The Interesting History of Dos XX Beer


When the topic of beer surfaces in conversation, minds often wander to the festive halls of Germany’s Oktoberfest or perhaps to the dark, frothy pints of Guinness that symbolize Ireland’s rich brewing heritage. Others might drift towards the iconic American classics like Budweiser and Coors, symbols of the United States’ brewing prowess. While these brands have etched their names into the global consciousness, carving out legacies that span continents, there exists a realm of underappreciated brews that merit recognition for their unique flavors and distinguished quality.

One of these underrated beers is Dos XX or Dos Equis, a Mexican beer that was first brewed in 1897. Although Dos XX beer has been underrated for many years, there was one particular period when it was one of the most-known beer brands in the world, thanks to a clever marketing campaign. To know more, here is the interesting history of Dos XX Beer.

Origins and Early History of Dos XX Beer

A glass of Mexican beer

The story of Dos Equis begins in the late 19th century, and is rooted in the ambition and craft of a German immigrant named Wilhelm Hasse. Venturing far from his homeland, Hasse arrived in Mexico with a dream to brew a beer that would resonate with the tastes and spirit of his new home. In 1897, he established the Moctezuma Brewery in the bustling port city of Veracruz. It was here, amidst the confluence of Mexican tradition and European brewing techniques, that Dos Equis was born.

Siglo XX: A Name for the New Century

Wilhelm Hasse chose the name “Siglo XX” (Twentieth Century) for his creation to symbolize hope and innovation for the upcoming century. This name reflected not only an optimism for the future but also the merging of different cultures and traditions within Mexico. The beer was initially crafted to cater to the local palate, offering a distinct taste that set it apart from other beers of the time. The two Xs in its name, representing the Roman numeral for 20, would later become its most recognizable symbol, earning the beer the nickname “Dos Equis.”

Early Challenges and Successes

The early years of Dos Equis were marked by both challenges and successes. Brewing quality beer in the tropical climate of Veracruz requires adaptation and innovation. Hasse’s commitment to maintaining the integrity of traditional German brewing methods while also embracing the unique ingredients and flavors of Mexico helped Dos Equis establish a foothold in the local market. The brewery faced competition from established Mexican and imported beers, but the distinct taste and quality of Dos Equis began to win over consumers.

Growth and Recognition

As the 20th century progressed, Dos Equis continued to grow in popularity. The Moctezuma Brewery expanded its operations, incorporating new technologies and brewing practices to increase production without compromising on quality. Dos Equis started to be recognized beyond the borders of Veracruz, finding its way into other parts of Mexico and eventually into international markets. The brand’s commitment to quality and its unique heritage helped it stand out in a crowded beer market.

The Evolution of Dos Equis

A glass of beer

The journey of Dos Equis from a regional Mexican beer to a globally recognized brand is a testament to its adaptability, innovation, and marketing prowess. Over the years, Dos Equis has evolved in various aspects, from its brewing processes to its branding strategies. Here’s an overview of the key milestones in the evolution of Dos Equis:

  • Expansion and Modernization: In the early 20th century, Dos Equis began expanding its reach beyond Veracruz, thanks to the growing railway network in Mexico. The Moctezuma Brewery modernized its production facilities, embracing new technologies to increase efficiency and beer quality. This period marked the transition of Dos Equis from a local favorite to a national contender in the Mexican beer market.
  • Introduction of Variants: Recognizing the diverse tastes of beer drinkers, Dos Equis introduced different variants to cater to a wider audience. The most notable additions were Dos Equis Lager Especial, a crisp and refreshing pale lager, and Dos Equis Ambar, a Vienna-style lager with a rich amber color and smooth taste. These variations helped broaden Dos Equis’ appeal and market share.
  • Acquisitions and Global Reach: The latter half of the 20th century saw the Moctezuma Brewery being acquired by larger beverage conglomerates, which played a crucial role in introducing Dos Equis to international markets. Strategic partnerships and distribution agreements enabled Dos Equis to be sold in the United States and beyond, establishing it as a significant player in the global beer industry.
  • Marketing Mastery – The “Most Interesting Man in the World” Campaign: Perhaps the most transformative phase in the brand’s history was the launch of the iconic “Most Interesting Man in the World” advertising campaign in the mid-2000s. This campaign portrayed an enigmatic and worldly character whose life adventures were as diverse and intriguing as the beer itself. The campaign was a massive success, significantly boosting Dos Equis’ brand recognition and sales, particularly in the U.S. market. It became a cultural phenomenon, proving the power of creative marketing in redefining a brand’s image.
  • Innovation and Sustainability: In recent years, Dos Equis has continued to innovate, both in terms of product offerings and its approach to brewing. The brand has shown a commitment to sustainability, implementing eco-friendly practices in its brewing and packaging processes. Limited edition flavors and collaborations with other brands have kept Dos Equis relevant and exciting for beer enthusiasts.

