Fearful Symmetries

Witness a machine turn coffee into pointless ramblings...

27 April, 2010

Viking Brewing Company Closing Shop?

A homebrewing friend of mine with aspirations to open a brewery told me last week that he had spoken to the folks at Viking Brewing Company about buying their brewing equipment. At the time, I assumed that brewmaster Randy Lee was getting rid of the old dairy tanks he had and was upgrading the facilities. When I was there last summer, he had a new tank waiting to be installed. But over the weekend I was in Woodman's wearing my Viking shirt when one of the guys behind the register made a comment to me that the shirt would be a collector's item as they were going out of business.

I am hoping against hope that the gentleman was mistaken and that Viking remains in business. Their Hot Chocolate brew is The Dulcinea's beer of choice for the winter months and I'd prefer she not be all grumpy come December.

Jeff "Germans only brew boring lagers" Glazer at Madison Beer Review has not noted Viking's demise so I'm confident that we're talking about a temporary shut down for installation of new equipment but I'm preparing for the worst.
|| Palmer, 10:19 AM


YIKES! boy, i hope this is not the case... but i sadly heard that it is
Blogger noah, at 12:04 PM  
I also heard from another brewmaster that Viking was going out of business. Their equipment has been for sale since February. I Think it is true since there has been no response from the "rumor" from Randy Lee at Viking.
Blogger gifford, at 11:53 AM  
I emailed Viking:


Unfortunately, the have indeed closed shop.
Blogger Palmer, at 4:43 PM  
Verbatim...the email I got back in early April

Randy Lee to me
show details Apr 3

On 3/31/2011 12:39 AM, andy king wrote:

While I say cheers to your next adventure, I am confused as to where I can find your products or under what name. I used to make the trip over to Woodman's or Festival from the Rochester, MN area, but I haven't seen any since in the stores since November I believe, and the people I asked didn't have any answers as to when product would come in. My wife and I are at least moving back to cheeseland (Monroe, WI) in the near future so there should be an easier drive to acquire your fine beverages. Whole Stein is still my preferred choice of indulgence since having sampled it many Bluff fests ago. Whenever you have a moment to send a reply, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks for your response and continued good brewing.
andy king

yes, we've not been in stores for some time now. We are working on getting paperwork done with the Feds (who've been sitting on it for 6 months for whatever reason). We hope to be back in distribution by like June or so at this rate.

We'll put out some announcements when we know something ourselves


Randy Lee
Viking Brewing Company
Dallas, WI

Unpasteurized, Keep Cool!
Blogger ak, at 9:56 PM  
ak - thanks for sharing that. The last I heard, they were to become Five Star.


There is mention of this in the current issue of Great Lakes Brewing News but no firm details. The domain is active although there's nothing at the site - http://fivestarbrewery.com/.

What I find worrisome is that Randy hasn't done anything to build anticipation. While waiting for fed approval, throw up a Facebook page or Twitter feed. Get the word out to former Viking and craft beer drinkers more generally. Get a buzz going. I'm afraid that the brewery will open and no one will know.
Blogger Palmer, at 9:50 AM  
Just found this on the web...so I'll have to be checking into stores soon.


Blogger ak, at 12:21 PM  
I saw that too.


Looks like it may be a while before they distribute down here in the Madison area.
Blogger Palmer, at 1:16 PM  

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