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Baderbräu To Open South Loop Brewery By Memorial Day

SOUTH LOOP — Baderbräu Brewery is returning to Chicago, and just in time for summer. 

The once defunct brewer will open its new South Loop tap room next month, with plans for a grand opening "block party" May 29, its owners told neighbors last week. 

The opening will culminate a long, strange trip back to Chicago for Baderbräu, whose maker went bankrupt in 1997 and whose pilsner had previously been out of production for years. The new brewery and tap room coming to 2515 S. Wabash Ave. had been expected to open last year before getting caught in delays

Now, that tap room is only about 20 days from completion, said Rob Sama, who is bringing Baderbräu back. Sama grew fond of the "crushable" Czech-style pilsner while studying at the University of Chicago.

"It changed the world of beer for Chicago, at a time when the only decent beer you could find was either an import from Europe or a Sam Adams," Sama writes on the brewer's website

Sama was able to find its recipe through Baderbräu's original brewmaster, Douglas Babcook, an elderly man who lives in Canada. Then Sama snapped up the beer's trademark. The pilsner was originally brewed in the '80s out of suburban Elmhurst. 

Once open, the Baderbräu brewery will join other new breweries in the neighborhood, including Vice District and Motor Row. 

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