Royal Liquors - Watt's Mill
Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 17 | Reviews: 17
4.3/5 rDev +4.6%
quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $$
Several of the previous reviewers have noted "the beer guy," and in a favorable way. I'm sorry to report to you that Chris had his last day in the store today. He told me he's leaving for a paraprofessional job with the Shawnee Mission schools as he prepares for a teaching career. I will miss him, as his knowledge FAR surpasses mine. I asked him a not-too-easy question today: What have you got that's close to an Alaskan spruce tips ale, and he didn't miss a beat, and recommended Scots Pine Ale by Williams Bros. Brewing Co., in Scotland. What surprised me was that he said he'd tried all of the selections they offered (a mixed 6-pack), and that this one was the one he'd thought he'd favor least, but it ended up being one he favored most. That ability to be objective, but discriminating, was what made Chris valuable to customers. Sadly, he said he didn't think his employer would try to replace him. The counter service is nothing to rave about, so my guess is that while the selection may continue to be outstanding for this region, we'll be pretty much on our own in making our choices.
I will say that Royal is great for giving you a range of offerings from the brewers they stock. If you like one item you've tasted somewhere, they'll give you a chance to see what else they've brewed. I took advantage of this today when I saw the display for O'Fallon Brewery, on the St. Louis side. They offer a "Smoke" smoked porter, which I thought I'd buy for the Sept. meeting of the KC Bier Meisters (as I'm anxious to discuss Alaska, where the style is well-known). Royal is still a place you owe it to yourself to visit.
09-14-2007 21:31:55 | More by GordonS
3.65/5 rDev -11.2%
quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Nice selection. Lots of Schlafly and some O'Fallon, (but the 5-day IPA hadn't made it there yet when I visited.) Surprisingly good selection of imports, especially Belgians. Some really high quality stuff here. Some helpful Rate Beer shelftags for the forgetful.
Found a couple bottles that were on the old side, but have generally been pleased with the quality. Decent selection of singles in the mix-a-six section.
*edit* - (less of a selection in the mix-a-six section this time, but not too bad - basically mixed a 6 with 3 each of two seasonal beers I missed out on - all were still fine despite a month or two past prime drinking age. Also note that although I often see several beers past their dates in here, I've had good luck buying them anyway and wishing for the best - had some great London Pride that was well past it's drink-by date just last weekend)
A little disappointed in the service, or lack thereof, I received on both visits...but then one was pretty late at night, and the other was on a Sunday. I'll be by again, hopefully soon, to give them another shot.
03-31-2007 22:51:29 | More by udubdawg
4.6/5 rDev +11.9%
quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
I really enjoyed myself at this establishment. When i first walked into this place i felt like a little kid at a candy store. But now the candy is more grown up and i am no longer a kid. The way they divided the liqour from the wine and from the beer was pretty good. Everything was very easy to find. The rums were all located in the same place. In the beer section they were divided by the freezer section, then the US microbrews. They had quite a few Belgian beers and also beers from just about anywhere else seperate into the propper location. The guy that handles the beer section is very knowledgeable and likes to talk about beer, which is good. He actually has been to Belgium, which i thought was great!!! I thought the selection was great (over 400 beers, 500 in the winter) and the service was superb.
01-10-2007 02:08:17 | More by CU570M
3.85/5 rDev -6.3%
quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
This is one of the better liquor stores for beer on the South side of KC. Pretty good selection of micros. Lots of European beers. Nice line up of Belgian, German, and British beers. They also have some pretty obscure Baltic and Russian beers. They allow you to build your own six pack from a selection of beers.
A good amount of cooler space is devoted to good beer. They seem to have upgraded their beer selection in the past year or so.
A lot of the beer is located near a north facing window, which has always bothered me a little. It has a screen on it however. Prices are not the best in town, but the selection is pretty solid. Service on the beer side of the store seems a little spotty.
This is also a good store for wine, they have a very extensive selection.
It is right off of 435, so it would be a quick stop for someone travelling through town.
