Dos Equis is a classic Mexican beer that has become incredibly popular in the United States. The lager-style beer was originally brewed in Mexico in 1897 under the name Siglo XX, meaning “twentieth century.” It was later renamed Dos Equis, which translates to “two X’s” and comes from the Roman numeral XX.
Dos Equis continues to be primarily brewed at several locations across Mexico today. The parent brewing company Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma operates breweries in cities like Monterrey, Guadalajara, Toluca, and Tecate. The main brewery is located in Monterrey. Recently though, Dos Equis has expanded its brewing operations beyond Mexico.
In an effort to avoid supply chain disruptions during the COVID-19 pandemic, Dos Equis temporarily moved some of its production to Zoeterwoude, Netherlands. Additionally, there have been rumors that the company is considering opening a new brewery in the United States, potentially in White Plains, New York. Wherever Dos Equis chooses to brew its beer, it continues to be one of the most popular Mexican imports in America today.
The Origins of Dos Equis in Mexico
The history of Dos Equis beer begins in 1890 when German immigrant Wilhelm Hasse established the Moctezuma Brewery company in Veracruz, Mexico. In 1897, Hasse brewed the first Siglo XX beer, marketed under the name “Twentieth Century” to celebrate the coming new century.
The beer was originally only distributed locally in Veracruz. It wasn’t until the 1950s that brand recognition started growing outside the area. In 1973, Siglo XX was imported to the United States for the first time, introduced to American consumers as Dos Equis. However, it failed to make an impact on the US market at the time.
Dos Equis remained a relatively small regional beer in Mexico for decades. It lived in the shadow of brands like Corona and wasn’t considered a major export product. The beer’s fortunes finally changed in the 2000s due to an award-winning advertising campaign.
The “Most Interesting Man in the World” Campaign
In 2006, Dos Equis launched the “Most Interesting Man in the World” campaign, creating a fictitious character who was skilled and adventurous beyond belief. The amusing advertisements helped drive demand for Dos Equis, especially among young American males. By 2009, Dos Equis had become the fastest growing imported beer in the US.
The influential ad campaign established Dos Equis as a major player in the imported beer industry. It also transferred the brand’s image from a little-known Mexican regional beer to a cosmopolitan global brand. The witty campaign ran for nearly a decade before ending in 2016.
Major Brewing Locations in Mexico
Despite its growth in the US, Dos Equis has remained committed to its Mexican brewing roots. The majority of Dos Equis beer is produced at breweries located across Mexico.
The parent company Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma operates large-scale breweries in Monterrey, Guadalajara, Toluca, Tecate, Orizaba, and Meoqui. The main brewery is located in Monterrey and likely produces the highest volume of beer.
Some of these Mexican breweries have been operating for over a hundred years. For example, the Toluca brewery first opened in 1909. The massive 1.7 million square feet Monterrey brewery was founded in 1890 and remains the heart of Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma’s production operations today.
Quality Standards in Mexican Breweries
All the Dos Equis breweries in Mexico maintain high standards of quality control and consistency. They use pure mountain spring water from local sources near the breweries. The operations also follow strict guidelines on cleaning, pasteurizing, and inspecting the beer during the brewing process.
Special care is taken to preserve the classic Dos Equis flavor profile from batch to batch. Before shipping to the US, brewmasters thoroughly test and analyze the beer’s taste, color, aroma, foam stability, and other metrics. This ensures only the best quality Dos Equis reaches American consumers.
Expansion to European Brewing
While Mexico remains the heartland of Dos Equis production, the company has expanded brewing abroad when necessary. During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Dos Equis temporarily shifted some brewing to the Zoeterwoude brewery in the Netherlands.
The Zoeterwoude facility is owned by Heineken, which has a minority stake in Dos Equis through parent company Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma. Moving limited production to the Netherlands ensured supply continuity for the US market while Mexican operations were closed.
However, once COVID-19 restrictions eased, Dos Equis moved brewing back to Mexico. The company remains committed to producing its core brands within Mexico to retain authenticity. Expansion to Europe was only ever a temporary workaround during extraordinary circumstances.
Potential for New American Breweries
As Dos Equis continues growing in popularity across the United States, there have been rumors the company may consider opening new brewing facilities on American soil.
Potential locations for a US-based Dos Equis brewery could include cities along the East Coast or Midwest with easy distribution access. For example, building a brewery in White Plains, New York has been one option floated.
