Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop is reportedly the oldest bar in New Orleans. Tourists flock to the place to drink by the flicker of gas lamps and candlelight, and soak up NOLA history as thoroughly as one can from the perch of a bar stool.
St. Paul is soon to have its own “oldest bar.” Waldmann, a “brewery and wurstery," will be housed in St. Paul’s oldest commercial structure, built in 1857.
While digging into the history of the building, proprietor Tom Schroeder found that the structure was opened as a limestone saloon by one Anthony Waldmann. Waldmann was one of a number German and Bavarian countrymen who ran German lager houses and saloons in the neighborhood prior to the Civil War. Check out some intriguing Wikipedia history on the structure here. (Indeed, Schmidt Brewery on West Seventh Street was run by Bavarians who were among St. Paul’s earliest and most successful brewers.)
Schroeder has been meticulously restoring the building and plans to re-open it after 154 years, “welcoming all with the warmth of woodfire, lamplight, and house-made lagers and sausages."
Waldmann is expected to open this fall, but there is an upcoming Kickstarter party to help them get through the final stretch. On Thursday, April 20, at 7:30, you can go, check out the digs, hear some live music, and support the cause.
445 Smith Ave., St. Paul