Did you know that St. Louis is the home of Everclear?
No, not that Everclear. They’re from Portland. I’m talking the 190 proof liquid fire that is the main ingredient in Jungle Juice (or whatever you called it before you were legally able to drink). I was surprised, but it turns out Luxco is the maker of not only Everclear, but Pearl Vodka and one of my favorites in my early drinking days, Purple Passion.
Finding out this surprising news I wondered what else comes from St. Louis? I mean, we all know Budweiser; I think they are synonymous with St. Louis even though they aren’t locally owned any longer. But what else? A quick Google search led to surprisingly few results, or at least it took trips to lots of websites on a computer that wasn’t getting along with me, to compile a list.
So here it is. Well, in saying that I admit up front that there were a dizzying number of acquisitions and sales and mergers and hostile takeovers so I may have a mistake or two.
Section 1: Things that are so St. Louis. Making a gift basket that you want to fill with local treats to send to a native who has moved away or welcome someone new to town? Try these out: Dad’s Cookies, Gus’ Pretzels, Red Hot Riplets, Billy Goat Chips, Bissinger’s chocolate, Switzer’s Candy, mostly known for their licorice, and of course, Hautly Cheese.
Section 2: Once you have tried all of that, you may be suffering from heartburn. Time for a TUMS. You guessed it, TUMS is made in St. Louis. Or how about a cold beverage: Fitz’s Root Beer, located in The Loop, uses a vintage 1940’s bottling line that turns out a bottle a second. There’s also Vess Soda, Thomas Coffee, Ronnoco, Schlafly, and Kraftig, all from STL.
Section 3: Vi Jon makes Germ X in St. Louis as well as some private label products, Energizer Batteries has their headquarters here, and Procter and Gamble makes Cascade, Mr. Clean, Febreze and Swiffers here. Ralston Purina originated in St. Louis in 1894. It’s store brand foods business, Ralcorp Holdings, who manufactures food products like Post Cereal and Ry-Krisp Bread, is still headquartered here, as well as the Purina pet food brand. The Drury Hotels were founded in St. Louis. Build-A-Bear’s first store was in the St. Louis Galleria and is headquartered here. Brown Shoe Company, who owns Famous Footwear and whose brands include Naturalizer and Buster Brown to name a few, was created here, with headquarters located in Clayton. Rawlings, creator of the MLB’s Gold Glove Award, was founded and is headquartered here. Hardee’s, the fifth largest fast food chain, is headquartered here, as well as Panera, formerly known as St. Louis Bread Co.
I hope you found something you didn’t know in the list. I know there is much more that is made in St. Louis and a fascinating list of companies who are headquartered in St. Louis, but I will leave that for another post. What are you surprised is made in St. Louis?
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