Expanding brewing to the US could provide marketing benefits for Dos Equis in America. However, it’s unclear if a US brewery would produce the full Dos Equis lineup or just select beers tailored for the American palate.
The company has likely conducted extensive research on the pros and cons of brewing in America compared to Mexico. Major factors to consider include labor costs, local water quality, import/export fees, and whether American-made beer could affect brand perception.
Protecting Brand Integrity
As Dos Equis weighs potential US expansion, protecting brand integrity remains paramount. Much of the beer’s popularity is tied to its Mexican heritage. Diluting that identity could damage market share in the competitive imported beer segment.
Dos Equis will likely aim to strike a careful balance between boosting availability for American consumers and maintaining its core Mexican brewing operations. Any new US facilities would be positioned as supplementary sites rather than replacing existing breweries.
The Future of Dos Equis Brewing
Looking ahead, Dos Equis will continue relying on its Mexican roots while selectively expanding abroad as the brand evolves. The company has a complex challenge of growing internationally while staying loyal to its Mexican legacy.
However, with smart strategic planning, Dos Equis can have the best of both worlds. It can keep the majority of brewing in Mexico for authenticity while launching new breweries worldwide to increase market reach. Regardless of which facilities produce the beer, Dos Equis’s unique flavor profile and branding will keep delighting consumers across the US.
Other beers brewed in the same locations as Dos Equis
|Brewery Location||Dos Equis Beers Brewed||Other Beers Brewed in Same Location|
|Monterrey, Mexico||Dos Equis Lager, Dos Equis Amber||Tecate, Sol, Carta Blanca, Superior, Bohemia|
|Guadalajara, Mexico||Dos Equis Lager||Tecate, Sol, Carta Blanca, Superior|
|Toluca, Mexico||Dos Equis Amber||Tecate, Sol, Carta Blanca, Superior|
|Tecate, Mexico||Dos Equis Lager||Tecate, Sol, Carta Blanca, Bohemia|
|Orizaba, Mexico||Dos Equis Lager||Tecate, Sol, Carta Blanca, Bohemia|
|Meoqui, Mexico||Dos Equis Lager||Tecate, Sol, Carta Blanca, Bohemia|
|Zoeterwoude, Netherlands||Dos Equis Lager (temporary)||Heineken, Amstel, Affligem, Sol|
FAQs about Dos Equis brewing locations
Where is Dos Equis beer primarily brewed?
The majority of Dos Equis beer is brewed at several brewery locations across Mexico, including Monterrey, Guadalajara, Toluca, Tecate, Orizaba, and Meoqui. The main brewery is located in Monterrey.
Why did Dos Equis temporarily brew beer in the Netherlands?
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Dos Equis moved some production to the Netherlands to avoid supply chain issues when Mexican breweries were shut down. This location was only temporary during the pandemic.
Does Dos Equis brew all their beer varieties at every location?
No, the brewing is divided up between locations. For example, the amber lager is brewed in Toluca while the standard lager comes from other breweries.
Is Dos Equis planning to open a brewery in the United States?
There have been rumors of a potential US brewery, possibly located in White Plains, New York, but there are no concrete plans yet.
How important is Mexican brewing to the Dos Equis brand image?
The Mexican heritage is very important to the Dos Equis brand identity. This is why the company prioritizes Mexican brewing locations.
Does brewing Dos Equis beer outside of Mexico change the flavor?
No, Dos Equis maintains quality standards and flavor consistency regardless of which approved facility brews the beer.
What are the benefits of expanding to US brewing locations?
Potential benefits include faster distribution times, lower shipping costs, and marketing appeal from brewing locally in the US market.
What beer brands share breweries with Dos Equis in Mexico?
Other Mexican beer brands like Tecate, Sol, and Carta Blanca are made in the same Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma breweries as Dos Equis.
Dos Equis has cemented itself as a top Mexican import beer in the United States, appealing to American consumers with its refreshing, malt-forward taste profile. This classic cerveza traces its roots back to 19th century Mexico, where it is still primarily brewed today. The parent company Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma carefully controls production across six major breweries in cities like Monterrey, Guadalajara, and Toluca to maintain quality and standards. While Dos Equis continues leveraging its Mexican brewing heritage for authenticity, the brand has shown adaptability by temporarily expanding to European facilities as needed amid unique challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic. Wherever each bottle originates, fans can enjoy the same smooth, crisp flavor of Dos Equis lager that made it one of the most popular imported beers on American tables today.