Bitter Brew by William Knoedelseder

Bitter Brew

By William Knoedelseder

  • Release Date: 2012-11-06
  • Genre: Business & Personal Finance
Score: 4.5
From 164 Ratings
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“Bitter Brew deftly chronicles the contentious succession of kings in a uniquely American dynasty. You’ll never crack open a six again without thinking of this book.”
—John Sayles, Director of Eight Men Out and author of A Moment in the Sun

The creators of Budweiser and Michelob beers, the Anheuser-Busch company is one of the wealthiest, most colorful and enduring family dynasties in the history of American commerce. In Bitter Brew, critically acclaimed journalist William Knoedelseder tells the riveting, often scandalous saga of the rise and fall of the dysfunctional Busch family—an epic tale of prosperity, profligacy, hubris, and the dark consequences of success that spans three centuries, from the open salvos of the Civil War to the present day.


  • I couldn't put it down.

    By Srbnet
    Excellent look from a personal and business perspective. I'm not a huge fan of reading such books but found this to be a great account of what transpired through the years of this huge dynasty. Very good read!
  • Bitter Brew

    By KTK1980
    Excellent look at Busch history. Sad and almost disturbing at times. Great read!
  • Fantastic read

    By hanis1982
    Great read about a once great company
  • feels like the backstory to an under-appreciated city

    By DHMD
    While a great read for anyone, this is a must read for anyone who has lived or does live in Saint Louis. I have been here for three years and have had the unshakable feeling that the history of Anheuser Busch is inseperable from the history of this great city. The story here is always gripping and never drags, from the brewing of an iconic (if less than delicious) beer, to the clash of old school business with the globalization and consolidation of industry, to the details of a wealthy family who seems to be portrayed honestly, whether good, bad or ugly.
  • Great Story

    By TheDukerStl
    Didn't know very much about the Busch family when I started, but this book really opened my eyes. I felt like the author was very fair in his interpretations. When he writes about the takeover, I was afraid I wouldn't be able to follow along, but he really did a great job of explaining things.
  • Well Done!

    By Joso64
    Amazing story that goes in depth of a world most all of us will never know or understand. The rise and fall of the Bush family and thus the company is tragic but the lessons are invaluable. Having watched (from the inside) a company grow to a fortune 50 size only to have the reins turned over to an "outsider", this story seems familiar. The story is compelling, the writing complete.