Established in 1998, RavenBeer is a Baltimore-based craft beer, inspired by the Baltimore poet, Edgar Allan Poe. RavenBeer currently brews 6 different craft beer brands in multiple styles. Current distribution is in Maryland, District of Columbia, Delaware, Pennsylvania,, South Carolina and Virginia.
RavenBeer is brewed in honor of the great American writer, Edgar Allan Poe, who, through his pen, eloquently expressed himself like no other. Through his exquisite poems, short stories and criticisms, Poe captured the imagination of the world. The Raven is brewed in Baltimore, the home of Poe, in honor of this classic poem. A master of the macabre, Poe is captured in the RavenBeer portfolio.
From 1843-1848, he wrote 'The Tell-Tale Heart', 'The Black Cat', 'The Pit and the Pendulum' and the prize winning 'The Gold Bug'. In 1845, Poe published 'Tales' and 'The Raven' and 'Annabel Lee', published 2 days after his death on Oct. 9, 1849. The strain of business failures and the tragic death of his wife from consumption led to a nervous breakdown and to his early death in Baltimore on October 7, 1849.
RavenBeer’s Cask was voted 3rd best beer crafted by Maryland breweries by Maryland Brewers Association of MD. They have garnered Gold medals in Case Box Design and Tap Handle Creativity by Tastings.com, and were named one of USA’s Top 23 Craft Beer Tap Handles in America by Thrillist.com.
Our beer was first conceived in Luxembourg between founders Stephen Demczuk and Wolfgang Stark. Stephen was in Europe doing research in molecular biology and experienced its beer culture that lead to his mid-career crisis. He started writing about beer, and then tried to open a brewery in Arlon, Belgium but that faltered. He then formed the first beer-of-the-month club in Europe, Beer Around the World. Importing beer into Luxembourg, boxing it up and shipping it within the EU. One supplier of his beers was Wolfgang Stark of Haus de 131 Biere. Wolfgang imported beer from all over the world. He supplied Ngoma from Togo, Flame from New Zealand, and Lapin Kulta from Finland.
One day Wolfgang asked Stephen if he would like to make a beer in Germany and using an American marketing theme. It took Stephen just a second to say 'yes' and a day to come up with The Raven. The new company was registered in Baltimore and the new beer was eventually produced in Nagold, Germany and called in honor of Baltimore's Edgar Allan Poe The Raven Special Lager.
Stephen presently serves on the Board of Poe Baltimore, a city private partnership running the operations of the Edgar Allan Poe House in Baltimore, Maryland.
Ernie is legendary in the beer business. After graduating from the University of the Philippines with a degree in chemical engineering in 1975, he worked at San Miguel Brewery for 21 years. At San Miguel he moved up through the ranks to become a Brewmaster and manager overseeing day-to-day operations of 11 breweries and 2 brewpubs in the Philippines, China, Indonesia and Vietnam.
In 1986, he placed 3rd at the Versuchs-und-Lehranstalt fur Brauerei (VLB) course in Berlin, Germany. He then went to Bitburg and brewed at the famous Germany brewery near Luxembourg, Bitburg Brauerei.
In 1997 he moved to the US and worked side by side Stephen Demczuk to brew RavenBeer. To this day, he serves as our Brewmaster
He resides with his wife and 3 kids in Olney, Montgomery County.