St. Louis Brewery is America’s Largest Beer Maker
The famous brewing factory offers daily tours that focus on the storied heritage of the company, the unique architecture of the brewery itself, and the state-of-the-art technology used in creating its various brands. Guests 21 years of age or older are invited to sample Anheuser-Busch products in the brewery’s hospitality room after the tour, including both new and seasonal products, while gift shops sell souvenirs of all sorts. There is also a chance to see the nearby Budweiser Clydesdale Stable, Beechwood Lager Cellars, Bevo Packaging Facility, and historic Brew House.
With roots dating to 1852, Anheuser-Busch is headquartered in St. Louis, MO. The company makes more than 100 beers, including the top 2 sellers in the USA.
In 1864, Adolphus Busch went to work at a brewery owned by his father-in-law, Eberhard Anheuser. 15 years later, the company changed its name to Anheuser-Busch. Fueled by the popularity of its top-selling product, Budweiser, the brewery would grow to become the biggest in the nation. It didn’t get to be #1 by accident.
Innovations Lead to Early Success of Brewery
Several factors helped St. Louis based beer makers become popular. Adolphus Busch made use of pasteurization, the practice of introducing heat to the brewing process. The pasteurization of beer helped destroy micro-organisms within the beer, which gave it longer shelf life. Combined with a fleet of 850 refrigerated rail cars, Busch was able to ship his beer great distances from the St. Louis brewery.
Prior to the 1880s, the only options for saloon patrons of the American west were locally brewed beer, or whiskey, which didn’t spoil in the bottle the way beer would. With the introduction of the pasteurization process and the refrigerated rail cars, Busch could slake the thirsts of miners, cowboys, and frontiersmen in the remote western regions of the country. No other brewer of the day used these methods of brewing and delivery, and Budweiser gained a loyal following that it still enjoys today.
Busch Uses Clever Marketing to Sell Beer
In addition to his prowess as a brewmaster, Adolphus Busch was a marketing and promotional expert. Even in those early days, he saw the value of advertising as a way to develop brand loyalty. While other brewers relied on the word-of-mouth method of advertising, Busch developed other methods. Posters, featuring beautiful women holding Budweiser bottles, would hang on tavern walls. Busch also gave away items sporting the Budweiser name. Cheap pocket knives would be handed out to prospective customers, who would see the Budweiser name whenever they used the knife.
The company that he co-founded has continued the practice of clever advertising. Various different advertising campaigns have promoted Bud, Bud Light, and other Anheuser-Busch products. The company has also made use of some easily identifiable logos and mascots. The A and Eagle have been with the company since its founding and has undergone slight modifications over the years. In 1933, the six-hitch Clydesdale team made its debut, and the Clydesdale pulling a beer wagon is a common sight that is instantly identifiable with Bud. The Dalmatian dog got his first ride on the beer wagon in 1950.
Bud, Busch and the Future of Beer
Since its founding in St. Louis, through the Prohibition years of the 20s and 30s, and right on up to today, Anheuser-Busch has changed with the times and rolled with the punches. They control almost half of the beer market in the United States, with Bud Light being the most popular beer in the country and Budweiser topping the worldwide bestseller list.
It is difficult to imagine a world without beer. It’s just as hard to imagine the circumstances that would have to happen to displace Anheuser-Busch from its position as America’s biggest selling brewery. As long as people thirst for beer, the future of Anheuser-Busch seems secure. Long live the King.
One Busch Place
St. Louis, MO 63118
The free tours are offered and for those that are over age 21, there is free sampling in the hospitality room at the conclusion of the tour. See how the beer is made in the Brew House suilt in 1891, visit the Beechwood Aging Cellars, and the state-of-the-art packaging facility.
Adults can enjoy two free glasses of any Anheuser-Busch product in the Hospitality Room at the end of the tour. Tourists can see beer being made live in front of them in hot and steamy vats in a working part of the brewery (from behind Plexiglas shields).
St. Louis is the worldwide headquarters for Anheuser-Busch.
The tours begin with a visit to the home of the Clydesdales eight-horse hitch, which is one of the historic landmarks on the property. The company keeps a rotation of its famous Clydesdale horses at its headquarters, and visitors to the brewery can observe the Clydesdales in their exercise field and see their places in the carriage house. The bulk of the herd is kept at the company farm in St. Louis County. The farm, known to many a St. Louisan as Grant’s Farm (having been owned by former President Ulysses S. Grant at one time.)
The atrium welcomes visitors with a visual tour of the beginning of the company. Pictures walk you through the early days and end in the present.
Anheuser-Busch began as a small brewery located in St. Louis, Missouri. In 1860, Eberhard Anheuser, a German-born prosperous soap manufacturer, became the owner of the struggling brewery. Adolphus Busch, Anheuser’s son-in-law, became a partner in 1869 and became president when Anheuser died in 1880.
Adolphus Busch was the first U.S. brewer to use pasteurization to keep beer fresh, the first to use artificial refrigeration and refrigerated railroad cars, and the first to bottle beer extensively. In 1876, Busch introduced America’s first national beer brand – Budweiser.
Anheuser-Busch became the largest brewer in the United States in 1957.
Anheuser-Busch’s international operations, Anheuser-Busch International, Inc., was established in 1981 and is responsible for the company’s foreign beer operations and equity investments.
Today, Anheuser-Busch operates 12 breweries and several theme parks in the United States and has operations around the world
Location: 12th and Lynch St. Louis, Missouri Take I-55 to Arsenal St. Exit 206C
Anheuser Museum & Estate – Kimmswick, Mo
Fred and Mabel Ruth Anheuser’s ancestral home is located in Kimmwsick. This historic estate was gifted to Fred and Mabel Ruth in the 1940′s by his father, W. Fred Anheuser. Fred’s great grandfather, Eberhard Anheuser, was the founder of E.Ahneuser Brewing Company. The brewery later became the Anheuser-Busch Brewing Company, producer of world-famous Budweiser Beer, after Eberhard’s daughter Lillie married Adolphus Busch. Fred was the last Anheuser to work the brewery retiring as a Vice-President.
Through the generosity of Mabel Ruth and her heirs, this pristine river estate and its 23-acre grounds were donated to the City of Kimmswick. With the help of the Anheuser heirs, family and brewery artifacts and other memorabilia have been preserved for public viewing in honor of the contributions that the Anheuser family made to Kimmswick and the entire St. Louis region.
The Anheuser collection includes family heirlooms, antiques, portraits, and a family library. Accenting the collection are Mrs. Anheuser’s Westward Ho Crystal collection, a pair of 1904 hand-carved World’s Fair beds, and an original “Feasting Fox” perched on the bluffs overlooking the mighty Mississippi.