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Phone support discontinued at northern brewer

I am very disappointed that phone support is no longer available. I order mostly from the website. However, there are times when problems or questions with order can be quickly resolved over the phone. That opportunity is no longer available to me.

hey Mike- I am sorry that you are disappointed with our recent change.
We have made some adjustments to best serve our growing customer base as quickly as possible. If you check out the “Contact Us” page at NorthernBrewer.com, you can see our available support channels. Text and Chat will be the fastest and the Customer Service team will be able to answer any of your questions. I hope you will find service through these other channels can also lead to a quick resolution of any issues, should they arise.

For questions about brewing/winemaking, you are on the right forum. We also suggest checking our newly designed Homebrew Help knowledge base at Expert Knowledge Base - This is knowledge compiled by the many Brewmasters past/present at Northern Brewer. The page should help to answer many of your questions, but if not, please follow up with our Brewmasters for more specific questions you may have.

We appreciate the feedback! Cheers, Todd J

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Although I understand the customer service at NB has ALWAYS been TOP notch. I’ve used the chat now feature and found it very easy and successful.

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To be honest, I’d rather chat than talk to support sites.

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Me had few question. Did chat with them. Much easier for me than making long distance call. And got answer right away

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sent them a text. I am now humming the phil collins song no reply at all :frowning:

I don’t know about the NB chat support but I often prefer chat myself. When I have used it on other places it’s much easier that going through some stupid menu and punching in numbers and then finally getting a humanoid that has a problem with the language and me with my poor hearing it gets ugly fast. I suspect the person on the other end has multi chats going but as long as I get my answer who cares.

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Oh and another thing after I get service don’t email for a rating. They should already know the rating. If I say thank you have a nice day, it was good. If I just say thank you it was alright. If I hung up, it was poor. If I swore at them and then hung up, well no I won’t be recommending them to a friend

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Something has to change! It is absolutely ridiculous that Northern Brewer has the only retail stores that I am aware of that you cannot call and speak to someone during standard business hours! If the support specific phone was hard or too expensive to maintain then publish the local stores phone numbers! I just got back from the West Allis (Milwaukee) store and found they gave me the wrong yeast. I would like to give them a quick call and ask if they have the yeast I need. But my only option is to drive 30 minutes just to find out if it’s worth it for me to drive 30 minutes!! If I lived an hour or two away, I would be apoplectic!

There…rant over. I’d say I felt better except I still don’t know whether I should start my yeast starter (with the incorrect yeast?) tonight or push back my brew day.

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Depends on the yeast I suppose

Next time you are there ask for the store number. Hard to believe they don’t have a number at all.
What was the yeast? I’m curious

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I drove back and found that Omega Oktoberfest was the correct substitution for Wyeast Bavarian Lager (that they were out of) and not Omega Bock that I thought. (I’m brewing a bock.) So I drove back there to find out that I did not need to drive back there.

Ouch. Traditionally NB customer service has been top notch.

Starting to wonder… historically bad customer service is a recipe for failure…

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I would have used any of those in a bock

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Although I agree there’s a couple things:

  1. give the customer the correct item
  2. have an avenue for the customer to contact you rather than in person

To make @barbarianbrewer Drive 3 mins is ridiculous. Kinda alarming that we keep hearing of poor customer service @nb_cs_tj

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The first time I was brewing I called up customer service and asked them some brewing questions they had some answers. That was nice

I support my LHBS as much as possible for just these reasons. I follow some local brewers on insta as well. I go often enough to the LHBS that I can keep up on others brew projects IRL. IRL = In Real Life for the non textspeakers.

I visit my LHBS pretty often, they’re about 20 minutes away. I agree, ANY brick and mortar store needs to be reachable by phone. Hard to believe they aren’t.

I’ve posted before about this and other losses of support for NB being red flags but I was assured by locals that all is well. @barbarianbrewer 's experience seems to disagree. Lack of phone support will lead to decrease in online orders so I hope the “happy” locals will keep the business going because I’m starting to hear the proberbial “swirling sound” of a business about to head down the tubes.

If the forum disappears you guys can find me here: Facebook

I have a couple local shops I can go to. The one I prefer is smaller but they have everything I need the people working there aren’t experts but they don’t try to pass themselves off as experts they’ll say or take out a chart to help look up substitutes. The other one is bigger with a brewery attached and are “know it alls” and are always giving their opinion even unsolicited. The other day I ran over there for some yeast because I had changed my mind about the stuff I had and smaked the 2 packs on the counter and put them in my pocket. They asked what I was doing. I said taking my wife to dinner then I’ll pitch it when I get home. They were aghast. I asked is that a problem? And they rolled their eyes. It’s not like I left it sitting in the kettle in the driveway. They said they are professional brewers I said I’ve had their beers and left at that hopefully they caught my eye roll

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There’s a fine line between geeky enthusiasm and busybody know-it-all

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