11-13-2006 00:08:33 | More by homebrewhawk
3.85/5 rDev -6.3%
quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
Update: The widow problem as been largely fixed. The service has been hit or miss but I know they have at least on guy there that knows beer. The selection is better than Gomers but the Belgian section really hasnt "wowed" me lately but they have added a few better domestic craft beers. Some of the prices seem high. This still seems to be the beer store to beat in KC.
Old review from 05-23-05:
(Old scores: Quality: 4; Service: 3; Selection: 4.5)
Impressive most impressive. Better then Gomers on Holmes. Best beer store in Kansas City that Ive been too.
I was a bit worried when I pulled up on a busy Friday night. The large white building with gas pumps in front didnt exude the image of a place to buy good beer. Nor did all the Cardinal (baseball) fans leaving with Bud or Michelob Ultra I guess they couldnt cut the umbilical cord!
Once inside I noticed most of the store was devoted to wine and hard liquor. Once I found the beer, to the left and left-back coolers I was quite happy. But I didnt like the big windows exposing the beer to sunlight. At least the window is facing north. Still this is something they should look into
For American micros, Royal had a good selection from Bells, Berghoff, Rouge, a couple from Bridgeport, many from St. Louis Brewery, Boulevard, Goose Island, Great Divide, SA, SN, Anchor, Pony Express, Otter Creek and more.
Overall, the import section was good with a modest row devoted to English and German beer; I didnt pay much attention to these but I did notice many quality beers. The Belgians looked good though! They had offerings from Unibroue, Cantillon, Chouffe, Duvel, Orval, Rochefort, Dupont, Caracole, and many more. There was a couple Bière de Garde I had not seen before. I wish I had taken some notes because the selection was very good. There were at least a dozen Belgian/French beers that I had not even seen before plus there was another dozen or so I had not sampled.
How was the help you ask? Well they were busy when I was there. I didnt see any employee beer guy or anything so I cant really comment on the service. The checkout ladies were pleasant tough.
I will be back.
04-16-2006 14:33:38 | More by bditty187
4.45/5 rDev +8.3%
quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $$$
If I had written this review a year ago, it would not be as "glowing" as I will write today. The guy in charge of the beer is really taking initiative to get new stuff in these days. He has shown me his list of stuff he can get and I must say it's quite impressive. Royal's used to have basically all the same stuff Gomers had, but now the selection at Royals is better. The prices are definitely higher than Gomers though. I can easily find $.50-$2 per-six-pack price variations between the two stores. But, like I said, the selection is top-notch.
Along with all the standard craft brews from Bell's, Schlafly, Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's, Berghoff, Bridgeport, etc (you know the list), they have an amazing selection of single bottles (imports) unavailable elsewhere. Just as an example, where else can you get a bottle of Cantillon Broucsella (1900) Grand Cru?
I also have a gripe about the windows; WAY too much light gets into this place. I frequently avoid buying beers I really wanted simply because they sit on a display rack in direct sunlight. That's one good thing about Gomers: that place is a dungeon.
I fill gas here as much as I can just so I can browse for deals; it's common to find a clearence deal on some good stuff.
Edit: Ok, looks like they're slowly but surely fixing the window problem. Windows are mostly covered around the beer area, although not completely. I guess it would be hard logistically to completely fix it so this will have to suffice.
09-26-2005 17:20:56 | More by Gruntlumber
4.15/5 rDev +1%
quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Royal Liquors is, in my opinion, on equal footing with Gomer's when it comes to beer stores in Kansas City. While the selection might be a bit smaller (not to imply that it is small, because it is not), there are things there that I cannot get at Gomer's. For instance, I picked up four consecutive vintages of Lee's Harvest Ale at Royal. Plus, they have Lindeman's Cuvee Rene. That alone makes me stop by each time that I make a trip to KC.
As I stated, the selection is amazing. Don't be fooled by the weak cooler section. Go check out what they have on the shelves.
The employees were great each time I have been in. Some of the newbies have been a little inexperienced about all the brews, but they were excited about the world of beer and on the path to becomes true BAs.
It's just a short trip on I-435 from Holmes to State Line, so you might as well hit Royal the next time you visit Gomer's. I'm pretty sure that you will go back.
01-13-2005 00:35:44 | More by Quaffer
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Royal Liquors - Watt's Mill in Kansas City, MO
91 out of 100 based on 17 user ratings.