Saturday, June 28, 2014

#139: Anheuser-Busch Brewery

Where do I start here? For real. I guess I can say this is one of St. Louis' beloved icons. There are many things that come to mind when outsiders talk about St. Louis: the baseball, the way we talk, and the brewery. Anheuser-Busch that is! Sure, there are other brew cities, most notably Milwaukee. But since the brands that Anheuser-Busch own continue to thrive, it is the most popular of them all. And its right here in south St. Louis!

Before I talk about the history behind the legendary brewery, I'll first get into what Anheuser-Busch owns, and what the company and the family have owned in the past:
1. Budweiser
2. Busch
3. Michelob
4. Shock Top
5. Rolling Rock
6. Land Shark
7. Natural

There are several spin-offs from the brands mentioned above. For a more detailed list, check out the Wikipedia page for brands owned by Anheuser-Busch.

The 'Busch' name and the brand commonly pop up around the city, sometimes if they are sponsored something, or if they owned it. Either way, it's always nice to know what one empire can do. For instance, Busch Stadium. Or outside of St. Louis, Busch Gardens in Florida. There is a building at SLU named for Busch, and in the zoo, as for other parts of St. Louis.

It started out as a modest place called Bavarian Brewery, which started near the Carondelet area (now South Broadway). Bavarian Brewery was started by German-American brewer George Schneider in 1852. Nearly a decade later, the brewery faced financial issues as it was sold to various people. By 1860, it was sold to William D'Oench and Eberhard Anheuser. D'Oench would sell his share in 1869 after being a silent partner. It would go to Adolphus Busch, who married Anheuser's daughter, and worked for the company and became its secretary. The company was named the Anheuser-Busch Brewing Association in 1879. After Anheuser's death in 1880, Busch took over the company and began to market it to the fullest. Busch was the first American brewer to use pasteurization in order to keep the liquor fresh. He also utilized most of the technology at that time, including the bottling and refrigeration process.

Numerous events and changes have taken place from that time. During Prohibition (the 1920s to the Great Depression), the company, while dealing with a blow, began to sell non-alcoholic beverages. One of them is known as Bevo. The biggest change to date would happen in 2008, when Anheuser-Busch was sold to a Belgian-Brazilian brewing company called InBev (short for Belgian company Interbrew and Brazilian company Ambev, which merged in 2004). Much to the dismay of just about everyone in St. Louis, including its employees, fans, even Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill, the merger happened and the St. Louis company became the North American branch for the newly-named Anheuser-Busch InBev.

Still, the Anheuser-Busch name continues to be iconic, and it still gives St. Louis the rightful name as a 'brew city'.
A view of the Anheuser-Busch brewery from Compton Hill water tower
And now......the cake! What one would expect, has Anheuser-Busch all over it. In such a great celebratory way, that is. Ian Greenlee and Julie Krovicka had the right idea.
Back side of the cake

Left side of the cake

Left side of the cake

Top of the cake

The cake sold for $1,505 (highest bid for a cake through the auction!). According to Julie Krovicka (one of the artists), the men driving the beer truck on the cake was an inside joke, as the guy on the right is supposed to be a depiction of her husband, which was painted by her son Ian!

Anheuser-Busch on FB
Anheuser-Busch Wikipedia link
Official website

1200 Lynch Street, ST. LOUIS, MO, 63118
Cake artists: Ian Greenlee and Julie Krovicka

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