A town still hiding rumrunner's tunnels from Prohibition

A lake so compelling people tattoo its outline on their bodies

A Norwegian girl who dreams in flavors

And an American boy who distills dreams into reality



What makes Vikre Distillery what it is?  

-Lake Superior (aka, the world's greatest!) water

-Culinary creativity woven into all our flavors - Drawing on our founder's background in food and recipe development,

we make what we truly love and hope you'll love it too

-Passionate stewardship of the resources we use in making our spirits - we are a triple bottom line company, meaning we prioritize people and planet as much as profit in all our decision making

We never planned to become distillers.  But one frigid January night, Lake Superior, vast, majestic, mysterious, called us with a bidding we could not refuse.  "Come," she whispered to us.  And we knew we would. 

The nature and culture of Northern Minnesota are our inspiration and terroir. The pristine beauty of Lake Superior, the North Woods and the Boundary Waters are distilled in the flavor of everything we make. It's difficult to imagine a more perfect place for making distilled spirits. We craft superior spirits that thoughtfully blend tradition and innovation.  We forage the Northwoods for wild botanicals; we use local and organic grains, handcrafted Minnesota oak barrels, and the clean, cold water of Lake Superior. Distilling the essence of this great watershed into the finest spirits possible is our passion. Doing so in a way that cares for this special place is our vocation. 


We’ve been working at desks in the big city, engaging our creative sides only on evenings and weekends, and we’ve had it. We ditched our careers on the East Coast and headed home to the Northwoods of Minnesota.  It’s time to get creative, to put down roots in a place we love, and to get our hands dirty making something that we can all enjoy.


Emily is a native Duluthian who holds a PhD in food policy and behavioral theory from Tufts University. She is a nationally recognized food and drinks writer.  She is a regular columnist for the James Beard award-winning site Food52, and contributes to a wide swath of other publications including Lucky Peach, Minnesota Public Radio and Norwegian American Weekly, in addition to being the mastermind of the cooking blog Five and Spice fiveandspice.com.  She once accidentally won a wine-tasting contest in France. She’s the palate of the operation and resident mad scientist.


Joel has followed a crooked path. Exciting highlights: Getting bitten by a bat while mist netting at night in a Costa Rican rain forest. Working with nuns running a clinic on a landfill in Tijuana. Leaving medical school to focus on global health and starting not one, but two! internationally acclaimed non-profits that fight HIV-AIDS and promote water sanitation in parts of Africa. Learning how to distill a moonshine called “the tears of the lion” in a mud hut using clay pots from Dani, his Kenyan "grandmother." Now Joel is using his background in strategic planning, plus his hobby-honed mechanical skills, to assemble and run our crazy amounts of equipment.


click here to Meet the rest of our team


Distillery Visitor Center and Cocktail Room Hours

Monday - Friday — 2-11pm

Saturday & Sunday — 12-11pm

We will be closed on Monday, June 25th for a staff party

Free tours daily at 5:30pm

And Here is Our Current Cocktail Menu

P.S. we can wash and reuse bottles! Bring in your used bottles and get $1 off a cocktail for each one



You can keep up with our progress, get cocktail recipes, and be the first to hear about special offerings at our blog.




525 Lake Avenue South, Suite 102 Duluth, MN 55802

(218) 481-7401

A Spirited Reflection of One Watershed

Established in 2012