A pretty weird spot with a massive selection. The prices are pretty good but Iíd be wary of freshness here. The staff are knowledgeable but pretty creepy. Much like the building itself. Didnít eat or anything.
Johnís marketplace is basically an oversized, brightly lit if a bit run-down convenience store. If Bottleworks is Seattleís version of Belmont Station, North Star Beer Market is Seattleís version of Johns Marketplace. Cases and cases of west coast options, some hard to find. A much bigger selection of Belgians than Iíve seen elsewhere in Portland. You get the sense that by hunting through the dusty back shelves you might find some interesting rarities -- but itís not clear how appropriate the conditions would have been for aging over time.
Johnís Marketplace is a huge place packed with beer. If all or even most of their offerings were available in 12 ounce bottles, Iíd give full credit for selection. Most of their bottles are bombers, and while they have many hundreds if not well over a thousand beers, Iím not always sharing a bottle and donít want a bomber. Many excellent beers here. For the bottles they do have as 12-ouncers, you can buy them as singles or make your own 6-pack for a 5% discount.
Itís an old grocery store thatís overfilled with beer, wine and groceries. How they fit so much in such a tight space is beyond me. Top international selection in town. Fair price. knowledgeable and friendly peops
How do you rate Johnís? Itís like a fat girl whoís also rich. Selection is huge, but half of it is undrinkable. Prices are fair, but the place is a complete dive. (It has the smell of a cellar, and I donít mean that in a positive way.) I typically get decent service if I ask, but I also think Iíve been lied to on a number of occasions when Iím told they donít know what beer Iím talking about. I dunno, Iíll stop in once in awhile because itís on my way to a friendís house, but I wouldnít recommend it if you can go elsewhere.
I have now given up on Johnís after so many visits through the years. The selection is vast but nearly all bottles are stored WARM on shelves and out in the LIGHT. I see a lot of old releases collecting dust, and the sight of green Saison Dupont bottles sitting out in such a bright environment makes me shiver. I walked out without spending any money because I canít risk throwing it away on bottles in such bad shape. And in a town like Portland, there are so, so many other options where the beer is kept cold, out of light, and stock is rotated at a good pace. Scroll past.
Well this place looks more like a trucker hangout then an amazing beer store, but it is indeed amazing. Almost certainly the best or most amount of different beers Iíve ever seen. Shelves upon shelves of it. It is a bit tight and hard to spend the hours there I would like to. Tons of local stuff, and also a strong British and Irish section. Reasonable prices. Really great place.
This market store that looks like nothing except a place with an interest for vintage boards from the outside is actually both extraordinary and frustrating. Indeed, it probably stocks the greatest selection I have seen in any of the Pacific West Coast states. Rarities from abroad, plenty of local stuff, a lot of breweries from elsewhere in the US, there must be well above one thousand brands here. I would not be surprised if they stock twice as many labels as Belmont Station on the opposite side of Portland. Nevertheless, itís a frustrating spot for quantity seems to be ruling over quality. Indeed, a lot of the bottles we have bought and consumed within days after purchase were seriously oxidized and must have been hanging around the shelves for several months. In a land whose reputation stems before anything from hoppy beers, that does not work at all. In Portland, I generally want to discover a brewery I donít know about through their IPA and Johnís is doing them a disservice by offering old and stealeing IPAs.. although to the stores defense, rare are the products on which any bottling, fabrication or best by date is clearly mentionned. This brought forward a lot of frustration, but not enough to discount the store entirely. Only, when you go looking for rare Logdson, Lost Abbey, Deschutes, Alesmith, Alpine, Guineu, Baladin, lambics or whatever you fancy, please focus on bottles that can survive many months on the shelves.