Best BCL that I know. The selection for the real beer is quite good, and the prices are as low as they go for this province. Good array of Belgians in particular.
Oakes (835) Vancouver, British Columbia | January 3, 2004| Updated January 8, 2004
Best in Western Canada, especially in the way they represent local micros. Also, the beer buyer for BCLDB is a beer geek, which means the imports are much more well-chosen than in Ontario. Atmospherically it's still a government store with typical know-nothing union staff. You won't want to linger, but you'll get a trunkfull of good beer.
I don’t know if this is the biggest Signature shop, yes it’s big, but it’s also a bit out of the centre, and beerwise BCL is still boring, and as in most American places beer is available either in bombers or 6-packs. F*** 6-packs!
I was surprised by the limited selection as I had envisioned a beer utopia. The large Belgian selection on their website is reduced to 3 shelves of a 4’ wall. No Abbaye des Rocs? (sob!) The staff were kind but work like ants in an erratic manner. They aren’t terribly beer knowledgeable but are more than keen to form a group of three and discuss: when they last had it, whether they’d ever seen it, how to spell it and confirm that they can order it to see what happens? Belgians available: Binchoise and Caricole. Local beers available: Whistler, Nelson, Granville Island, R&B, Cannery in bottles and Bowen Island in cans.
Reasonable shop. For state controlled. Good prices, good selection across the board. Nothing in fridges which is a downer.
Good selection of imports across the board. Service was a bit non caring but so it goes with a state run shop
It’s a bit cavernous and much of the floor space is dedicated to every wine you can get at the BCLS although there is a nice little grotto of fancy scotch if you’re into that. Servers can be slow and really treat beer as a commodity product. Selection-wise, it’s hard to fault them. If a beer is available in BC, it’s likely on their shelves unless it is only available at a specialty store or it has sold out. The good of that is at least they most likely have good turn-over of whatever you are buying so it should be relatively fresh.