Detenice Castle & Brewery

It is situated in the Bohemian Paradise area that is nominated to UNESCO.

Order Tour Code: C NN6
Tour availability: Tour available in summer season

Late Baroque chateau is situated at the border of the Bohemian Paradise. You can witness the production of the magic beer brewed on an open fire and filtered through a straw. It is closed in winter.
5-7 HOUR ROUND TRIP

DETENICE CASTLE
In the year 1295 a Gothic stronghold stood in Detenice and its owner lord Benes from Detenice and Wallenstein started the rich history of the castle. Since 1503 Detenice belonged to the powerful Czech noble family Krinecky from Ronov . In 1587 a Renaissance chateau was built here and later in 1619 a bulky tower was added, which has preserved up till now in almost original form.
After the battle of White Mountain the property was confiscated and gained by the powerful nobleman Albrecht from Wallenstein for some 100 years. Very glorious period was the year 1760, when the count Jan Kristian Calm-Gallas purchased the chateau and let the renaissance chateau rebuilt into late Baroque one. In this form it has been preserved up to now.
In 1873 the chateau and the estate were gained by the knights of Malta. Under the Great prior Othenius Lichnovsky from Werdenberg the last structural alternations of the chateau occurred in the course of the years 1878-1881. Maltese knights sold the chateau to the large-scale industrialist Adolf Bloch. The Spanish queen wanted to buy the chateau as well because she fell in love with the chateau during her sojourns here but Vienna did not agree. Rudolf Bloch, the son of Adolf, lost his ownership on the stock market inclusive the chateau Detenice.
Emanuel Rehak (builder of Vranov dam) bought Detenice in an auction in 1927.
In 1948 the chateau was expropriated by the state which let it run wild. In the years 1998-2000 the great restoration of the clutural heritage was under way and the chateau Detenice was reopened at the beginning of the third millenium.
Late baroque chateau Detenice is situated in the distance of 68 km north-east from Prague, at the border of Bohemian Paradise.
Visiting the chateau you can see preserved Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque frescoes and wall painting at secco. You can meet also stucco decoration from times of Rococo and Classicism and enjoy the collections of pictures and weapons. There are wonderful tiled ovens and very interesting furniture together with supplements.
At theentrance gate the Baroque plastic of St. Barbara by M. Braun is situated. In the English Park many rare old trees and scrubs could be seen ( some of them are about 400 years old ).

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DETENICE CASTLE BREWERY
The Detenice brewery produced black 12-degree beer of love according to the recipe of the knight Arthur and light Detenice 10-degree beer. Also, Detenice was the official producer of Gambrinus for the first Pilsner brewery in Pilsen, of which 2.000 hl per year were produced.
The Detenice Castle beer was the pearl among the Czech beers for centuries. Unfortunately, the year 1948 came, and , after that, the dark ages of the Czech brewing industry. Nationalization and later widespread shutting of many breweries occurred. In 1955 the same fate met the Detenice brewery.
Since then, the brewery became deteriorated and neglected until 2000, when new owners bought it and revived the traditional beer production according to the ancient and magic recipe of the marauding knight Arthur. The renovated the brewery into its original shape and condition.
Today, you can admire the beautiful historic cellars, including the memorable Old Cellar.
Secondary Baroque vaults have been installed in it , and, currently, it houses a medieval inn.
You can witness the production of the magic beer of love, as it was produced ages ago, i.e.
Brewed on an open fire, filtered through a straw and fermented and rested in oak vats and kegs. Thanks to this unique historical brewing method, you can now taste the beer as our ancestors used to drink it. Delicious beer. You can also visit the original brewery museum. This unique brewery is definitely worthy of a visit.

