Slaghmuylder Brewery was founded in 1860 by Emmanuel Slaghmuylder in the city centre of Ninove. Until then, Emmanuel was a grain merchant.
The first brew of lager was produced in February 1860. One month later, beer carts were rolling through the streets with wooden crates and barrels, bearing the initials ‘ES’. These initials determined the first names of Emmanuel’s successors for two generations. In this way, no new materials had to be purchased.
When Emmanuel died in 1885, his son, Ernest, took over the successful business.
14 years later, he married Marie Van Roy, a daughter of a brewer’s family in Wieze. They had 5 children: Emile (°1900), Edmond (°1901), Irena (°1902), Paula-Juliana (°1903), and Edouard (°1905).
Ernest started the modernisation process. He installed a steam boiler, a steam engine, a bottling facility and a cooling and filter installation. When Ernest passed away in 1921, Marie took charge.
The buildings in the city centre were becoming too small, so a new location was needed. In 1920, abbey land was purchased from the Abbey of Saint-Cornelius and Saint-Cyprian in Ninove. On this land, they built the current brewery, which was completed in 1926. The 3 brothers, Emile, Edmond and Edouard, started brewing on the new site, according to a new brewing process for a lager; the bottom fermentation beer.
On the occasion of the St. Cornelius parade during Pentecost, a special beer was brewed: Cornel Beer. It was a refined lager that was much appreciated by the inhabitants of Ninove.
During the war, the brewery returned to top-fermented beer production (24°C). Less energy was needed to cool down the beer. It took until 1958 before Slag Pils, Helles, and Tafelhell - beers of bottom fermentation - were produced again. Marie passed away in 1957 at the age of 90.
5 years after the 100th anniversary of the brewery, the three brothers were succeeded by their sons.
Philippe, son of Emile, was in charge of the accountancy and administration.
Everard, son of Edouard, took care of the technical installations and sales service.
Michel, son of Edmond, was in charge of the brewing process, the quality of the beers and the purchase of raw materials.
Since 1979, Witkap-Pater has been brewed in Ninove at the request of Brewery ‘De Drie Linden’ in Brasschaat. The Witkap-Pater range consisted of Stimulo, Dubbel and Tripel. 2 years later, Slaghmuylder Brewery officially takes over the brand name and recipes.
"Horum omnium fortisimi sunt Belgae", which means “Belgians are the bravest of them all”. Slaghmuylder Brewery welcomes a new beer. The first brew of Ambiorix is a fact! Ambiorix is a dark reddish-brown beer (7,5% vol.) of top fermentation with refermentation in the bottle.
Also in 1985, Cornel is being brewed again as a jubilee beer to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the brewery, 200th anniversary of Café De Keizer, 25th anniversary of carnival and 350th anniversary of the foundation stone of the Abbey in Ninove.
The Witkap-Pater Special was specially brewed for the "European Championship Bellemannen" in 2004 in Ninove. It is an amber beer (5,5% vol.) of top fermentation. This is the current Witkap -Pater Special.
Brewer, Michel Slaghmuylder, passed away in 2006. He is succeeded to date by his son-in-law, Luc Verhaegen.
Since 2012, only Michel Slaghmuylder’s branch of the family continues the brewery.
This is also the start of the modernisation of machinery. In 2019, amongst other installations, the first fully automatic steam sterilising filling machine on the European mainland (1946) was replaced by a modern gem to guarantee quality. There were also new investments for a new centrifuge, steam boiler, barrel filler and new crates and barrels.
Today, Slaghmuylder Brewery is a unique family business, in which the 5th and 6th generation builds upon tradition while looking forward to the future where quality will always prevail.