Pilsengold Beer

The San Francisco Brewing Corporation opened its doors in 1907 as the Andromeda Saloon and Brew Pub, and was one of the first four brew pubs in America. It was situated along the Barbary Coast, which was a red light district in San Francisco that was born during the California Gold Rush of 1849. The area was home to dance halls, saloons, bars, jazz clubs, variety shows and brothels. The saloon was an instant hit where “angling executives, sharp-talking politicians and homesick sailors all rubbed elbows while brazen prostitutes flaunted coquettish charms at the brass rail of the ornate bar.”

Given its location, rich with a variety of cultures, it is no wonder the Andromeda has a few interesting stories to tell:

  • In 1913, Jack Dempsey (who would reign as the Heavyweight Boxing Champion from 1919-1926) worked as a bouncer and peacekeeper.
  • Baby Face Nelson, the famous bank robber who is notorious for killing more FBI agents than any other criminal, was captured by the feds in the pub in 1939.

The brewery was one of only a handful to survive prohibition in the area, and it did so by rebranding itself as the Andromeda Cafe, a classy restaurant serving high end seafood and shellfish, all while discreetly continuing to serve alcoholic beverages.

In 1936, the brewery was the fifth largest in the San Francisco, driven primarily by its Burgmeister beer. Pilsengold was produced between 1936 and 1952 and was one of the brewery’s many secondary labels.

In 1977 the pub was renovated and renamed the Albatross Saloon and still boasted the original solid mahogany plank bar! Over the next several decades, it underwent multiple name and ownership changes, but in 2010 was established as the Comstock Saloon. Two years later, and at a different location, a pair of brew masters began brewing under the San Francisco Brewing Company brand, and to date have released four brews which are popular around the bay area.