HISTORY OF THE DETENICE CASTLE BREWERY
The first mention about brewing beer in Detenice comes from the year 1307, when Benes of Detenice and Valdstein ruled the castle.
The legend tells a story of the marauding knight Arthur, who arrived in Bohemia from some northern country and attacked villages near Stara Boleslav with his group. He always invaded a village and killed all of the men, women and children. Only young virgins were left alive. He stayed in the village until he and his group had eaten all the food available. The virgins had to fulfil all their wishes, and were held as his slaves. Upon each full moon, Arthur always selected the most beautiful virgin, who had to brew a magic beer following a secret recipe of his. So that no one got to know the recipe, he commanded that the tongue of the virgin be cut out the next day. He left the beer sit until the next full moon.
In this manner, he acquired the magic beer and drank a lot of it with his fellow marauders. Apparently the beer provided strength and a superhuman desire for sex, making them commit all of this violence. The knight Arthur was a very cruel and rough man, but many people longed for his drink of love. He won a lot of battles. But in 1307, he marched with his mercenaries over the estate of Detenice. Benes of Detenice and Valdstein, the ruler of Detenice castle or fortress, came with his soldiers to fight against Arthur. They crossed their swords at a place called Na horkach.
Arthur was beaten in a bloody battle and was confined to the Detenice dungeon. No man from his group survived, all were killed. The mighty Benes of Detenice knew about the magic drink and therefore he did not kill Arthur right on the battlefield. He wanted the recipe for the beer. He subjected Arthur to such cruel torture that the marauding knight finally gave up the recipe.
After that, Benes had Arthur buried alive for all his cruelties. When the full moon came, Benes of Detenice asked his beautiful daughter, still a virgin, to brew the magic beer of love in the Old Cellar under the walls of the castle. Since then, beautiful virgins were constantly brewing beer according to the legendary recipe of Arthur the marauding knight in Detenice and for those who drank it, their sexual power increased. Is it true ? Who knows ? Perhaps only the walls of the Old Cellar or the walls of Detenice Castle could confirm or refute this story.
In 1790, the Count of Clam-Gallas built a brewery with lager cellars, a fermentation room, and an ice factory next to the Old Cellar increasing the beer production to 1.000 hl per year.
In 1822, the Baron of Wessenberg added a malt house to the complex.
In 1866, during the Prussian War, when the army marched through Detenice, a Prussian general arrived on horseback in the castle hall and demanded that the brewery cellars be opened up for his soldiers, because he claimed he had heard about the strength of the Detenice beer. The Baron of Wessenberg answered his wish. The Prussian general succumbed to the taste of the beer so much that he din not leave the brewery for a whole week, disregarding the war altogether.
The last construction modifications, especially to the malt house, were performed at the end of the 19th century, under the reign of the Knights of Malta. During that time, production of beer increased to 8.000 hl a year. The prior of the Knights of Malta, Prince Othenio Lichnovsky of Werdenberg and Vostice, supplied the Detenice beer directly to the table of Emperor Franz Josef, and his successor, the Count of Hardek, sent the beer to Spain for the Spanish queen Sophia, who fell love with it while staying in Detenice. During those times, the beer from the castle brewery in Detenice had the reputation of a cherry on cake. Even nowadays, a bottle with the Maltese cross from the Detenice brewery is the most precious piece for collectors of beer bottles. In 1903, the Bloch brothers, large entrepreneurs and sugar plant owner, purchased the brewery. The beer production amounted to 12.000 hl a year.
In 1927, Ing. Rehak, a builder and businessman, bought the brewery. He leased it to Cenek Petak, a brewer. He lavished care on the beer but, nevertheless, beer consumption gradually fell from year to year, the young did not follow in the footsteps of their beer fathers. The output was around 6.000 hl a year, far below the levels before the war. As Petak himself wrote : Perhaps good times will return and the Czech hops will sparkle in the clang of glasses and will be given to our children as our heritage. Then even the brewers will laugh and they will shout : Cheers ! ".

N from Prague, 1,5 hour to drive
Trip:
1)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 - 5-7 hour round trip
Trips combinations:
2)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Kost Castle NN5 - 9 hour round trip
3)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Desna glassworks & Harrachov glassworks & glass museum & microbrewery NN1 - 9 hour round trip
4)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Frydlant castle NN8 - 9 hour round trip
5)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Zakupy chateau CN5 + Desna glassworks & Harrachov glassworks & glass museum & microbrewery NN1 - 13 hour round trip
6)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Desna glassworks & Harrachov glassworks & glass museum & microbrewery NN1 - 11 hour round trip
7)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Sychrov chateau NN2 - 8 hour round trip
8)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Kost castle NN5 - 8 hour round trip
9)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Hruby Rohozec castle NN7 - 8 hour round trip
10)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Sychrov castle NN2 + Detenice castle and brewery (NN5) - 10 hour round trip
11)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Sychrov castle NN2 + Hruby Rohozec castle NN7 - 10 hour round trip
12)Detenice castle and brewery NN6 + Kost castle NN5 + Hruby Rohozec castle NN7 - 10 hour round trip

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Last updated on Feb 20, 2011