Can you imagine?! Ward Parkway and I drove four hours to the other side of the state to visit the Schlafly Brewery and when we pulled up, it was CLOSED! That’s the only reason we went to St. Louis… No, not really. We actually intended to do other “touristy” things as well. Mainly, though, we wanted to make a beer weekend out of it, by visiting both the Schlafly and Anheuser-Busch breweries. You can't even begin to imagine how excited I was to visit the Schlafly plant!! DRAT the luck!
On another down-note, I was slow in getting a reservation request in for the Budweiser Beermaster Tour, which costs $25. The tours on Monday were full, so Ward and I had to opt for the general public Free Tour, which I surmise is “not as cool” as the Beermaster Tour. The website states, “The Beermaster Tour includes a visit to the historic Brew House, Lager Cellars, Bevo Packaging Facility, Finishing Cellars, including a sample directly from a Finishing Tank, and the Budweiser Clydesdale Stable and Tack Room. To commemorate your experience, a variety of gifts are provided for each guest.“
This to me, sounds a lot like the general public Free Tour, except for getting a hit off the finishing tank and the variety of free gifts. I wonder if they pass out a complimentary bong funnel–hose contraption with the new InBev logo?
A fun fact: Although I don’t recall exactly how much beer was in the gi-normous fermentation tanks of beer on the tour, I do remember that if you were to drink one beer every hour for as long as you lived, you’d never be able to drink all of the beer in the tank. The guide said it would take a person like 150 years (or something insane like that) to polish off the tank of beer. I’m pretty sure I could pull it off though. Yes, either me or Homer Simpson.
The tour of the Budweiser brewery was pretty interesting. The historical buildings, the immaculately cared for grounds, the smell of hops(!), and the informative tour guides all made for a nice morning. Yeah, we were on the 10 A.M. tour. Gotta give us a hi-five for drinking our breakfast... Wouldn't have it any. other. way.
At the end of the tour, as expected, everyone of age was treated to two sample glasses of the beers of their choice. Ward Parkway and I enjoyed the Shock Top Belgian White, which reminded us of Coor’s Company’s Blue Moon. We also liked the Beach Bum Blonde Ale.
For lunch we went to a restaurant on, or very near, the Budweiser compound. It was called Sage and the food was fantastic! I was a little disappointed I couldn’t get a Coor’s Light with my meal, but fortunately they did have PLENTY of Anheuser-Busch products on tap… Our waiter assured us that he’d “never heard that joke before.” Thank God! I was worried about being too corny. I settled for a Hoegaarden, which is apparently a part of the Budweiser product line.
Maybe NEXT time I’m in St. Louis, the Schlafly Brewery will be open. I will be anxious to add yet another notch to my cooler.