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A BRIEF HISTORY AND OVERVIEW 
OF BREWING AND BREWING IN SYRACUSE

The beer industry is a large part of the history of Syracuse. Dating back to the 1850’s, immigrants from Germany, England, and Ireland brought their brewing skills to their new home. Syracuse soon became the brewing capital of upstate New York. Over 2 dozen breweries produced beer for local consumption, as well as a market that ranged from Binghamton to Watertown, and Rochester to Utica. 

The Greenway Brewery, which once stood where Niagara Mohawk now resides was the largest brewery outside of New York City. Greenway also had the largest brewery sales outside of Central New York. An estimated 100,000 thousand barrels per year were exported as far away as China.

Prohibition killed off many local breweries which lasted from January 16, 1920 to December 5, 1933. In an attempt to stay alive, area breweries tried producing soda, spring water and near beer, which contains 1/2 of 1% alcohol by volume. Among the breweries which made a comeback by 1933 were the Haberle Congress Brewing Co., Zett’s Brewery, Bartles Brewery, and Moore and Quinn Brewery just to name a few. By the 1960’s all breweries in Syracuse were out of business, and with their demise a large part of the Syracuse culture was lost. After a 32 year hiatus, commercial brewing was restored to Syracuse with the establishment of The Syracuse Suds Factory.

The beers and ales which we enjoy today are made with the same ingredients used through the ages: malted barley and other grains, hops yeast and water. The process expressed in its simplest terms, begins with “malting.” Only the choicest of grains are selected by the maltser. Cleaned raw barley is steeped in water and germinated and sprouted, dried slowly, and finally, roasted to produce malted barley, This process awakens the grain’s own enzymes which will later convert the grain’s starch to sugar in the next step called “mashing.” Mashing styles vary, however, in essentially all the malted grain is crushed in mills, mixed with water, and heated for selected times at carefully chosen temperatures. This produces a very sweet sugar solution which, after filtration to remove solid grain residuals, is called “wort.”

Next, the wort is transferred to the brew kettle where it is boiled with the addition of hops. Boiling sterilizes the wort, causing some unwanted grain protein factions to separate and impart to the wort the delicate refreshing bittering substances from the hops. After boiling, the wort is cooled, aerated, and mixed with an amount of selected ale or lager yeast while being transferred to a fermenter for “ primary” fermentation. The primary, or main fermentation, takes about one week at carefully controlled temperatures. During the fermentation the yeast metabolizes the wort sugars, proteins, and trace nutrients to produce alcohol, carbon dioxide gas, and small amounts of a multitude of delicately flavored materials which contribute to the full character of the product. During all fermentation phases temperatures are carefully controlled with some final fermentations lasting three weeks and others as long as six months or more, depending on product type. Some finished products will contain a desired small amount of suspended yeast, while others will be “bright” filtered to remove yeast, as is the characteristic of the beer style.

The brewing process equipment which you may observe in our brew room consists of a brew kettle, three fermenters, heat exchanger (wort cooler), water filter, and fermenter temperature control system. Not observable, but below ground level, we maintain our cellaring operation which contains coolers, finish beer tanks, beer filters, keg washing, filling equipment, and extensive finished product storage.

To enables us to brew the widest possible selection of beer and ale styles, we have chosen to brew with concentrates of wort of exceptional quality, which have been custom prepared for us at both domestic and European mashing facilities. This allows us to escape technical limitations of a single fixed mashing operation. We also use the finest available domestic and European hops varieties. Some of the hops are grown right here in Central New York. The select ale and lager yeast strains we use are also from European and domestic sources.

We truly hope that you enjoy our beers and ales and savor the great care and pride that go into producing these fine fine products.


Norman Soine
Syracuse Suds Factory
Brewmaster

Pictures from the brewery at the old location

Three fermentors used in the brewing process. We utilize three individually computer temperature controlled jacketed fermentors which enable us to produce a wide range of ales and lagers.

 

Norman Soine, our Master Brewer, starting to brew our second lager. We brew with a malt extract process as well as a mash which enables us to brew a large variety of things.

When we moved we relocated the entire brewery. You Can See This Building The New Suds Factory, The New Suds Factory Tour

The Syracuse Suds Factory is announcing that As of 1/1/11 Norman Soine has stepped down as our Brewmaster- Norm has been with us since we began back in 1993 and has been with us steadily for 17 years. It is with a heavy heart we bid him goodbye on this chapter of his life. We have tons of great memories and will cherish them all. We wish him and his family the best of luck as he moves on in retirement to spend more time with his grandkids and the rest of his family





Norm you will always be a part of our family Good Luck and Thank you!

Rich White will be taking Norm's place let's all wecome Rich

 

 

SYRACUSE SUDS FACTORY
320 S. Clinton St.
Syracuse, NY 13202
ph (315) 471-AALE [2253]

info@sudsfactory.com

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Syracuse Suds Factory, 2001