Hommel Beer Factory
BIA HOI CULTURE'S ORIGIN: FROM A COLONICAL DRINKING TO A CULTURE OF URBAN DWELLERS
Before the French colonization, Vietnam had a long history of rice alcohol production. The beer industry was created in 1892 by Alfred Hommel, founder of Hommel Brewery (Brasserie Hommel) in Hanoi. Along with the Larue Brewery (Brasserie Larue) in Saigon, the Hommel Brewery was one of the two biggest breweries in Indochina.
Beer was the drink that seemed most suitable in the Indochina climate. At first, beer was mainly consumed by the French, then it became more and more popular with local Vietnamese people.
Besides water, the ingredients used by the Hommel Brewery were malted barley and hops imported from Europe and a proportion of rice (preferably denitrogenated). The difficulty was not in the purchase of ingredients of first quality, but in purifying water used, acquiring expensive brewing equipment, and adapting it to the hot and humid climate of Hanoi. Another challenge for the production of bottled beer was transportation. The brewery came up with the idea of producing a draft beer called bia hoi sold in kegs instead of bottles. Over time, bia hoi became a staple of Vietnamese culture and it remains so to this day.
Name: Brasserie Hommel / Société de la Brasserie Hommel / Société des Brasseries et Glacières de l'Indochine / Hanoi Brewery / Hanoi Brewery Company / Hanoi Beer-Alcohol-Beverage Corporation (Habeco)
Location: 183 Hoang Hoa Tham, Ha Noi
Architectural and Urban preliminary assessment
Perspective / Thematic / Narrative point of view
[Tran Hung Dao Mechanical Factory] Fortuned Palimpsest
Tran Hung Dao Mechanical Factory, formerly known as Kien Thiet Camp, was founded on April 19th, 1947 in Vinh Quang commune, Tuyen Quang province to serve Vietnam’s prolonged resistance.
After signing the Geneva Accords, like many “guerrilla factories” in Viet Bac, Tran Hung Dao mechanical factory relocated to 191 Ba Trieu street, Hanoi in 1956. On this site, once was the Indochine Match Factory, which was built by the French in 1890 on the “abandoned fortuned-ground” of the Nam Giao Altar from the Ly Dynasty.
This is a story about one of the pieces of land that is constantly forgotten and overwritten in the history of Hanoi.