In St. Louis, a new brewery from an old name

Griesedieck Brothers, one of the most famous names in St. Louis brewing history, plans to build a new brewery in the city. Eighth generation brewer Raymond A. Griesedieck and his son, Bob, expect to begin brewing in the Baden neighborhood by the middle of next year.

The family’s brewing roots trace back to 1766 when Johann Griesendieck began making beer in Stromberg, Westphalia. About 100 years later Anton Griesedeck moved to America and settled in St. Louis. After he and two partners bought the Thamer Brewing Co. in 1878 his family became enmeshed in St. Louis brewing. When the indsutry consolidation of the 1940s and 1950s left just four major local players operating (Anheuser-Busch, Flastaff, Stag and Griesedeck Brothers) the latter three were still largely controlled by members of the Griesedieck family.

G/B sold nearly a million barrels of beer a year in the early 1950s, but after Edward Griesedieck died in 1955 and the family faced a massive estate tax bill its members decided to sell to Falstaff Brewing. Falstaff was controlled by another branch of the family. Not long after Falstaff bought the G/B brewery it discontinued the brand, then briefly revived it in 1976 for one year.

In 1987, local entrepreneurs resurrected the brand, contracting to have it made in Wisconsin. The Griesediecks later bought it back. Now the plan is to resume brewing in St. Louis. “St. Louisians are proud of their beer, especially the beers that are locally owned and have a story behind them,” Raymond Griesedieck said. “We don’t have to make up a story for G/B Beer, though; we just have to tell the story that already exists. Brewing and packaging a St. Louis beer in St. Louis just adds to the story.”

Bob Griesedieck said the family plans to open a tasting room in the space, but initially, the brewery will primarily focus on production and manufacturing.