Pennington Beer Guide: Your Pennington guide to beer, beer bars, breweries and brewpubs

Latest reviews from Pennington

88 /100 1595 REED RD, UNIT 2
“I found this a diamond in the rough. Styles right up my alley, nice choice and decent bottles and a can to go. I stopped by early on a Saturday and had the place to myself. If this place was close, I would be here weekly and need to get back here again. Right up my alley.“
hopdog 817 days ago
90 /100 1595 REED RD, UNIT 2
“James & Melissa are running one of the most ambitious, interesting and well executed blending operations in the states. Incredibly knowledgable proprietors and staff - top notch. The location is pretty big - in sort of an office park in Jersey, tons of parking, fits a ton of people. Layout has changed as they have figured out their space, the big warehouse now houses the bar as well as lots of tables / benches for seating. The beer is wonderful if you know what to expect, some still / some cask / some tap / some current bottles to go and some vintage bottle offerings... variety has been ramping recently as they get older. Generally a few bottles and or spontaneous cans (novel) to go. If you like spontaneous beer / lambic (style) and want to see one of the more traditional and ambitious operations focused on the style this should definitely be on your radar.“
drsandman 854 days ago
86 /100 1595 REED RD, UNIT 2
“An excellent place. It is basically split into two areas: the section where there is a bar for service and a little standing room, and then through a hallway there’s a massive room partly dedicated to blendery usage and partly to patrons. There is also a large barrel room, which is accessible during tours. Given all the space, this place can handle crowds pretty well, which they did during the First open day. At this first opening, there were five beers available, some were very good, most were outstanding. Seriously, this place is strong right out of the blocks, and once the barrel-program is fully operational, Referend could become a big name. During my visit they only had beer available on draft (cask), but they are planning to release the first bottles in Q1 2016. No flights available, just buy by the glass. Friendly and efficient service. Nice free tour with a knowledgeable guide. They have a small selection of merchandise. Food truck selling Belgian waffles, and I think they will get different vendors to rotate.

Overall, this place made a great first impression. I am excited to see where things go from here.“
Leighton 862 days ago
42 /100 1595 REED RD, UNIT 2
“Not impressed with any part of this place, except the ambition and maybe the cool expansive setup of the tasting room. Cool to see an American brewer attempting lambic-style beers, but the execution is all off, both with the beer and tasting room experience. They had 4 beers on cask and 3 on regular draft. No flights or anything smaller than an 8 oz pours for $6-9. There’s problems 1 and 2 - serving size and ridiculous prices. Problem 3: the beer itself is just not good - highly acidic, lots of dirty water and few redeeming qualities. Problem 4: blaring loud, obnoxious, hardcore / emo music playing. All in all, big thumbs down on the execution. I don’t understand the praise for this place.“
mcberko 895 days ago
82 /100 1595 REED RD, UNIT 2
“Not really a brewery in the normal sense...this is a wild beer blender...so they purchase their wort or partially fermented beer elsewhere outside the state (they said NJ doesn’t allow wild yeast brewing)...from 3 breweries they told me...all...or at least two I think from Maine. They age and mix from a large number of different varieties of wooden barrels to make their beers. The place is quite good looking with a bar/serving area as well as a very large drinking area in another room with a lot of seating. The people were very nice and helpful. My only complaint is no flights...and the beer is quite expensive...as the previous rater says (and it looks like we visited the same day)...not sure of their business model...a lot of overhead here. Problem is...with no flights you need to pay for full pours to try what for a fair number of people will be unfamiliar styles. Additionally, note that the pours are small...about 8oz (could’ve been 10oz but looked like 8)...and low ABV (4-5 1/2%) for $5-8/pour. My favorites were the "Gloria" Berliner Messe...fermented and aged in Sauvignon Blanc barrels and dry-hopped with Mosiac...as well as the special called "The Iceman Cometh" faro beer using lambic and meerts to which freshly pressed Riesling icewine juice has been added. I’m glad to see a place like this in NJ...I hope they do well...but I think they still have some fine tuning to do (understandable though...only open a month when I visited and not many other blenderies to measure themselves to).“
PRBeer 1463 days ago
86 /100 1595 REED RD, UNIT 2
“Braves the snow storm to take long drive down here in my hunt for faro. Got to give props for going this route this early. Big space amazingly clean, lots of barrels. Clearly some money behind this. 5 casks available 3 berliners, an unblended, and a faro. Other than weirdos like myself not sure how business model will work but I’m thankful for it. Dry friendly staff great care in product. Tasting room decent size and then much larger space near brewery as well. Damn far unfortunately from where I live.“
Jow 1474 days ago
92 /100 1595 REED RD, UNIT 2
