San Francisco, near Japan Town, July 2008. Down the street from Hotel Majestic, stopped in and found wonderful cheese to go with beer and wine from shelves upon shelves. I found some great bottles, esp. Three Philosophers and Stoneís 12th anniversary Oatmeal Stout. The cashier was not only well informed on all the store contained, but also downright enthusiastic about Stone beers and California brewing in general. How wonderful to have a beautifully stocked, thoughtful store so close by. BevMo should migrate north.
ElGaucho (285) Minnetonka, Minnesota | July 13, 2004| Updated December 21, 2005
12/21/05: SF Bayshore location: Easily the best Bevmo Iíve been to. Far more American craft brew singles than the RC location, and they now carry AleSmith! 6/30/05: No Stone or Bear Republic this time. Went to Whole Foods Redwood City 1/2 mile away and they had them as well as the ability to purchase all beers as singles. No brainer.
On a recent trip to San Francisco, I also visited the Geary St. location in San Francisco. The free underground parking was a plus. The store itself was cramped, making the use of a shopping cart difficult. The store is also not very well organized and the staff is not very knowledgeable about beer. I called ahead to this store and to the Bayshore store to see if they had Stone Old Guardian and in both instances the person on the phone thought I was talking about wine and couldnít tell me without looking if they had it. The do have a very large selection of California microbrew and brewpub bombers in their coolers from the likes of Marin Brewing, Moylans, Hoptown, etc., and a reasonably good selection of Stone beers was also available. Nice selection, although from what I understand, not as good as some of the larger stores.
These are always great stores to hit when you can find them. Iíve been to 4 different ones on the pensiula and they always have a great local selection of micros from all over CA and West Coast. Not so much from east coast or midwest, but thier way, this is the best chain that consitently delivers for great selection.
Over the years Iíve driven by this place a number of times and never thought to stop in. In November I walked by it but they were already closed for the day. Finally took a walking tour up and down Van Ness yesterday and stopped in. I have to say that I was very pleasantly surprised and that this is one of the better Bevmo locations that Iíve been to. The building goes back pretty far and they have one very long aisle of beer just past / around the corner from the fridges (that also have beer in them) on the left side of the room. Theyíve got the usual stuff that Bevmo carries and then some. Firestone, Stone, Ballast Point, Lagunitas, Lost Abbey, Port, Sierra Nevada, Speakeasy, the usuals from California. Then thereís Heretic, Schubros, Triple Voodoo, and a few others that I canít remember that I donít always see at Bevmo. The big national brands (non-California based) like Dogfish Head, Boulder, Widmer, Sam Adams, etc are all there naturally as are the standard Belgian, German, and British imports. I guess what makes this Bevmo stand out in my opinion is the sheer volume of beer and beer that isnít covered in dust. I really only travel up Van Ness when Iím headed to the north bay but if Iím on foot in the area again Iíll likely stop back in to grab some bottles. Parking sucks here though so be warned.
I shop at my local Albany store. My advice with a place like Bevmo, is to get to know the beerguy. I have been taken into the inner sanctum to taste beers while shopping. The selection is large, but beers seem to disappear sometimes. You get to really liking one and then poof. They tell me that the deal is that if you want to sell at Bevmo, you have to sell at ALL the Bevmoís. Not conducive to very small breweries. Other tan that, it is place with great customer perks,.
Fairly good selection of west coast brews, but only sold in 6-packs or more (except bombers). Rather poor choice of belgian and soso for other countries (Uk, Germany). Overall good service. (Geary bevmo)
Came here by accident as we turned ourselves around and were going north instead of south. Oh well. Like most BevMos, big selection, but nothing really that jumps out at you. Lots of the typical imports from Europe and all the other usuals like Firestone, Stone, Ommegang, etc. Not really worth much of a thought. Looked like they could maybe be expanding next door?
All BevMos are similar within a given region. However, there seems room for local products in most of them. So itís worth stopping by any of them every so often to see what new things have arrived. Lots of old standards all the time; so lots of same old, sameold. Beer is low margin compared to other beverages, so it doesnít get major attention. Hence no one seems to care about seeking out product; they wait for the distributors it seems. I usually find something new, at least seasonally, in the Walnut Creek BevMo.
IrishBoy (116) Bakersfield, California | June 6, 2008| Updated August 31, 2009
Been in Bevo-Mos all over. Lots of local stuff and good prices.
3fourths (1561) Boulder, Colorado | August 16, 2004| Updated January 21, 2013
Visited the Geary location. They need to have more singles, but I guess they arent into that. Found some good bottles from local places, but bought mostly bombers and 1/2 magnums. Beer was in the back on 3-4 rows of shelves and in some coolers. Only had 2003 Stone RIS, not 2004 so they are not on top of things and may be lazy waiting for things to sell out before getting new releases.