The Former Cardinal Brewery – Fribourg

The Former Cardinal Brewery of Fribourg, Switzerland, was founded in 1788 by François Piller. Owner at the «Zum Lachs» hostel, located near the Bern`s Gate in Fribourg, he decides to have a brewery built for his son, freshly graduated as great Bavarian brewer. François Piller was a kind of pioneer, as till that time, only farmer women, then monks, were brewing the beer, with gathered cereals.

From 1802 to 1877, the brewery of Fribourg had many different owners, before to be acquired by Paul-Alcide Blancpain. He allows the brewery to make a huge commercial step forward, and follow its evolution during the development of the growing brewing industry. The brewery is awarded for its art of brewing, in several famous exhibits.

In 1890, for the first time, a bishop of Fribourg is nominated cardinal by the Pope. In order to celebrate the solemnity of this nomination, the Blancpain Brewery brews a celebration beer, the Cardinal. She reaches a great success and Paul Blancpain decides to give the name of that exceptional beer, to his brewery: The Cardinal Brewery.

In 1904, the brewery moves from the Fribourg old town to a site near the train station, without interrupting its production. The Cardinal beer is now well renowned and is a part of the Fribourg identity, as can be the chocolate or the Gruyère cheese.
In 1970, the Cardinal Brewery joins some other breweries to found the Sibra Holding. This one was acquired by the Feldschlösschen-Hürlimann-Holding in 1996.

In 2011, June 22nd, Cardinal bottles its last beer in Fribourg, and Cardinal’s production is transfered from Fribourg to Rheinfelden.
The city and the state of Fribourg get the well located place back. The sales team moves to Villars-sur-Glâne, and the Givisiez site is developed. Finally, the national brand Cardinal follows its development, thanks to a presence in Fribourg and the rest of Switzerland.

The 53000 m2 are now occupied by the Cardinal Beer Museum, and the blueFACTORY, a technologic park stimulating the whole canton. Hosting start-ups and companies to dynamise the region, while integrating the city perfectly.

I would like to thank you the blueFACTORY for authorizing me to photograph this incredible piece of history.
I hope that you liked my photos and will be happy to know a bit more about the story of the former Cardinal Brewery of Fribourg.

Enjoy photography, urban exploration, and be safe!

Urban exploration of private places can be dangerous and illegal. We do not encourage you to explore them without permission.

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