“New brewery. Decent crowd for opening. They focus on all sours and lambic styles. The lambic styles were the best by far though base berliner was also quite good. Worth checking out. They are currently open twice monthly.“
jtclockwork 1508 days ago
74 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Average selection overall but they had a few things I haven’t come across elsewhere in NJ. Didn’t run into any staff in the beer section but the employees at the counter we’re extremely friendly and were able to converse about beer with knowledge. Prices were about average. Decent spot but I wouldn’t necessarily go out of my way to visit.“
conway 2663 days ago
76 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“This store is the reason I have become a "beer" person. I drive by the store on my way home and at least once a week I have to stop in to browse. The bottle selection is great, though I do find sometimes the bottles can be a bit out of date. Otherwise the selection is fantastic and they give a 10% discount if you get 6 bottles in a build your own 6-pack. The staff doesn’t seem too knowledgeable, but they are helpful and always willing to order you a case of something that you want to try. Overall though, I love this place and I tell everyone about it. Thanks for opening me up to the beer world.“
ohmzoned 3706 days ago
78 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Decent selection overall, but they have some rare beers that no one else in the area has. Prices are pretty good, and if you’re looking for something different, definately worth checking out.“
lcdumchus 3720 days ago
68 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Staff isnt very helpful or knowledgeable. Some inventory is quite dusty and old, which can be great for special finds, but not all the time. Despite the above, it is still a good hidden gem on the Pennington Circle in NJ“
claspada 3815 days ago
76 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“A good selection of macro’s and some hard to find brews. Place is great for a PA person who wants to build a six and save a couple bucks instead of buying a case because of our crappy laws. Liquor wise a good selection but the prices were not discounted. Beer wise they gave me 10% off each bottle because i filled two six packs so that saved me some money. A good place to either add countries or find some rare beers. Decent selection of micro brews and some hard to find, but they seem to specialize in all styles from around the world.“
italianjohn 3889 days ago
62 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Service is passable, but no experts. Selection is incredible, with some real oddities and far reaching world beer inventory. Not a fancy place like more moodern stores, just an old fashioned liquor store. Aside from beer, their hard alcohol is average, but they do have a huge wine section.“
NJBeerman013 4033 days ago
72 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Feel like as i go more places circle liquors, just seems more expensive with a short selection of great beers. I bet a lot of the beer just sits in the fridges, beer on shelves is hit or miss, also seems like they are shipping stock from other stores so maybe other stuff will show up.“
vtafro 4131 days ago
70 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“prices are reasonable, but since the beer manager, matt, left, the service hasn’t been what it used to be. selections great“
HoppyHippie 4274 days ago
86 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“I’be been coming here for years, even back when it was called Circle Liquors. I live in PA which has no resonable place to buy beers because of the crazy state laws. It takes me about 20 minutes to get to Super Saver and it’s well worth it. They have a great selection of beers (and wines) and the staff is always willing to help you out and even order things if you can’t find it. Prices are the same as other places but occasionally you can find a deal. Again, I always go here because of the selection, and that’s what it’s really all about anyway.“
gogaterz 4321 days ago
74 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“I stop by every few months. A nice selection. Most beers are in a refregerator. Decent prices. If you live in the area, It’s a pretty good place. I wouldn’t drive more then 15 miles to go here.“
ScoWRee 4386 days ago
68 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“This store is ok, not up to all the hype ive herd about it. Had a desent selection, not the greatist help but i was there on off hours. Ok store but not worth teh drive as it is 40 minnets for me.“
fizzban 4408 days ago
74 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“This place was the shit, now it is going in the shit. They had Heavyweight, 2005 WWS’s, 2002 120’s, 2000 Monsters, Goose Island Matilda, and old-skool rogue impy stouts from 2001. All their beer is kept cold, which helps since most of it is aged. I went in and bought most of the good stuff left. The beer guy doesn’t know much either.“
TheRealBastard 4472 days ago
72 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Circle liquors was where I was able to sample the beers I read about in Michael Jackson’s books. Being local, I went there religiously for many years upon turning 21, many years before there was any place comparable within many miles. Then the selection declined and the prices, which were always a little higher than anywhere else became ridiculous, with nothing worth drinking priced less than $10 a six. I stopped going for the remaining years it was Circle. I’ve been back 3 times since Circle became Super Saver, and each time the selection and prices have improved. It is my beer heaven again! I hope it stays that way, I get so sick of the lack of imports at most stores. I hope it stays that way.“
