ST. LOUIS — Anheuser-Busch has had worldwide success with its own beer recipes, and now the company is giving its St. Louis workers an opportunity to develop their own.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a long-vacant building that once housed starting and fermenting operations recently opened as a small batch brewery, dubbed “Star Shop Brewery.”

Star shop brewmaster Dusty Rhodes says employees first identify the kind of beer they want to brew. Then they select from more than a dozen kinds of hops and several kinds of malts. After that, they mill the grain in a grinder.

“We like to keep a large variety on hand so they can experiment,” Rhodes said.

Eight fermenters can be filled with mixes of water, malt, hops and yeast. Other ingredients can include lemon zest, orange rind and hibiscus flowers.

Employees have spent several hours since the small batch brewery opened making 7- to 10-gallon batches that are put into kegs and served on-site after a few weeks of aging. Those employees have included management trainees from outside of St. Louis.

Groups compete against one another to develop the best tasting brew as part of team-building exercises. Travis Moore, senior brewmaster at A-B’s St. Louis brewery, does the judging.

“This gives all employees a way to relate back to hands-on brewing,” said Moore, who also is a homebrewer. “You can have hundreds of different combinations that determine the outcome. The folks in accounting and sales don’t work in the brewery and this is all about fun.”

The creation of the small batch brewery coincides with a new employee recruitment campaign on social media called “We Are All Brewers.”

Anheuser-Busch’s other U.S. breweries have all added small batch breweries for employees and each location develops its own name. In Fort Collins, Colorado, it’s called Brewhouse Three. In Jacksonville, Florida, it’s called Copper Cellar.


Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, http://www.stltoday.com