What are those people doing there? Well, that looks like heavy work! Ah, it’s that time again! Of course: the brewing vessel is being carried from one brewery to the other! This piece of equipment looks like a huge, square bathtub. But made of pure copper and weighing about 6 ½ hundredweights. What a grind!
It is easy to imagine that most brewers, and especially their menials, wish they had their very own brewing vessel and did not have to share it with other breweries. Every brewery, however, is only allowed to brew three to four times a year, strictly in turn. All of that is managed by the guild of brewers. That is a way of making sure that every brewer receives his share and is able to make a living. And that is also why it makes sense not to buy a brewing vessel by yourself but to share it with the other members of the guild - which means, though, it has to be carried through one gate to the other again and again.
Every profession has its hardship, after all. The brewer’s one is relatively small, though, measured against the amount of money he makes! For many years it was the guild of brewers that was responsible for 2/3 of the tax revenue. An explanation for their wealth is the fact that most of the beer is sold beyond their own city. You can find the “Ducksteinbier” everywhere from the Netherlands all the way to Potsdam. And of course, as the name of its home town “Königslutter” suggests, it is also consumed by kings! Frederick William I. of Prussia, for instance, liked to drink it in company of his tobacco club. They even say, he became raving mad once when he ran short of the beer! It is that popular for a reason. Its golden color, its special aroma and taste are all second to none. One reason is the mastered art of brewery, which is overseen by the masters of the guild. Another reason is the great wheat from Magdeburg, which the malt is gained from. Above all, however, the clean spring water taken from the Lutter makes the “Ducksteinbier” so unique. Some doctors in Braunschweig even take the beer for medicine! No wonder everybody wants to get their hands on it. And as longs as Prussian taxes do not get too high it will be just the same way in a hundred years from now!