Greetings from The Great White North, and no I don’t mean Canada — I’m talking about Boston. Ben here, and I’ve finally finished digging my way out from the multiple snow storms to hit the area since I arrived. I’ve got a lot to share, but I wrote more than enough essays going through school, so I will not be writing one here. To keep it brief, I’m working in the region sales office outside of Boston, tracking and reporting sales execution. The work is interesting. The people are great. It’s a fun time. Here are some pictures from my recent adventures in and around the city.
The view from my apartment window, following a dusting of snow on my first night in town.
Wandering Boston Commons a little over a week after the massive blizzard. The edge of The Commons is just a couple minute walk from my apartment.
The gorgeous Massachusetts State House — I’m lucky enough to live just a few blocks from here and walk, run, or drive past it almost every day.
Last weekend, with another heavy snowfall hitting the region, my girlfriend and I drove three hours north through whiteout conditions to go snowshoeing and mountain climbing in the fresh powder in New Hampshire. Luckily the snow tapered off just as we got to the trailhead — here’s a picnic table near where we parked.
I think we found Narnia…
This is what the trail was like the entire way. It looked like we were the first ones to come through since before the big storm a couple weeks back. What’s not obvious in this picture is just how steep of an incline it was.
Part of our route overlapped with the Appalachian Trail — hopefully the next time I’m back on this part I’ll be on the home stretch of a Georgia to Maine thru-hike of the AT (and not knee deep in snow).
Frozen river crossing
Sorry — no summit pictures. Despite knocking out several thousand feet of vertical climb fairly rapidly, we were forced to turn back down the mountain, with increasingly heavier snow, high winds, and poor visibility (safety first!).
Following the drive back home (through the heavy snow that had once again started to fall), I gladly kicked off my boots and enjoyed a couple delicious Bud Ice’s in celebration of a terrific snowy day in the northeast.
It’s Josh reporting from the Cartersville Brewery in Georgia. One month into my project and I’m having a blast back here in the South. We had a Friday afternoon happy hour in the office last week and tapped a keg of Goose Island Mild Winter. Guess who got to take home the leftovers… THIS GUY!
It’s awesome getting to take home your work.
My buddy Gopal, from logistics, threw a sizable party and much fun was had by all.
On a more serious note, my project is going very well. Volume projections grew in the last few weeks, so my project budget is going up as well (hopefully $7-8MM). I’m laying out plans to install a new two layer packer (think 30 and 36 packs) on one of our can lines to add products to that line. The General Manager and Operations Manager are taking my proposal to the annual Supply Strategy Planning Meeting in Vegas next week, to try to obtain funding (not an easy task). We’ll see what they come back with.
On another note, I’d just like to point out how BA our brewmaster is, here in Cartersville. He broke his foot a few weeks back and designed this handy cup holder out of necessity. Good to know he always keeps his priorities in mind.
Last week we had our Brewery Excellence Program (BEP) validation audit from 2012. We’re currently ranked 4th, but if the results come back in our favor we have a shot at knocking the Columbus Brewery out of 3rd and taking their spot. I’d say we have a pretty good shot, based on the audit last week. We’ve also hosted plenty of visitors from other breweries recently (Jacksonville, St. Louis, and now Montreal). It’s awesome to see the hospitality this brewery offers to our fellow brewers in the midst of the BEP competition. One team, one dream!
Other than that, everything is going well. All of our packaging lines are over 101% of Standard for the month of February, so there’s plenty of cause for celebration. The year is off to a great start, so let’s hope the trend continues.
Hey everyone, this is Anthony checking in from New Hampshire, the state with what’s probably the best motto in the U.S., “Live Free or Die.” I have made the opposite transition that J.T. has made, moving from our largest brewery, St. Louis, to our smallest brewery, Merrimack. This has given me an excellent opportunity to learn about packaging in an environment where the scale is a little more comprehendible. I’m working on a project to schedule our bottle line more efficiently, to get more beer into bottles and more cases out the door while we’re running.
I’m currently working on an afternoon shift where I’ve been training on our packers which put the bottles into cases. I have a beautiful view from one of our packers of thousands of cases of bottles going by every hour:
If you’re north of Boston, you should seriously consider coming to Merrimack to take a tour of the brewery, meet the clydesdales, and - if you’re over 21 - have a couple of beers on us.
Hi everyone.Chris checking in from sunny (and perhaps slightly smoggy) Los Angeles.I’m out here at the brewery in the San Fernando Valley with Michael whose working in packaging.Max is also in LA, just up the 101 from us working in the region office.I’m personally working in the brewing department helping out with a major capital project starting up this spring.If you haven’t been living under a rock, you’ve probably seen Lime-A-Rita on store shelves (and hopefully drank a few yourself as well).It was launched last year as a seasonal summer product, but due to overwhelming support, it quickly became one of the must have drinks of not only the summer, but the fall, and now even the winter as well.To keep up with all this demand, our system needed to add capacity, some of which is coming to LA.I’m lending a hand on a few different areas on the project including inventory and material management.
