New York’s All-Time Greatest Brewery: Iroquois Brewing Company

“The handsomest and best appointed brewery in Buffalo is the one owned by the Iroquois Brewing Co.” So proclaimed a pamphlet prepared by the Buffalo Brewers’ Association in 1897, when Buffalo played host to the thirty-seventh annual convention of the United States Brewers’ Association. Iroquois played a large role in bringing Buffalo to national prominence as a suds-producing city before Prohibition struck, and, in the decades following its repeal, Iroquois would become Buffalo’s biggest and most popular brewery.

The roots of Iroquois trace back to the very beginning of brewing in Buffalo. One of the city’s first brewers, Jacob Roos, opened his Roos Brewery in 1830 and in the early 1840s, moved the operation to Pratt Street between what is now Broadway and William. In 1892, Leonard Burgwerger bought the operation, razed it to build one of the most technologically advanced facilities in the country, and Iroquois was born. Portions of this massive complex remain standing today. As local historian and antiquer Peter Jablonski points out in his tours and lectures about Buffalo’s brewing history, one of the façades still boasts the Iroquois name in relief… read more >

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