beeryswine 4577 days ago
62 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“dmac... I disagree with the service rating... When you ask for help, you get it! It’s not a restaurant where you are paying for service, and I have never experienced service with beer selection. However, you must ask. They do know their products, unlike the competitive Shop Rite, almost right next store. If you know beer well enough to post on this site, you should recognize a great shoppe when you find as opposed to punishing for it’s shortcomings. For the prices you pay, it is more than fair, even under market... Way to go Reddy, another phenomenal purchase!!!“
winesnob 4578 days ago
72 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Stopped here with willblake after a Triumph run. A large beer section with most selections available cold. I saw a few beers here that I have never seen in NJ before, Struiselensis, Triple Exultation, Atlantic Brewing S.O.B. to name a few of the ones I picked up. Fantastic sinlges section but be warned you WILL pay more for singles. As for service there was none. We must have been in there beer section ten to fifteen minutes with no one asking if we needed any help. When it came time to check out some tool bag asked what wine goes with lamb, now let me point out it’s the 4th of July, grab a beer and a burger pretentious douche. Well both kiss ass clerks run to help him figure out what shiraz or what the fuck to pair with his meat and actually needed to call in a third clerk for assistance. Excuse me dicks I would like to pay for this beer please or should I just walk out with it. Well go for the beer but don’t expect anything from the service.“
dmac 4582 days ago
88 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Wow! This place is like a candy store for beergeeks. They carry Stone, DFH, Fantome, Boon, ect. Many vintage brews on the shelf. If you can get to this store, make the trip. Awesome selection and reasonable prices.“
imadeadguy 4665 days ago
82 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“This is the place to go if you want a great selection, a knowledgeable staff, and a fair price. The best singles selection I’ve seen anywhere. They’re friendly, honest, and while I’ve had a chilly response once or twice to inquiries about particular beers they did not have on hand, the service, generally speaking is phenomenal. Go out of your way.“
lemasney 4699 days ago
58 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“A decent selection from Supersaver Somerville. Though the supply seems to be dwindling by the day. Every day craft beers, and still some decent vintages, though nothing terribly rare. Had great service the first time, unfortunately I seem to have met the beer nazi this afternoon. Other employees, the two previous times I was there, allowed 2 bottles per person, and today 1, because he didn’t have many left. Eh, was a decent stop on the way to PA, but I don’t see myself going back any longer.“
egajdzis 4800 days ago
90 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“I was working in this area, so I decided to check it out. I was so impressed by the selection here...unbelievable. This place is right up there with Oaktree in South Plainfield IMO. They have an enormous singles collection with all of the big Belgians (including a Westy 8). They have several rare beers on display. This place is worth the trip.“
RiverHorse 4820 days ago
74 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Found this place by accident and have since dropped by a couple of times. Located on a somewhat annoying traffic circle, this place is not too far from I-95 in NJ, just a few exits from the PA border. Interesting look inside, wide rows with very little beer stacked all around, but a nice amount of cooler space dedicated to beer. They have lots of singles that are decently priced, although very little in the way of "amazing finds". Decent selection of Belgians and special edition brews. This place can’t come close to some of the better stores further north, but if you are in the area or coming from PA its worth a stop.“
JB175 5101 days ago
80 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Great place. I have a buddy that lives down the street from this place. They have like 800 different beers in stock. They have everything from obscure micros to Ballantine longnecks. Can’t beat that.“
Yankovitch333 5135 days ago
90 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Found this great store on this ratebeer page when planning to travel cross-continent to attend a reunion which would include a beer tasting. Took the group and we were impressed. ALL the beer - singles to cases - displayed in glass-front coolers. We selected beers for the tasting from our home areas all accross the country, and beers from our world-wide travels. They presented well at the tasting. Not a wiff of skunk in the whole bunch! Great selection of German dorf brews! Even greater selection of good American craft beers. Many craft beers brewed in the Northeast U.S.A. are available in multiple package sizes multiple bottle sizes, singles, 4 or 6 packs and cases too. Maybe there is a better store somewhere, but if you are stuck in NE PA with its stupid liquor laws, this is THE place to find singles for tasting.“
