Famous for its beer, baseball, and The Blues hockey team, St. Louis has a lot more to offer than just a few late-night sports games and brews. We take you through some of the best breweries in St Louis, that you should give a try and must visit when in Missouri.
Have you ever wondered how beer is produced and sold? In this article, we’ll take you through the methods, techniques, and some of the best breweries all across St Louis, Missouri.
What is a Brewery
A brewery or a brewing company is a business that produces and sells beer. A brewery is basically divided into distinct sections, with each section reserved for each and every part of the brewing process.
Brewing is divided mainly into different types: milling, malting, mashing, lautering, boiling, separation, fermenting, conditioning, filtering, and filing.
The first step in brewing is malting, wherein the fresh barley is kept to get soaked in water and is then placed in germinating boxes to germinate.
This process of germination is interrupted at the optimal stage by drying. The green malt is dried carefully at a temperature of 80 degrees celsius and tastes a little sweet after it is dried. The malt sugar then serves to feed the yeast cultures, which then form the alcohol.
The finished malt is milled so that it dissolves better in water. Malt mills produce various grades of crushed malt: husks, groats, meal, semolina, and powder.
The milled malt is mixed with water in the mash tun – mashing-in. The starch in the grist dissolves and sugar, protein, and tannin are released. The malt extract is thus produced by this mashing process.
This step includes the mash being filtered in the lauter tun as the husks sink and the wort is separated from the solid substances. The wort is then further used during brewing, whereas those solid substances (spent grains) are generally used as cattle fodder.
This process is mainly where the taste of the beer kicks in.
The brewing pan or wort kettle is boiled and the hops are added. The taste depends on the type and quantity of the hops used. The fewer hops, the less bitter the beer.
Separation and Cooling
The work produced is now fed into the whirlpool and starts to rotate. The trub generated in the previous step forms a cone in the middle of the container, and the clear wort can then be tapped off at the side.
The clear wort is then cooled at a temperature between 10-20 degree celsius in the cooler.
This method occurs in a fermentation tank where special brewing yeast is added. The yeast turns the malt sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide. Depending on the type of yeast and the wort preparation used a top or bottom-fermented beer is produced.
During this stage, any substances still remaining after fermentation and secondary fermentation, such as yeast particles, hop resin, and protein are extracted and the beer gets its final clear color.
In this final stage, bottled beer and cans from Braeu am Berg is filled in the filling station Starzinger. Barrels are filled directly in the brewery.
Best Breweries in St Louis
Here are some of the best breweries in St Louis, that you should give a try and must visit when in Missouri.
1. Anheuser-Busch Brewery
Started off by a German immigrant Adolphus Busch, the brewery opened in 1852 and is now designated as a National Historic Landmark District. The Anheuser-Busch Brewery is considered to be one of the best breweries in St Louis and is ranked first on our list.
Have you ever dreamt of meeting a Clydesdale horse? Make it a reality now, pay a visit to the Anheuser-Busch brewery. They follow the legacy that transcends beer, and they take pride in the World-Renowned Budweiser Clydesdales. All guests 21 and older get to enjoy great beer and good food during the tour.
The Anheuser Busch Brewery public tour offers tourists the chance to experience the culture native to St Louis.
Span across 142 acres of land, this brewery is one of the oldest and largest brewery sites.
If you’re also Budweiser’s biggest fan, there’s nothing stopping you from getting the Beermaster Tour, an all-access look at how the King of Beers is brewed, and a chance to visit exclusive locations on campus.
What is the best part of this? You get to visit their Finishing Cellars to enjoy a sample of the freshest beer ever tasted, poured directly from the finishing tank.
2. Schlafly Beer
Ranked second among the best breweries in St Louis on our list, is Schlafly Beer popularly and commonly known as the St Louis Brewery, Schlafly Beer is St Louis’ largest independent craft brewery and is considered to be the second-best brewery, Schlafly Bottleworks brews more than 60 styles of beer.
Opened in 1991, Schlafly Beer now operates as three brewpubs, Schlafly Tap Room, Schlafly Bottleworks, and Schlafly Bankside. Each of these is basically a microbrewery with an on-site pub offering small-batch beer cheese soup, live music, and tours.
It was started by Lawyers Tom Schlafly and Charles Kopman, who decided to get bring the traditional styles of beer back to the United States.
If all you’re looking for is craft brews from the original craft beer pioneers, you must pay Schlafly Bottleworks and Schlafly Tap Room a visit.
Both of these microbreweries have been equally considered the best beer, and are a must-visit for a craft beer enthusiast. They recently opened their third location in historic downtown St Charles, Schlafly Bankside.
Schlafly Bottleworks: 7260 Southwest Ave, St. Louis, MO 63143, United States
Schlafly Tap Room: 2100 Locust St, St. Louis, MO 63103, United States
3. Perennial Artisan Ales
Coming up third on our best breweries in St Louis list is a small-batch brewery that offers a tasting room with craft beer and bites that are inventive in a warehouse setting.
The small-batch brewery has a loyal following, who flock to the Carondelet tasting room to enjoy such popular brews as the Vermillion, Barleywine, Abraxas stout, and Maman imperial stout.
Abraxas is their most popular beer which is an Imperial Stout with ancho chili peppers, cacao nibs, vanilla beans, and cinnamon sticks, but if Stouts aren’t your style Perennial still will have something you can fall in love with.
