Steep & Brew closes State Street location after more than 30 years

Steep & Brew opened in 1979, and moved to its State Street location in 1983, where it served customers for more than 30 years. 

Image By: Kaitlyn Veto

The well-known coffee shop Steep & Brew closed its flagship State Street location Tuesday after more than 30 years of business in downtown Madison.

Steep & Brew opened in 1979 on Williamson Street before moving in 1983 to the 500 block of State Street, which served as an alternative to the bar scene, according to the company’s mission statement.

“It’s got a lot of history, a lot of regulars and a lot of wonderful things about it,” said Heidi Grede, café manager and social media coordinator at Steep & Brew. “The owner just decided it was maybe time to move on from having a café.”

Despite closing down the storefront, Steep & Brew is not done completely: It licensed its name to a location near West Towne Mall.

Steep & Brew will also sell coffee to various grocery chains such as PDQ Food Stores and stores across nine states, Grede said.

For owner Mark Ballering, the change is a semi-retirement, as he has managed the operations of the business since its founding.

“We also provide coffee for UW, so we’re still going to have a presence for campus and for students,” Grede explained. “It’s bittersweet that we’re changing a bit, but when it’s time to move on, it’s time to move on.”

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