jekelso 5167 days ago
78 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“I stumbled across this place by accident. I’d say about half the square footage is dedicated to beer. The singles are nicely displayed and organized along a long wall of coolers. Sixers and 4 packs are in a different section. Good selection of imports and regionals. My biggest complaint is the price of singles. Most of them start at two bucks and go up from there. Plus two of the singles I bought were past their prime. If you can’t make it up to Oak Tree in South Plainfield, or State Line in Elkton, this is your best bet for singles. Just be sure you are getting fresh ones.“
illinismitty 5348 days ago
74 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Quite a selection of single beers and a good selection of local six packs. Quite pricey though if you’re looking for something you can find at most liquor stores. Wine selection is less than stellar.“
jdjuice 5590 days ago
78 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“wow, this place is great tons of cold singles, and plenty of 4 packs and 6 packs, i get beer here two times a week, tons of rare beers from all around the world, the best liquor store near me. i have bought beer from belgium,brazil,thailand,japan,ukraine, russia, france, germany, austrailia, austria, Poland, England, Trinidad and micros from all over the US from here. definitely one of my favorite spots.“
stegosaurus 5670 days ago
72 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“I make a point of stopping here every time I’m in the area (the store is within five miles of Princeton.) Large wood and glass doors open to reveal an almost surreal sea of 70’s style maroon carpeting and wallpaper. As mentioned below, there are a couple of chainsmoking old guys that work the registers that add to the old-school charm. In all the times I’ve been here, not a single person has offered to help me, but I can’t count that against the place. The selection is nice. They claim either 650+ or 700+ bottles depending on what sign you look at, but I think that might be just a bit of an exaggeration. In any case, there are enough beers here to keep most anybody satisfied, and all of them are cold. Don’t expect to be blown away by extremely obscure Belgians, West Coast micros, or vintage ales. Definitely worth a look for those in the area or those who haven’t seen what a decent beer selection looks like yet. The prices here are good, for the most part. I hope they keep up the good work.“
Ponchodan 5687 days ago
72 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Remarkably easy to find. (my wife’s cousin’s husband works near there). Speaking as an Ohioan - great selection - I walked out of there with almost 40 new bottles of beer - only 3 were imports. For me, they had a fantastic selection of Eastcoast micros. Lot’s of imports - not many Belgians, lots of lame Russian lagers. The two younger guys working there were absolutely no help - they could barely manage to mumble a "thankyou" when I checked out. The one guy did put my beer in six pack holders tho.“
Drew 5896 days ago
54 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“The last fet times I have gone here it has been disappointing. There are better places to get beer, and it seems like many of the scarcities that have been coming out recently are being passed by by this place. I do not recommend the trip.“
MaiBockAddict 5917 days ago
84 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“I think the first time I went in here, I was singing to myself in joy for 15 minutes. Wonderful selection of NJ and Pency brews (though not all of them good of course), and everything else--all in singles. Claim is for at least 650 single bottles for sale at any given time, I think. Average price about $1.75 to the bottle, until you get to the ritzy stuff.“
beaconstreet 5938 days ago
86 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“Comedy staff, amazing selection. Get there if you can“
Jine 5946 days ago
80 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“I went here about 6 months ago. Huge selection of bottles. The weirdest part of my visit, was the 2 chain smoking old men at the cash registers. It was like I was standing in a bar when I was in the check out line. I will be shopping at this store again.“
hopdog 5959 days ago
78 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“If the beer selection there has been scaled back, I shudder to think what I might have been in for a year ago. The largest beer cooler I’ve EVER seen. I very easily dropped nearly $100 on unique singles (all cold, but what the hell). Found a shelf dedicated to French artisinal ales, they had Ramstein and RVB, they had nearly full lines of so many East Coast/NJ esp brewers. Prices were up there, it is a wealthy area, but the selection made it worth it. (09/25/04) Staff uninterested in helping; I had to box my own beer, which is fine by me.“
willblake 5961 days ago
86 /100 222 RTE. 31 N
“See Place description. This store rivals Hi-Time (CA) and Premier Gourmet in Buffalo. The difference is, everything at Circle is in coolers. Rumor has it that as of 3/04, Circle's beer selection has been scaled back drastically. This is uncomfirmed, so you might want to call 'em and ask.“
austinpowers 6203 days ago