Perennial Artisan Ales in the quiet Carondelet neighborhood hopes to fill a special niche in the St. Louis beer scene. They have a wide selection of beers that helps in easily providing something and makes it easier to choose something for everyone.
The food is great, make sure you try the deviled eggs they are second to nothing on this earth.
Using local, seasonal ingredients and brewing in small batches, this brewing co isn’t afraid to mix it up with releases like the Grace Hominy Lager, a Mexican-style beer brewed with hominy sourced and cooked by Grace Meat + Three, a local eatery with a southern fare.
4. Six Mile Bridge Brewery
Up fourth on our list of the best breweries in St Louis bringing the spirit of a small Irish town along with a selection of brews that boast distinctive flavors is Six Mile Bridge Brewery.
Born in 2015 out of the passion and enthusiasm of Ryan and Lindsay Sherring.
Ryan, a South African native, began his brewing journey in 2012 when he founded 021 Brewing Company in Cape Town focusing on quality ales. His wife, Lindsay, a St. Louis native and avid stout enthusiast soon joined the brewery as marketing director — marrying two of her passions, marketing, and beer.
Their regular lineup includes a Bavarian Hefeweizen, Irish Red Ale, French Saison, Irish Stout, and Red IPA.
Comprising bourbon, port, wine, and even maple barrels, their barrel program ages a variety of beers from Belgian Quads to imperial stouts to wild beers. Served exclusively in the restaurant when they decide they’re ready.
This is a place that honors, believes, and acknowledges friendship anniversaries or relationship anniversaries, wedding anniversaries, in short everything that involves bonding and building on old relationships since the brewery concept was born in Africa but raised in the US, it is a brewery built with one thing in mind, community.
5. Urban Chestnut Midtown Brewery and Biergarten
A local brew pub offering light fares such as pretzels, meats, and cheeses to pair with its craft beer, is the Urban Chestnut Midtown Brewery and Biergarten, ranked fifth on our list of the best breweries in St Louis.
The Midtown Brewery & Biergarten, which opened in January 2011, is situated in an old 1920’s garage in the Grand Center neighborhood of St. Louis.
This microbrewery has an extensive menu of good food, beers, and guest beers that is met best with their outdoor space, perfect for meetups and best single local craft beers.
This German-style brewery has a very traditional tap list and classic Biergarten vibes. The location is next to amazing! A good beer to drink, they usually have live music. Very cute biergarten. Great spot to gather with friends.
6. 2nd Shift Brewing Co.
Coming up sixth on our list of the best breweries in St Louis is 2nd Shift Brewing Co, which was established in 2009, and built a following while located in New Haven, Missouri, before making its much-celebrated move to the historic St. Louis Hill neighborhood in 2016.
Since then it has continued to wow the city with its innovative brews that are full of character. 2nd Shift has a core lineup that’s offered year-round and includes some of the brewery’s most popular titles, such as Katy (an American Brett Saison) and Art of Neurosis (an American IPA).
This is why it is considered to be among one of the best breweries in St Louis.
7. Ferguson Brewing Co.
This brewing company which was established in 2010 as Hill brewing company, changed its name in 2011 to cement its ties to the supportive Ferguson Community and is ranked seventh on our list of the best breweries in St Louis.
Stop into this Ferguson-based brewery for a classic brewpub dish or handcrafted beer. Two of the brewery’s staples include the Pecan Brown Ale, an American Brown ale made with seven different malts, and the St. Louis Pale Ale, brewed with locally grown and Cascade leaf hops.
Depending on the day, guests can try one of the brewery’s small batch releases, only available on tap in the tasting room. Keep an eye on the Ferguson Brewing Company Facebook page to catch these limited-time brews and pop-up food offerings.
8. Alpha Brewing Company
Ranking eighth on our list of the best breweries in St Louis is a small local beer produced with a tasting room that serves barrel-aged and sour drafts and bottles is the Alpha Brewing Company.
With a background in science and a penchant for the cavalier and unusual, the Alpha Brewing Company team began brewing in downtown St Louis in 2013.
For someone who loves sour beers, their sours are incredible! The wine barrel-aged sours are very unique It is one of the best breweries in St Louis and when someone visits there they must give it a try.
9. Side Project Brewing Co.
What began as a dream and a side project has now grown into a 100% barrel-aged brewery, something which the founders dreamt of when they began this brewery in 2007, The Side Project Brewing Co is ranked ninth on our list of best breweries in St Louis.
Passion, experimentation, and patience are what drive the creation of the Rustic Saisons, Wild Ales, and Spirit Barrel-Aged Ales.
This Maplewood brewery has garnered plenty of national attention for its all-barrel-aged lineup of Saisons and wild ales. The brewery does not accept delivery orders and works mainly on takeaways only.
10. Narrow Gauge Brewing Company
This Brewing Co that opened in June 2016, and is now brewing beer in the basement of an existing restaurant (Cugino’s) in Florissant, MO is among our tenth best breweries in St Louis.
The brewery is named after the West End Narrow Gauge Railroad, which extended from St. Louis to Florissant in 1878. It was a 16-mile trip that took about an hour and cost close to $0.03 per mile.
Make sure to try some delicious food from Cugino’s when you stop by! They are kid-friendly and have a dog-friendly patio for all well-behaved pups.
Now, I believe the viewers have a good idea of where to go in St. Louis to satisfy their craving for perfectly good quality beer.
With so many options, you can try your best choice of place, drink, and food. So now you know where to go while in St. Louis to spend quality time with your friends and family or by yourself.