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Following COVID-19 Closure, Stoudts Brewing Co. Makes Triumphant Return

Thanks to fellow Pennsylvania brewery Evil Genius Beer Co., Stoudts Brewing is back with its authentic German-style beers.

Following COVID-19 Closure, Stoudts Brewing Co. Makes Triumphant Return

In 1987, long before the term “craft beer” was ever coined, Stoudts Brewing Co. began pouring authentic German-style ales and lagers in Adamstown, Pennsylvania to wide acclaim. At its height, the brewery was distributing its well-crafted and tasty Reinheitsgebot-approved brews to 20 states.

Founded by Carol Stoudt when she added a 30-barrel brewhouse to her already-thriving restaurant and antique business, she instantaneously became the first female brewmaster since Prohibition and was on the forefront of the craft beer movement just as it was starting to take shape.

According to the brewery, “under Carol’s leadership Stoudts quickly rose to prominence as one of the top breweries not just in Pennsylvania but across the entire East Coast. The Stoudts brand became synonymous with quality, and in just a few short years, they were winning countless awards at the nation’s premier beer festivals.”

The company and Stoudt herself has long positioned the company under the guidance of the word Gemütlichkeit – a term with no direct translation but which she explains to mean: “like-minded people having a great time together, through their authentic German-style beers.”

Of course, breweries and restaurants around the country fell upon difficult times in 2020 and much of 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as many breweries shuttered for good and others closed temporarily for considerably long periods of time – others still had to pause their plans for opening due to ongoing health concerns.

Sadly, one of those breweries that fell prey to the troubling economic times brought on by COVID was Stoudts, and the brewery closed its doors in 2020 and ceased production shortly thereafter.

Evil Genius Co-Founder Trevor Hayward and Stoudts Brewing Co. Founder Carol Stoudt
Carol Stoudt, the founder of Stoudts Brewing Co., is happy to be back in business with the help of Evil Genius Beer Co. and its co-founder Trevor Hayward.

For Stoudt, however, this was just a bump in the road. “It’s important to continue this legacy of equality and pursuit of innovation,” Stoudt said in a release. “When we closed the brewhouse in 2020 we had no intention of retiring the brand. We just needed the right situation to bring Stoudts back to the forefront of the market.”

That “right situation” appeared in the form of fellow Pennsylvania brewery Evil Genius Beer Co., which partnered with Stoudts Brewing Co. to allow the brewery to return to shelves across the Keystone state with its famed Stoudts Oktoberfest – the perfect accompaniment to the return of autumn.

“I was disappointed when they announced they were closing,'' said Evil Genius Co-Founder Trevor Hayward. “I’ve known Carol for many years, having attended her legendary beer fests and becoming close friends, so helping to relaunch Stoudts just made sense. People were missing out on really fantastic beer, and we wanted to help bring that back for them.”

Stoudts Oktoberfest is a märzen-style beer that employs only German-imported ingredients for a beer that would work just as well in the festival halls of Munich’s Oktoberfest as it would on a couch in a house in the Poconos while the Eagles play.

It’s good to know that the brands of many craft breweries are so strong that they can be rejuvenated despite an unprecedented global pandemic. The beer world would have been worse without Stoudts, and it’s nice to hear a feel-good story about a brewery closure.

“Carol has been looked up to by a lot of people in our industry - and it’s an honor to continue her legacy [at Stoudts] and introduce authentic German-style beers to a new generation,” said Evil Genius Project Manager Jenna Greb.

Stoudts Brewing Co. Founder Carol Stoudt Raises a Glass

Photos Courtesy Stoudts Brewing Co.

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