With a ride to the top of The Gateway Arch out of the way, there was a dozen other things left that I wanted to do in St. Louis.
Number one on the list was the Anheuser-Busch brewery tour. Not because I'm a huge fan of Budweiser, but because all the advertising says you get FREE BEER at the end of the tour! Since free beer almost never happens, this was something I just had to check out. I suspected there might be some kind of catch to the deal, but the only requirement is that you take the full one-hour tour. This wasn't nearly as boring as it sounds, and they do their best to keep things interesting, so it was all good...
Along the way you get to see a few of the world-famous Clydesdale horses. Anheuser-Busch is apparently the largest breeder of the animals world-wide, but they have strict requirements as to which of the horses are used to promote the company.
Our tour guide told us that in order to qualify, a horse had to be the right size (big), right color (dark chestnut brown), have the right features (four white legs), and have the right markings (a snow-white blaze on the forehead). He didn't say what happens to the horses that don't meet Budweiser's high standards, so I can only guess that they are put to death and ground up as dog food for their Dalmations...
After the tour, you get to visit their sampling room and have two glasses of free beer. Yes, FREE BEER!!...
It's what's for breakfast.
I actually ended up with three glasses, because a guy's wife decided she didn't want hers. Nothing quite like getting a beer buzz first thing in the morning. In certainly makes the day start out easier.
The St. Louis Cathedral (which is actually a basilica, elevated to such by Pope John Paul II) has the largest collection of glass mosaics in the world. Not wanting to pass up seeing something like that, I decided to pay a visit...
Sure enough, practically every available surface of this beautiful church is covered in mosaics. You could spend days looking at it all, but I didn't have that kind of time...
From there, I made my way to SLAM (the St. Louis Art Museum) in Forest Park...
The museum itself is very nice, containing a terrific permanent collection. Since they are in the process of remodeling and expanding some of the galleries were closed, but it's hard to complain about it when the admission is free.
Earlier in the day I had purchased a "Day Pass" for St. Louis Metro, which allows unlimited rides of trains and busses. I bought this specifically so I could ride the Forest Park Shuttle and hit the other attractions housed there. Except the shuttle wasn't running at SLAM because of the construction. So I walked down the road and waited at the first Metro stop I could find. But nobody ever came. This meant I had to walk all the way to my next destination in the scorching heat, which sucked major ass. In the half hour I spent making my way to the Missouri History Museum, I saw exactly one shuttle, and it was going the other way. How they can claim 15 minutes between stops I will never know. What I do know is that the Forest Park Shuttle is a piece of shit. If they gave a crap about their patrons at all, they would find a way to service SLAM and keep a better schedule.
By the time I finally got to the museum, all I wanted to do was take a nap. But it's got a number of good exhibits (including the Spirit of St. Louis!) so I soldiered onward...
Too tired and frustrated to see any other attractions in Forest Park because of the stupid shuttle (or lack thereof), I dropping by to see Gina getting her new tattoo, then took the train back to my hotel to get cleaned up for DAVE LOUIS!
Which I will talk about tomorrow. I have only three hours to try and get some sleep before I have to head to the airport for my obscenely early flight out...
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Sorry about the Forest Park Shuttle, but there’s always Beer!!
I love the pictures of the St. Louis Cathedral. It looks like a beautiful place.
Have a safe flight out of there.
The Coors tour was equally as fun back in ’83.
We were allowed to have one each of several beers. At one point I asked the young gal pouring a particular beer if I could have another. She said, “That’s not how you ask. If you say, ‘can I have another’ I’ll know you’ve already had one and since you can only have one of each I’ll have to say ‘no.’ You need to ask as if it is your first trip to this tap.”
So I said, “I’d like to try one of those,” and she said, “OK.”
Of course, those were the free-wheeling early 80’s.
Beer for breakfast. How cool is that?
I’ve been called a beer snob, but I Bud might be the single beer I couldn’t live without. It’s always good and great for a baseball game.
I was in St. Louis back in 2005 and I had the same issue with the shuttles. I waited outside my hotel for 35-40 minutes for a shuttle or one of those double decker red buses but none of them ever showed up, I ended up taking a taxi.
However I am glad to see that Bud serves good Pennsylvania pretzels.
Glad you enjoyed yourself so much!!! Next time you go to St. Louis (and yes, I realize I should have told you this before), make sure you hit the St. Louis SportsZone Bar. My brother owns it and it’s a great place to hang out!!! You could even drop my name and he’s probably give you a free cocktail or beer!
Hey just wondering, how can i get my picture on the comments here? I don’t like the faceless little boy i see instead!!
Sea World in Orlando has a Budweiser free beer area that you can go back a few times a day to get little cups of free beer. I’m not much of a beer drinker, but I did like the Kiran Ichiban brew, which made Sea World a very cool place to visit while buzzed.
Great pictures. That basilica is gorgeous.
I did both the Busch and Coors beer tours two years ago. Coors gives you more beer but the St. Louis brewery is prettier. Here is my brewery tour comparison.
That is my favorite breakfast ever when traveling!
Those mosaics seem lovely. Maybe I’ll get to visit one day. Very cool.
All of those tours and you skipped the Bowling Hall of Fame? Guess you’ll just have to get to Arlington in ~two years to see what you missed.
I never knew one could tour the inside of the arch until I saw it on an HD channel just weeks ago. Thanks for showing some of the views they didn’t.