayern, it paved the way for the foundation by the first Bishop of Bamberg of the St. Michaelsberg abbey in 1015 on St. Michaelsberg (the mountain of Saint Michael).
The monks soon began brewing beer and after almost a century the monks were finally granted the rights in 1122 to make their beer available for sale. What followed was centuries of prosperity where the St. Michaelsberg brewing production grew pilsener.html and the monks developed and perfected their recipes.
The monks continued their brewery of St. Michaelsberg until the German Mediatization between 1795 and 1814 where a series of secularizations meant that the monasteries and abbeys in Germany lost their means of existence as they had to abandon their land and most were closed.
This development suddently offered opportunities to local brew masters who wanted to continue the tradition of the monks, and after a few different tenants the brewery of St. Michaelsberg found kindred spirits in the Peßler family who kept the brewery in their family for a few generations.
When the patriarch of the family Georg Sr. Peßler died in 1932 the brewery lost one of it’s most passionate advocates. In spite of the loss his sons continued his fathers work until 1969 when they both died only a few months apart which effectively ended the Peßler family’s involvement in St. Michaelsberg.
With the death of the Peßler sons one of the large breweries of Bamberg Maisel Brau took control of the St. Michaelsberg production and during this period the brand expanded to the rest of Germany and even the USA and China.
In 2008 Maisel Brau closed and St. Michaelsberg and the recipes were continued by United Beverage, a cooperation between Mr. Heide Rasmussen, the Kirk family behind Lego and a few people from the beer industry.
Today, the original brewery premises passed to the municipality of Bamberg and houses the Franconian Brewery Museum. Here you find several original St. Michael Berg brewing tools, experience the atmosphere and learn about Bamberg beer brewing and cultural heritage. Learn more about the Museum here.