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Take a Tour of the Anheuser Busch Brewery in St. Louis


You can't talk about beer in St. Louis without Anheuser Busch. The world famous brewery has been a part of the city's landscape for more than 150 years. The best way to learn about Anheuser Busch and its beer-making process is by taking a free tour of the AB Brewery in Soulard.

If you're looking for other things to do without spending money, check out the Top 15 Free Attractions in St. Louis.

When and Where:

The Anheuser Busch Brewery in St. Louis offers free tours seven days a week. Tours run Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. There are extended summer hours until 5 p.m., from May through August. Each tour lasts about an hour.

The AB Brewery is located at 1127 Pestalozzi Street in the Soulard neighborhood. For the tours, go to the entrance at 12th and Lynch Streets.

What You'll See:

There are three main things you'll see on a tour. First is the Budweiser Cyldesdales and their stable. Then, it's a walk through the brewing and bottling areas to see where Budweiser, Bud Light and other brands are made, and finally a trip to the tasting room for two free samples of AB products. You'll also learn a lot about the history of the company and how it grew into the brewing giant that it is today.

What to Know:

The AB Brewery is a large facility and there's a lot of walking, so be sure to wear comfortable, closed toe shoes. Also, try to dress for the weather because some of the tour is outdoors. Children can go on the tour (and many do), but its not a good place to be pushing a stoller around, and small kids may get tired before the tour is over.

As you might expect, Anheuser Busch does things in a big way even with its tours. Groups can be quite large and tours move pretty quickly. There won't be time to stop and chat with the brewmaster about the quality of the hops. If you're looking for a smaller, more personalized brewery tour try Schlafly.

The Extras:

If you don't mind spending a little money, you can sign up for Beer School before you take a tour. The half-hour class includes tastings, pouring demonstrations, souvenirs and information about the brewing process. Beer School classes are $10 a person and are available on a first-come, first served basis.

Another option is the Brewmaster Tour which offers a more in-depth, behind the scenes look at brewery operations. The Brewmaster Tour is $25 for those 21 and older, and $10 for those ages 13 to 20. Children younger than 13 can not take the Brewmaster Tour. For additional information on Beer School or the Brewmaster Tour, call 314-577-2626.

Parking & Transportation:

The AB Brewery is easy to get to, just off Interstate 55 south of Downtown St. Louis. There is no Metrolink stop nearby, so taking the train is not a good option. MetroBuses do run to Soulard, but with plenty of free parking, the best option for many is to drive.

Other Soulard Attractions:

The AB Brewery is located in Soulard, an historic neighborhood just south of Downtown St. Louis. The neighborhood hosts a popular Mardi Gras celebration in February and an Oktoberfest party in October. The Soulard Farmers Market also draws crowds year round.

Popular Soulard Restaurants:

If you're hungry before or after your tour, Soulard has some great restaurants that are worth a try. Bar-b-que lovers should try Bogarts Smokehouse for its fantastic brisket, pulled pork and ribs. McGurk's Irish Pub has been a popular destination for decades with its upscale pub grub, cold Guinness and authentic Irish music. Another good bet is Molly's where you'll find drink specials, a wide variety of bistro fare and live music.

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