On the Trail of D.C.'s First Brewmaster - Atlas Obscura

Alexandria, Virginia

On the Trail of D.C.'s First Brewmaster

Walk in the footsteps of the District's first brewer, Andrew Wales.

Join Atlas Obscura and Capital Beer author Garrett Peck as we raise a glass to Andrew Wales, D.C.'s first brewmaster. 

In November 2015, a stunning discovery was made during the excavation for the Hotel Indigo in Old Town Alexandria: the fully intact remnants of the 1755 Town Warehouse. This building served as Alexandria's first commercial brewery (and D.C.'s, since Alexandria was part of the District until 1846) when Scottish immigrant Andrew Wales leased the space in 1770.

Our walking tour will feature three of Wales' Old Town brewing sites, his long-running commercial relationship with George Washington, and rare brewing artifacts in the Alexandria Archaeology Museum.

Those with time after the tour can accompany Garrett for lunch and a beer at a nearby restaurant (cash bar).  


  • This location is a 23 minute walk from the King Street Station (Yellow/Blue line) and accessible via the several different bus lines. There is also a free King Street Trolley that runs every 10 minutes from the Metro station to the Waterfront. For more information check WMATA's website.
  • Although street parking is always available, parking enforcement in Old Town is fairly strict. There is a parking lot under City Hall (Fairfax at Cameron) for only $5 for the entire day. Neither Atlas Obscura nor Garrett Peck validate parking. 
  • This is a 1 1/2 hour, outdoor walking tour.
  • Please dress for the weather and wear good walking shoes for walking on uneven surfaces and cobblestone streets.
  • This tour is rain-or-shine. 


Contact Julie Seigel at julie.seigel@atlasobscura.com

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