Gluek's beer was brewed before MN was even a state – now it's coming back

You'll be able to get it starting Friday.
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Gluek's is back.

The classic Minnesota beer brand was established back in 1857, making it one of the oldest in the state. It was retired in 2010 though after a 153-year run.

But now the beer brand – which survived prohibition – will make its return on Friday, a news release says.

"It's my passion to keep this nostalgic brand alive," Linda Rae Holcomb, the owner and only employee of Gluek's Beer, told GoMN. "Gluek Beer is back, and here to stay."

Gluek's Beer is inspired by "old world tradition," and uses Munich malts and traditional Saaz hops. This sessionable lager, which has an ABV of 5.25 percent, is "designed to be enjoyed over the course of a shared, social experience," the release says.

The is being brewed and packaged by Sleeping Giant Brewing Co. out of Denver, and will be distributed to bars, restaurants and liquor stores across the southern half of Minnesota. You'll be able to get it on tap or in 16-ounce tallboy cans.

Gluek's – the lifestyle brand

Holcomb is an international yoga and nutrition teacher, which explains her mission for the Gluek's Beer brand: "to celebrate a life fully lived" by "embracing the community, creating meaningful, memorable experiences and promoting balance," the release says.

"For me it's not about Gluek Beer. My focus is on the Gluek Beer drinker," Holcomb told GoMN.

She hopes to collaborate with other small business and breweries, and plans to make regular contributions to charities, including Feeding America and the University of Minnesota Bee Squad.

History of Gluek's

Back in 1857, Gottlieb Gluek, a German immigrant, started brewing Gluek's Beer on the banks of the Mississippi River in what would later become Minneapolis, according to Cold Spring Brewing Co.

By 1901, Gluek's was third in annual beer production in the area, behind Minneapolis Brewing Company (now Grain Belt) and Hamm's Brewery. Gluek's popularity continued to grow, and by 1941 it had gained 7 percent of the beer market in Minnesota. Just 20 years later, the beer was being distributed in 27 different states.

But in 1964, the Gluek family sold the brewery to a company in Wisconsin, and the Minneapolis brewery was eventually demolished. It returned in 1997 though under Cold Spring Brewing Company in St. Cloud.

Cold Spring made Gluek's for awhile, but in 2010 decided to stop producing the beer commercially in favor of another lower-priced brew called Northern, the Star Tribune reported.

The Gluek's brand lived on at Gluek's Restaurant in Minneapolis, which the Gluek family opened as an outlet to sell its beer back in 1902, according to the City of Minneapolis' website.

Holcomb acquired the Gluek's brand in 2015, and now Gluek's Beer will be commercially produced for the first time in seven years.

Holcomb's family has pretty close ties to the Gluek family. Her great grandfather was the right-hand man for the Gluek's and bought the Gluek's Bar and Restaurant building after prohibition ended.

"That's how Gluek Beer got into my blood originally," Holcomb said.

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