The Stepan Razin Brewery represents a two hundred year tradition that has been interrupted only during the two world wars and the Bolshevik revolution. We trace our brewery's beginnings back to the founding of Russia's first two breweries.
The origins of the Stepan Razin brewery
A small brewery was established in 1795 by Abraham Krohn and Friedrich Danielson on lands belonging to the Alexander Nevsky Monastery. The two enterprising brewers were greatly encouraged when Empress Catherine the Great lent the new undertaking her personal endorsement.
The new brewery employed the top fermentation method that had for centuries been the traditional way beer and ale were brewed in England. But when researching the fascinating origin of today's Stepan Razin Brewery, there is another equally important chapter that needs telling. It begins with an obscure Finnish village called Kalula that existed on the banks of the Fontanka River long before Peter the Great founded
St. Petersburg. Although the little settlement was immediately absorbed into Peter's new capital of the Russian Empire, its name survived in Russian as Kalina and was given to the bridge that crossed the Fontanka at the point where the ancient village had once stood. Near that bridge in the 1790s a brewer named Noah Casalet started producing so delicious a beer that he became a purveyor to the Russian Imperial Court.
In 1848 Krohn's son Feodor and Casalet's son Peter entered into partnership, combined their skills and knowledge, and started brewing Bavarian-style lager at the brewery near Kalinkin Bridge. Emperor Alexander II ratified the Kalinkin Brewery's charter in 1862. Immediately upon receiving the tsar's approval, the brewery's owners, including Noah Casalet's grandson Edward, embarked on the two-year-long task of refurbishing and rebuilding their aging brewery. With Russia's entrance into World War I the brewery decreased production; operation ceased altogether during the early years of the Soviet period and during World War II.
Through the two centuries of its existence, the brewery and its quality beers have been awarded many of the brewing world's highest honours. Stepan Razin is today one of the largest breweries in Russia and maintains the tradition of old-fashioned brewing skill. The Stepan Razin Brewery is justly proud of its slogan:
We've kept the taste of real beer — for you!