Did you know that at one point Schlitz was the biggest brewery in the world? Yes, it is true. Did you also know that after being bought by Pabst in 1999, Schlitz is now back and is produced in a way similar to the original 1960s recipe.
According to the Madison “Isthmus” Newspaper, the Schlitz reincarnate is being brewed, “under a contract with MillerCoors at its operations in Eden, North Carolina”. According to the article, there are now waiting lists to get Schlitz into stores. Yes, America is ready to get its Schlitz on.
In addition to, “Go for the gusto”, Schlitz also has the following memorable mottos, “The beer that made Milwaukee famous” and “Just the kiss of the hops”.
You really want to be blown away? The American Civil War began in 1861. Schlitz beer was introduced to the world in 1858, after Joseph Schlitz had already operated the brewery for two years under its previous name. So Schlitz came onto the scene before the Civil War! Now I’ve seen “Glory”, “Gettysburg” and “Gods and Generals”, but what I haven’t seen is these guy pounding Schlitz before going into battle. Historical accuracy and Hollywood never did get along.
After the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Schlitz did the only thing it new how to do in order to help the fine people of Chicago: donate thousands of barrels to thirsty citizens. It also built quite a few brewpubs, which were called “tied houses” a the time, and some of these still stand today.
Schlitz held onto prosperity for as long as it could, holding onto its #2 position until 1976. Then things started to fall apart. Now, I live by the belief that sometimes failure is out of your control, and all you can do is your best.
In 1982, ladies and gentlemen, Schlitz raised the bar regarding what it means to do the best by launching “Schlitz Rocks America With The Who”. This is the kind of American brilliance that has been lost in recent decades. You don’t see Wall Street launching “Schlitz Rocks America With Wall Street”, have you? That would raise half the 700 billion on its own. Nope, Wall Street just wants a hand out, and while Schlitz did ultimately fail in their bid to make a comeback in the ’80s, at least they were able to walk tall and proud knowing that they had done all they could to save the company.
(With no golden parachutes involved, unless you consider groupies and doing lines off of John Entwistle’s bass a kind of golden parachute)