As craft beer drinkers, we’re open to possibilities and unusual flavors. There are over 2,000 craft breweries in operation in the US today that are constantly pumping out new beers that we’re dying to try. But as any craft beer lover knows, these brews aren’t always easy to get your hands on. Most typical liquor stores don’t carry a large craft beer selection; the shelves are filled with Budweiser and Coronas.
Bottle shops are here to save the day, they offer a huge selection of beers to fit exactly what you’re craving and they are often creative in the perks they offer. They create a fun atmosphere to enjoy beer and lose track of a couple hours while learning more about your favorite brews. What we love most is that bottle shop owners are passionate beer buffs themselves, and actually enjoy talking to you. This is not your average liquor store experience where you’re looking to get in and out with a 30 rack.
Here are our five favorite bottle shops in the U.S. today.
City Beer Store – San Francisco, CA
Since May 2006 owners Craig and Beth Wathen have aimed to create a, “unique shopping experience rather than a formula sell.” Enjoy a fresh craft beer on tap while you browse the shelves and also create a six-pack with any six beers in the store. Located on 1168 Folsom St, this is a perfect bottle shop to enjoy your beer buying experience.
Good Beer – East Village, New York City
Not only can you sip delicious beers in pints and tasting flights while you browse, they have good eats too. Local chorizo, kielbasa, vegan sausage, pretzels, and hot dogs are all available while you enjoy your brew and chat up the knowledgeable staff. Choose from nearly a thousand different American craft brews, this is a truly unique beer experience.
Hop City – Atlanta, GA
Hop City has one of the largest and most diverse beer selections of any bottle store in the country. With over 1,700 beers, there is always something new to try or take home in a growler. What really makes Hop City so cool is their incredible knowledge of home brewing and all the supplies to get you started. With all the essential products from craft kegs to brewing classes, they have everything you need to be the next craft beer superstar.
Bottleworks – Seattle, WA
Seattle isn’t just for coffee lovers and the beer experts at Bottleworks are proof of that. With over 900 beers, seasonal offerings, and a large selection of ciders, Bottleworks has everything you could ask for. Sixteen taps showcase the newest local Seattle beers and special events and tastings will keep you coming back.
Best Damn Beer Shop – San Diego, CA
So you’ve been put in charge of dinner for the night. Look no further than the Best Damn Beer Shop. With all things local and organic, they have everything you’ll need for dinner and most importantly the beer to accompany the meal. Bonus: they have great equipment and guidance for home brewing.