Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The last brewmaster now collects beer memorabilia |

La Crosse's last Heileman brewmaster now collects beer memorabilia:
"the last Heileman brewmaster, and that makes Randy Hughes a part of history. That's one of the reasons that Hughes, now brewmaster for City Brewery, is such an avid collector of breweriana.
That's all things beer - steins, cans, bottles, trays, openers, signs, coasters and more."

"I wish I'd been a little more aware of the long and deep history of the place when I started here. There were guys still working here who had started in the '30s." By the time Hughes got interested, they were retired. And by the time he became a serious collector, much of the best stuff had already been snapped up. "I wish I would have paid a little more attention," he said. "It got a lot more serious for me when I realized I was a piece of collecting history myself. I'm the last Heileman brewmaster in La Crosse. I like the history behind it."
He's paying attention now and is always on the lookout for old metal advertising signs from pre-Prohibition. "You've got to specialize," he said. Otherwise, it's overwhelming. So he's focused on all the brands his own company has brewed and anything local, such as Gund memorabilia.

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