A New Look
By the mid fifties, cap-sealed cans were discontinued by Grain Belt and most other breweries, with a switch to flat-top steel cans. Shortly thereafter, Grain Belt introduced a line of new packaging with a more modern red and gold label. Also introduced was a new, soon to be famous slogan, “It’s been a long time a-brewing!”
In addition, a new emphasis was placed on billboard and television advertising, with unique, funny and eye-catching campaigns. One of the most popular featured Stanley and Albert, a pair of cartoon sign painters who sang the praises of Grain Belt Premium. Stanley was the bespectacled little guy and Albert was the big lug with the deep voice. Stanley and Albert were created primarily for the new medium of television, although they were portrayed as billboard painters and their figures were seen “painting” Grain Belt billboards all over Minnesota.
Grain Belt remained a top-selling beer in Minnesota through the sixties as regional brewers had a stronger hold on the loyalty of drinkers than the companies in places such as St. Louis and Milwaukee that would later emerge as the industry titans.
The Minneapolis Brewery became known for its tours and its generous free beer samples, and in the Summer of 1963, Grain Belt Park was dedicated in an ten-acre area of land just in front to the brewery’s old wagon shed, off Broadway and Marshall streets. The centerpiece of the park was a decorative fountain that spouted water up to eighteen feet high, surrounded with a variety of trees, flower gardens, tame deer and Black Forest-style hostelry. A depiction of the fountain began to appear on Grain Belt labels and signage, along with the slogan “From Perfect Brewing Water.”