I’ve been to Oliver’s before and this place is pretty much the same thing. Not much to look at inside or out with a mini warehouse setup but they make up for that with a pretty good beer selection. They’ve got kegs and a growler station as well. The guy stocking the shelves offered me some assistance and the cashier was friendly too. My guess is this (or Oliver’s) will have the best selection in the Albany area, probably getting most of what’s distributed in the area. They are starting to get Captain Lawrence on a more frequent basis, which is good. Singles are available of almost everything to purchase as well, a nice added bonus.
Beer pit stop number 2 on my way back to Vermont from PA (visiting parents). Looked it up on ratebeer, seemed like a good stop. Pulled up to the store and thought it looked like a drug drop. OK, do I go in? I did and was quite impressed with their selection, holy crap! Talk about not judging a book by it’s cover, Night Shift Whirlpool and Santilli, Burial (NC), Kent Falls (CT) plus some up and coming NY brewers that I didn’t know of but got to talking with one of the sales guys and he talked about them and gave me some free samples of these up and coming brewers. So service is definitely up there. Value seemed reasonable for the Albany area. Plus, their mix-a-six packs they take $3 off. I know where I’m stopping at in Albany next time I’m there. Just ignore the outside and you all will be fine.
Franckg (55) Trois-Rivières, Quebec | August 25, 2016| Updated August 31, 2016
Visited August 13th 2016 around 7pm. Last beer stop before returning home after a week with Uncle Sam. Messy store without air conditioning (it was like 80 degrees Inside) 2 minutes from I-87. Fridges are reserved for 4 and 6-packs and generic brands. Great selection of american beers divided by brewery and a full aisle of imported from Belgium, Canada and UK. I found some rarities and barrel aged I didn’t see elsewhere. You can grab a single from pack. There was 2 employees they never came to me. At least they helped my girlfriend in her fruit beer searching. This place could be more serious if they would remove dust on bottles. I wouldn’t have the impression that most of the stuff is out of date. Nice place overall but I prefer the Oliver’s Beverage a few miles away.
Though smaller than Oliver’s (their sister store), Westmere is just as good. They’ve remodeled quite a few times over the last year or two and are constantly expanding.
There’s two main walk-in coolers. On the left side is all the macros with a lot of singles and 40oz. On the right side is the craft beer cooler. Mostly 6 and 12 packs, with various bombers.
There’s a growler station with about 10 taps. They offer 16, 32 and 64oz pours. Selection changes almost daily.
I recommend the seasonal shelf right across from the counter. Probably the freshest beer in the store.
There’s a secret clearance rack behind the seasonal selection. I’ve found bombers for as little as $2 here! Other 12oz bottles and cans go for as little as 49 cents! It’s usually expired stuff, though (or stuff though to be expired).
Absolutely fantastic selection of Belgian and German beer. A huge cider selection as well. Plenty of American breweries all sorted by state. They offer a "mix a six" discount where you get $3 off. They will let you take a single out of ANY box in the store. I’ve literally opened mix packs and cases just to get one bottle or can and they didn’t care.
Staff is a bunch of great guys. All very friendly and they definitely know their beer. Jeremy and Jeff are the managers and will help you out no problem.
Almost forgot: best empties return system anywhere. Just bring your empties to the back and drop them on the floor or in a cart and when you check out tell them how many empties you had and they’ll credit the refund towards your purchase. I’ve never once been second guessed on my empties.
I always look for reviews from out of towners as I believe that locals tend to over hype places. I live outside of Buffalo so I am not a local.
The place looks like a mini mart from the outside and has a lot of BMC neon and BMC beer in the front windows. When you walk in, more than half the store is filled with craft beer. They have a better than average selection and it seems they get a mixed distribution of downstate and upstate distributors but don’t really have any special or rare that I can’t get back home. The guys working there were friendly and willing to answer questions. Their prices were mixed, some things high, some things were average. I would not return here myself and not because of service, selection, or price..because I can almost of the beer they carry at home.
Visited in Sept.2012.The choice of beers in very good,from the U.S. and imported.well placed easy to find,good and friendly service,very helpfull.It does look old and O.K. clean, but that was not what I was looking for,I was looking for a good choice of beers and I found it.
Probably the best place upstate NY for us Quebecers to get some outstanding US and import brews. Beats Winooski Beverage Warehouse in VT hands down. Some bottles had a layer of dust on them however so I avoided those just in case (unless they were really high abv). Staff is helpful, but I didn’t ask many questions. They pulled out a Dogfish 120min from under the counter outta the blue and simply said: "We also have this, if you want" after I brought for about 200$ of brews at the cash register! I was happy to oblige! Definately worth checking out, don’t let the outside of the building fool you.
I am from the Detroit area, but stop in here when I am in the Albany area. They have a great section of beers I can't get back home like Alesmith, Firestone Walker etc. The staff is very helpful also. Worth checking out....
Visited for the first time, September 18, 2012. Wow! That is an ugly place and a little dirty, even the shopping carts are crusted. At least the selection is very good, especially the U.S. products, although the selection of imported beer is not spit at. Well divided by state and by country, it is quite easy to find what you are looking for, or at least if you do not know what you want to buy. The staff is very friendly and they are willing to help you if you ever need them. I would go back if I’m in Albany again!
Came here to grab a beer for the hotel room. Large selection sorted by country. Plenty of beer to tick. Lots of it seemed to be collecting dust so check freshness. Some 6 packs, bombers, and magnums in the cooler. Prices were fair.