Sheridan Beer Returns to The Mint
Two of Sheridan’s oldest and most iconic hometown brands, Sheridan Beer and The Mint Bar, were reunited this weekend after more than 60 years with the delivery, via wheelbarrow, of a keg of beer brewed from a resurrected recipe to the town’s oldest bar.
Sheridan Brewing opened for business in 1887. George Paul, Peter Demple, and Arnold Tschirgi had come from Topeka, Kansas, to Sheridan with the explicit purpose of opening a brewery.
Demple’s great-grandson Mark, who heads the new Sheridan Beer Company, spoke about his family history and “the beer brand that built Sheridan” at the relaunch party at Black Tooth Brewing over the weekend.
Peter Demple came to America from Bavaria seeking fortune in 1880. By 1885, he had a successful business in Topeka. So successful, Mark said, that he was able to pay his way out of some situations.
“Yes, our great-grandfather was a bootlegger,” he admitted.
By 1887, Peter Demple and his partners had amassed $10,000 in gold to set up new lives in the West. They sent the gold by railroad to Custer, Montana.
“And from there they brought that gold down in a wagon pulled by horses through Crow country during the Crow War,” Mark said. “So, very risky. But they made it.”
According to information provided by Sheridan Beer, the three men quickly invested in businesses around town, with Peter beginning a career as a banker. Within three years, the friend’s investments in the community accounted for 40 percent of the growth of the town’s infrastructure. They quickly built a brewing empire that shipped more than 60,000 barrels of beer annually at its height.
Saturday around 8 p.m., Monte Buckmaster, co-owner of The Mint Bar, and an excited crowd received the first delivery of Sheridan Beer since the brewery closed in 1952.
In October 2018, Monte and his brother Wes celebrated 28 years of running the legendary Sheridan institution, which first opened for business in 1907.