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Kelowna  

Viking restaurant opens

With popular shows like Vikings, Game of Thrones and Thor gaining worldwide fan bases, and lovers of norse mythology becoming the norm, a new Viking theme restaurant is gaining buzz in Kelowna.

The new joint – called Muninn's Post – officially opened Monday and owners promise it will be a social fusion of the new and the old.

“A distinguished social alternative, influenced by Norse culture and mythology with viking-esque decor,” Muninn's explains on its website.

The new viking hang-out is run and created by a young Kelowna couple, Leagh and Siobhan Jennings-Bates, who both love norse and fantasy culture.

“It is a universal nerd haven,” laughs Leagh. “Not just vikings, but fantasy and nerdy type things.”

The pub-style venture was inspired by a similar establishment in Vancouver called the Storm Crow Tavern that featured boardgames, craft beer and local food and drink.

“When we moved back here, we realized most of the pubs here had the same vibe: the sports bar type where it is loud, hard to have a conversation and there is a big focus of what is on TV,” explains Jennings-Bates.

“We wanted to create a space that distanced itself from that. It is a viking theme restaurant; there are lots of boardgames and we have one big TV in front of some couches that just plays movies and nerdy shows and stuff like that.”

They promise to serve large pints of beer and feature local honey mead, all poured from an Viking-esque dragon boat bar that dominates the eating area, for a full effect.

They have partnered with Meadow Vista Artisan Farm Winery in Kelowna for the traditional mead, while featuring local beers on tap at affordable prices to entice students in the door. To stick with their theme, they also have one beer on tap called Odin's Gift, from Odin Brewing Company in Seattle.

Leagh primarily works the kitchen and Siobhan runs the front, but they both jump into each others' roles and run the entire place together.

The restaurant will not feature true Viking food, as the Kelowna clientele may not love fermented meats and burnt sheep's head, but will feature down-to-earth pub food like Mac and Cheese, Steak Pie and Poutine.

“We have a lot of homemade stuff. We are not ordering any premixed stuff, so we hand-make our burgers and our food. Our bread is supplied by Tripke Bakery next door. We want a more hearty homegrown feel to it,” explains Jennings-Bates.

He says his love of the culture comes from norse mythology courses in university while Siobhan says she is an enthusiast to the core.

“Aside from being extremely badass in general, their society loved drinking, feasting, and having a good time (and why wouldn't they?). They had rich culinary offerings because, not only were they farmers, but great fishermen and hunters as well, and of course they were passionate about a good drink too,” writes Siobhan on their website.

The atmosphere will include heavily constructed cedar tables, technology boxes that encourage you to drop you cellphone and be present in the moment, as well as boardgames to use and play with friends. The name comes from that given to the pet raven of Norse god Odin, who flew around the world collecting information and relaying it back to him.

“She remembers everything she's ever seen so she is called the Raven of Memory. We wanted to create a space, in this day and age where everyone is focused on their phone and emails and computers, where you can come and put everything down and remember what it was like before all this stuff came out,” explains Jennings-Bates.

You can check out the new nerd-friendly hang out on Bernard Avenue near the Towne Centre Mall.  

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