The demand for Icelandic Christmas beer has never been greater, but the smaller, independent breweries who produce it fear they may not be able to keep up with demand.
Jón Gunnlaugsson, operating manager of the Ölvisholt brewery, predicted that their products could clear off the shelves a few days before Christmas. “The fact is, though, that few producers are ready to produce much more than they are comfortable with selling. The sales window for Christmas beer at the state alcohol stores is six weeks, and if people overproduce, the product needs to be disposed of at cost.”
Ólafur Þröstur Ólafsson of the brewery Bruggsmiðjan – whose Christmas beer Jóla Kaldi was sold out within two weeks – told Viðskiptablaðið, “We had produced about 80,000 bottles last year. This year, we made 135,000 and that was nowhere near enough.”
Ölvisholt also exports beer to Scandinavia and Canada, and their Christmas beer has been pretty popular in Sweden.
Our advice: get out to the stores now, and search high and low. Supply is limited, so you might have a hard time finding any left at all.
Kaldi: The Coolest Beer in Iceland