Disclaimer: I completely forgot to take many pictures, so I’m just pulling from where I can. Whoops.
Enough about work though. We’ve had quite a few amazing weekends in the short time we’ve been out here. We hit up some of the night life in Pasadena. One night we found a pretty cool dive bar that actually was having a Goose Island sampling. It was great to see the nationwide roll out going well and having a few 312 drafts took me right back to Chicago. We also invented our own version of the darts game cricket (ours is called liftoff - it’s literally the exact opposite and a lot better for those of us who aren’t exactly professional dart throwers).
We’ve also spent some time in Santa Monica, where we visited an Irish pub, shooting pool and playing darts with some of the regulars. We also traveled to Sherman Oaks, grabbing dinner at a neat little restaurant/brew pub/BBQ joint called Boneyard Bistro. And finally, we’ve been doing a little exploring around our place in Woodland Hills as well, doing some site seeing around the town.
This past weekend took the cake so far though. We made the drive down to San Diego for the long weekend (nearly 4 hours to get there, barely two to get back – welcome to LA traffic). There’s a fun little area down there called the Gaslamp Quarter. It’s a bunch of bars and restaurants of all sorts of varieties. Our favorite had to be the Double Deuce, a multi-level country bar complete with a riding bull. We were all excited to get a chance to break out our flannel and cowboy boots for a night on the town.
The other nights we checked out some other bars –the Shout Out and Whiskey Girl to name a couple – as well as ate at a few of the local spots (as well as Chipotle, because Chipotle is delicious). Our favorite meal had to be the one at the Crab Hut, where we had a couple pounds of seafood boil – king crab, snow crab, shrimp, mussels, and crawfish.
I don’t know if this next weekend can quite live up to the last, but we’ll try. We’re planning on taking my new rental for some drives – maybe out through Topanga Canyon, up Mulholland Drive, and out to Hollywood.
Do the trainees receive salary and do you accept people from other countries not living in usa.
The trainees are considered full time employees with Anheuser-Busch InBev. As such, they are compensated with salary as well as benefits given to the rest of our employees.
There are similar Global Management Trainee programs throughout the world. Depending on your country of citizenship, you may be eligible for one of them! I encourage you to check out our global career opportunities website here: http://www.ab-inbev.com/go/careers/job-search.cfm
This is the third week I’ve spent here in the operations department. My supply rotation was in Merrimack, NH, our smallest U.S. brewery. Needless to say, things are a bit different on this end of the spectrum. It is amazing how much beer we produce and package every day! I’ve been spending most of my time thus far shadowing the operators and getting to know the packaging process, but now, I’m starting to train with the Group Managers and Process Managers. My day started with the Cans Group Manager, Juan, showing me around for a bit and introducing me to the folks on the line, then handing me the nextel and saying, “Good Luck”.
Outside of work, Ari and I have been getting into all sorts of trouble, from going to the firing range to shoot crazy awesome weapons while it is still legal to partying in the Bud Light tent at Mardi Gras in Soulard. We are also looking forward to welcoming all the new 2013 GMTs this week when they fly in to meet ManCom.
Everyone keeps writing about work, so I am going to write about all the fun stuff we get to do outside of the office because we have a WORK LIFE BALANCE!!!!
Last weekent, I headed down to the St. Louis auto show at Edward Jones Dome to check out what the car manufacturers have been up to.
The trucks were incredibly unimpressive from an innovation standpoint. Other than some basic improvements to gas mileage, electronics, and looks it does not seem like any manufacturer is willing to take the risk and make major changes in the truck line. They need to innovate.
The cars on the other hand are making some serious progress. Ford, Chevy, Cadillac, and Dodge are making huge strides in power and handling. Dodge has ramped up their SRT line and it seems to be doing really well with consumers. Chevy has created the Camaro ZL1 and Corvette ZR1 to compete with Dodge’s SRT lineup. Cadillac has finally welded performance and luxury together into the same car. Their “V” lineup is scary. Ford has some packages that look pretty good performance wise, but its time to update the mustangs looks. All of the cars are power monsters producing well over the 450hp mark and some into the 500+ range. Thats awesome.
Here are some shots from the show. Loved the drift show outside.
Maybe my GMT life will lead to one of these in my garage…
Like Josh, I also am back home in the great city of Atlanta. However, contrary to popular thought outside of the state (and apparently Josh), Atlanta does not like to be referred to as hotlanta. There was even a campaign started by a local radio station in 2009 to get people to stop using the phrase when talking about our city. Seriously. Don’t do it.
Moving on, I will be spending the next four months working out of the Region 3 sales office located just outside the city limits. Since this is only week 2 in the office, I’m mostly doing training courses and learning how to use all of the systems available to analyze data for sales. One project that I’ve started focusing on is tracking our ads in grocery weekly fliers, comparing the number of ads to competitors and working to compare to sales numbers. This will help determine the efficiency of the ad placements and show if they provide a lift in sales.
