World War II

World War II

When World War II engulfed Slovenia in 1941, Pivovarna Laško went through great changes. The Germans took control over the brewery, replaced the management and for the next four years bottled and exported beer. This was a period of mixed feelings for the brewery, as, on one hand, all the sovereignty and independence of beer brewing was lost, and on the other hand, the brewery's business was better than ever. Under the rule of the German occupiers, the brewery then produced almost 93,000 hl of beer each year, a quantity that was again reached only in 1963. According to some, the enviable quantities were achieved by diluting beer with water. The principal beers at that time were the Thermal beer, also known as Thermalbier, the March beer or Märzen Bier, and the export dark beer Zlatorog Goldhorn Export.

 

In the years 1944 and 1945, the story again changed in a completely different direction. When the Allied forces tried to bomb the railway bridge in Laško, the brewery was accidentally hit two times by the bombs, and after the second attack in 1945, it was completely demolished.

Soon after the bombing renovation works begun and within a year Pivovarna Laško was operational again and back in Slovenian hands. During those times the main beer brand was the widely known Zlatorog. This name was suggested, according to some testimonies among shareholders in the Innkeepers cooperative who competed to renovate the brewery, by writer Janez Jalen.

 

Laško is a beer with tradition. We have been brewing it for more than 185 years.
In 1889, after the company declared bankruptcy, it was purchased by a brewer from Žalec, Simon Kukec. This nationally conscious Slovenian went down in the Laško brewing history as an excellent organizer, financier and entrepreneur, fond of novelties. He established a new type of beer and the first beer brand - the thermal beer, which still exists today in a slightly different form.