The evolution of Dos Equis is a story of resilience, creativity, and a relentless pursuit of quality. Each phase of its history reflects a brand that is not afraid to change and adapt, ensuring its legacy continues to grow in the ever-changing world of beer.

The Iconic “Most Interesting Man in the World” Campaign

The Dos Equis brand reached unprecedented heights of popularity through its innovative and memorable advertising campaign featuring “The Most Interesting Man in the World.” This campaign not only transformed the brand’s image but also left an indelible mark on advertising history. Here are the key aspects of this iconic campaign:

Concept and Launch

Launched in the mid-2000s, the campaign introduced a suave, sophisticated, and worldly character known as “The Most Interesting Man in the World.” Portrayed by actor Jonathan Goldsmith, the character was depicted engaging in various adventurous and often exaggerated activities, accompanied by the tagline, “I don’t always drink beer, but when I do, I prefer Dos Equis.” This approach was a departure from traditional beer advertisements, focusing on the character’s intriguing persona rather than the beer itself.

Impact and Popularity

The campaign quickly gained traction, captivating audiences with its humor, sophistication, and the magnetic appeal of its protagonist. It struck a chord not only with beer drinkers but also with a broader audience, making “The Most Interesting Man in the World” a cultural icon. The ads were shared widely across social media, contributing to the viral spread of the campaign and significantly boosting Dos Equis’ brand recognition and sales, particularly in the United States.

Evolution of the Campaign

Over the years, the campaign evolved to keep the character and the advertisements fresh and engaging. New adventures, witty one-liners, and a consistent emphasis on the character’s unparalleled experiences helped maintain the campaign’s popularity. The character’s catchphrase became a part of popular culture, often parodied and referenced in various media.

End and Legacy

In 2016, Dos Equis announced that it would be retiring the original “Most Interesting Man in the World” character and later introduced a new actor to take over the role. While the campaign’s second iteration aimed to maintain the spirit of the original, the initial portrayal by Jonathan Goldsmith remains the most iconic. The decision to conclude the original campaign marked the end of an era, but its impact on the brand and advertising as a whole continues to be felt.

Dos XX in Popular Culture and Sponsorships

A bottle of Dos Equis beer with mixed nuts and slices of lime

Dos Equis has cleverly embedded itself into popular culture and secured various sponsorships that have broadened its appeal and solidified its status as a culturally relevant brand. Here’s how Dos Equis has extended its influence beyond the beer aisle:

  • Film and Television: Dos Equis has made cameo appearances in movies and TV shows, often adding a touch of sophistication or humor to the scenes it graces. These appearances have helped the brand maintain a presence in the minds of consumers, associating it with moments of leisure and enjoyment.
  • Memes and Social Media: The “Most Interesting Man in the World” campaign, in particular, gave rise to countless memes and social media posts, further embedding Dos Equis into the digital era’s cultural lexicon. This phenomenon ensured that Dos Equis remained relevant to younger consumers who spend a significant amount of time online.
  • Sports Sponsorships: Dos Equis has been active in sponsoring sporting events, including college football in the United States. These sponsorships have placed the brand in front of millions of sports fans, associating Dos Equis with the excitement and camaraderie of sports. By aligning itself with popular and widely viewed events, Dos Equis has reinforced its image as a beer for those who appreciate the finer things in life, including quality sports entertainment.
  • Music and Cultural Festivals: By sponsoring music and cultural festivals, Dos Equis taps into the vibrant energy of these gatherings, connecting with audiences who value creativity, music, and cultural diversity. These sponsorships allow Dos Equis to be part of the collective experience of festival-goers, further enhancing its standing as a brand that celebrates and facilitates memorable experiences.
  • Leveraging Brand Ambassadors: After the success of the “Most Interesting Man in the World” campaign, Dos Equis continued to leverage personalities and influencers as brand ambassadors. These collaborations have helped keep the brand in public view, associating it with individuals who embody the adventurous and discerning spirit that Dos Equis seeks to represent.
  • Educational and Charitable Initiatives: Dos Equis has also engaged in educational and charitable initiatives, aligning itself with causes that resonate with its consumer base. These efforts not only contribute to the brand’s social responsibility goals but also help build a deeper connection with consumers who value brands that give back to the community.


The journey of Dos Equis from a local Mexican beer to a globally recognized brand is proof of its quality, innovation, and the power of memorable marketing. Through its intriguing history, evolution, iconic advertising campaigns, and strategic presence in popular culture and sponsorships, Dos Equis has established itself as a beer that not only offers a unique taste but also a rich narrative that resonates with consumers worldwide. As it continues to adapt and grow, Dos Equis remains a distinguished member of the beer community, inviting enthusiasts and casual drinkers alike to enjoy the depth and character of its brews.

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