One of the best free things to do in St. Louis is to take the Budweiser Brewery Tour. My family and I finally took the tour last week. It is infinitely better than the Ben & Jerry’s factory tour in Vermont and not just because you get two free beers at the end. You get to see actual beer being made, not a movie and a replica of the equipment. The tour starts with an up-close look at the Clydesdales.
One of the more interesting stops is the beechwood aging cellar. The beechwood chips, some of which come from Tennessee, help in the carbonation process. I stuck my camera in one of the empty tanks to see what it looked like inside.
Elsewhere along the tour we saw huge brew kettles. The green barrels next to them contain hops that will be added to the wort for flavor. We also saw two production lines, one for bottles and one for cans.
During Prohibition, Anheuser-Busch brewed a “near beer” called Bevo. The Bevo mascot, Renard the Fox, is represented in stone on one building’s corners. I wonder if the sly fox knew some secret way to convert near beer into a full-strength drink.