Quite possibly the most important thing I’ve learned so far is how to perfect pour a 24oz can of Bud into a plastic cup. Maybe this is old news, but I just discovered it at a concert last weekend… simply put a cup (large enough to hold 24oz obviously) completely over an open can, flip them together 180 degrees so the can is upside down and the cup right side up, and slowly lift the can so that it stays about an inch over the beer in the cup. Boom, perfect pour for your next Bud tall boy.
This is what your fridge may start to look like after working for AB… no food necessary, only beer!
Well I’ve already made it back to California! Michael here, reporting from the LA brewery (I was at our Beach Cities distributor for a good chunk of November and December). Apparently I couldn’t get enough of the sunny weather, carne asada tacos, and an almost unlimited variety of things to do outside of work. This time I’m up in the San Fernando Valley with Chris, and despite what you may have heard about ‘The Valley’, it’s actually a great place to live and work.
While I’m here, I am going to be working in the packaging group, which should round out last year’s brewing department training. Specifically, I’ll be focusing on one of our can lines which is transforming from one that traditionally ran only 12 and 16 ounce cans to one of our most diverse company wide. You may have seen the “slim” cans used by Ultra and just introduced by Bud Light Platinum, or the 8 ounce Lime-a-Rita cans. As always, we also have some innovative new packages coming to you in the next couple months which we will be adding to the same line. It’s my job to make sure the line runs as good, and eventually better than it has in the past, especially during conversions between different packages.
Since we’ve settled in, we have already gone out exploring and made some big plans. This weekend we joined one of Max’s friends for some homebrewing:
Hand grinding the barley malt took way more effort than we expected
Mashing in what will soon be Pale Ale
The logical way to cool your wort…put your brewkettle in the pool
Of course, we celebrated the Super Bowl yesterday with all of our brands you saw on TV and more. We went to a party hosted by none other than one of last year’s GMTs who now works in the LA region sales office. The King had an overwhelming popular and moving commercial putting Anheuser-Busch back on the top of USA Today’s Ad Meter. We’ve actually had the top commercial 12 times in the 25 years they have been running the program; more than double of any other company!
Things at the top of the list for the next couple months include: a trip to Yosemite, a visit to Las Vegas for some rest and relaxation, and a look at our ‘Beer Garage’ in Palo Alto that is always looking for innovative new ways to share our brands and make new friends. Now that we’ve gotten past the Super Bowl, baseball is right around the corner too, so we’ll be making trips to some of California’s stadiums in no time.
Until next time, go out and grab yourself a Black Crown. You deserve it.
Goose Island Sofie | Assorted Cheeses and Fresh Fruit
Budweiser Black Crown | Buffalo Chicken Bites
Widmer Brothers SXNW | French Onion Crostini
Goose Island Pepe Nero | Cheddar Sliders Guac Aioli and Peppered Pig Candy
Budweiser | Deep Fried Wonton Pierogi and Baked Potato Dip
For recipes or pairing inquiries contact Anthony.Rotio@Anheuser-Busch.com
Edit: A great question was posed by Rob from Cartersville about why a Budweiser can was used for the last pairing as opposed to a bottle. Here’s my reply:
Great question, Rob. In this case, specifically, it was purely an availability issue. During the game, I only had cans of Budweiser in my refrigerator. Even though that’s the case, it’s important to remember that canned beer is good, fresh beer. Let’s start with the beer itself.
Brewing occurs at the nexus of art and science. In our breweries, our brewmasters craft the highest quality brews from the finest ingredients following century old recipes, all the while using modern science to ensure consistency in delivering that quality. We take incredible care ensuring that every beer that reaches you is fresh beer that maintains all of the quality bestowed upon it by our brewmasters.
When packaging our beer, we adhere to the strictest quality assurance standards. Every day we review minute discrepancies in metrics ranging from hairline gaps in can seams to total parts per million of CO2 that make it into that bottle or can. Whether in glass or aluminum, the beer inside is as fresh as possible.
Regardless of packaging, to fully enjoy the beer, you should pour it (down the center) into clean glassware. The beautiful head that forms allows that magical aroma to release that’s been captivating our senses for centuries – those unique combinations of sweet or toasted malty notes; the sharp or floral spice of hops; the slight breadiness of the yeast; and the many other subtle complexities given from all three that can rarely be put into words. Pouring correctly also allows some carbonation to escape, giving that perfect level of effervescence that won’t make you feel full.
To elevate beer, we have to talk about the beer — the packaging should be irrelevant. The “good ’ole canned bud”, on the inside, is Budweiser. Budweiser: a beer brewed with tradition and character since 1876.Budweiser: a brilliantly balanced, clean brew that makes even the most minor imperfection evident, which makes it an incredibly difficult beer to brew. To me, it’s Budweiser: my favorite beer.
This is all coming from a guy who’s drank many a Budweiser straight out of cans and bottles (and still do from time to time), sucking them down purely for refreshment on the deck in the hot summer sun, never pausing to reflect at all on what all went into the King of Beers. Every now and then, though, it’s nice to pour one, take in the complex aroma, and have a taste to realize what our ancestors figured out a long, long time ago: beer is an incredible beverage.