From a regional beer to a premium beer known around the world – this is the history of Warsteiner beer, a history still being written by the Cramer family of Warstein. The name Cramer already appeared as early as the sixteenth century in connection with political and economic events in the town of Warstein…

The history of the family of brewers really began in 1753, the first time that the farmer Antonius Cramer had to pay a beer tax of one reichstaler and nineteen guilder – for beer that he had personally brewed and sold. His son Johannes Vitus followed in his footsteps and began to sell self – brewed beer from his home, in the heart of the town of Warstein. The business profited from its central location. However, in 1802, a devastating fire reduced the town of Warstein to ashes – the Cramer residence also fell victim to the flames. The family rebuilt their home as a tavern, inn, and small brewery; the construction of the St. Pancras Church placed it among the town’s most important meeting places. This original home of the Warsteiner brewery, the cathedral tavern, can still be found in the historical center of the town of Warstein.


Today, over 250 years after the brewery’s founding, the small town of Warstein – in the heart of the picturesque natural scenery of Germany’s Sauerland – is the home town of a great beer that is drunk around the world. The Cramer family has succeeded in transforming a regional beer into a premium pilsener that is known around the world. 

Over nine generations, the Cramer family’s strong leadership has successfully turned a regional brew into a global, industry-leading brand. In 2006, the addition of Catharina Cramer to the executive management team signalled a turning point in the company’s history, as she became the first woman to hold such a senior position. Since 2012, after the death of her father Albert Cramer, she is leading the family business in ninth generation.

As the first woman in the company’s history, she successfully manages the brewery as managing partner with Christian Gieselmann, Managing Director Marketing & Sales, Dr. Carsten Rockholtz, Commercial Managing Director, and Peter Himmelsbach, Managing Director Technology.

Catharina Cramer, Owner
© Warsteiner / Catrin Moritz
Christian Gieselmann, Chief Financial Officer
© Warsteiner
Dr. Carsten Rockholtz, Commercial Managing Director
© Warsteiner
Peter Himmelsbach, Chief Technology Officer 
© Warsteiner