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Hi-Time Wine Cellars
$$ - reasonable
[ Store ]
250 Ogle Street
phone: (800) 331-3005
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Reviews by bradford:
quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I have read about the legendary Hi-Time Wine Cellar for some time here on BA, and now that I am working in Huntington Beach, I have had the pleasure of stopping in here a couple of times.
The quality is very good. Many hard to find craft beers from around the country and the world. I wish thay had some more Mid-West/East Coast beers, but they do have some. I have picked up many Stone, Hair of the Dog, and Pizza Port beers, as well as Victory and Avery.
The service here is great. When I stopped in last, I inquired about where a particular beer bar in Orange County was, the cashier didn't know exactly, so he googled it and offered to print me a mao of how to get there. Very freindly and knowledgeable service.
The selection is very good. Many hard to find and obscure beers available no where else in the US
The prices are reasonable as i suspect they have several distributors and a buying staff that goes out of their way to get the goodies. Highly recommended.
11-18-2007 22:05:48 |
More by bradford
More User Reviews:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | $$
I visited Hi-Time this weekend as I was visiting a friend in Huntington Beach. I'm glad I did. I'm not into wine, cigars, etc., but it seemed they had a very nice selection of those items.
Now to beers. Most beers are stored in coolers or in the walk-in portion of it. I thought the selection was 4.75 out of 5. Very strong selection of beers from the US and abroad. It's not a 5 because I still couldn't find the rarer stuff from the Midwest and East Coast that I've found at my go-to liquor store.
What I value a lot about Hi-Time is that they allow you to break 4/6 packs. This is a godsend, if you're not familiar with a beer and just want to try it out without committing to a bomber or 4/6 pack.
Nice place. Too bad it's not local to me. I will surely return when I'm in the area again which I believe will be Super Bowl Sunday. I'll stock up here before I go the party.
01-14-2013 06:06:31 |
More by mrcraft
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
As part of my tour of Orange County during this week's work travel, I dropped into Hi-Time, based on the Ba reviews. Again, I was not let down.
The big cooler has an incredible assortment of California beers, national crafts and a ton of imports.I was also very pleased with the service...whoever helped me (I didn't get his name) went above and beyond discussing distribution differences in CA versus GA, and also checked "the back" for any hidden goodies (Blind Pig, Pliny, etc.) that may have been stashed away.
Overall, great selection, service and quality...if I was local to Costa Mesa, this would be my main stop for good beer.
03-15-2012 02:38:59 |
More by ohtheguilt
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I was in CA for business last week (between LA and OC) and found this place via a BA search. The "world class" rating it currently has is certainly deserved. I will only focus on beer, but the range of spirits and wine look to be much more impressive than even the beer section.
After gawking a bit in the spirits section I made my way over to the beer section (annex). Upon entering I clearly saw the walk in cooler, but opted to chat up the guy at the register who was doing some tasks. I told him I was in from MA and would love to have him tour me around the cooler while recommending what I should get / can't get elsewhere. He was awesome and recommended some great stuff. After picking a few things from the main cooler he escorted me to the smaller/reserve cooler. Here I had my choice of 4 50/50 Eclipses, Pure Hoppiness and various other gems. For RR they only had Damnation and Redemption, but I can't fault them too much for that.
In the reserve cooler we bumped into another gentleman who worked there and he joined the conversation--talking about his favs from the Eclipses, Rayon Vert and the Bear Republic Berliner Weiss. He continued with me to check out, get ice and acquire a cooler as well as some shippers to help me prepare my beers for travel back to MA via Delta (checked baggage).
I wish I could remember the names of these guys as they were super helpful. No worry, I'll ask next time I'm there--which will be the next time I'm in SoCal. I hope soon!
01-11-2012 03:53:58 |
More by jraras
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I have been to this store many times it is close to home and has a good selection. The store is clean and the the walk in beer fridge is a cool feature, but bring a jacket if you want to look at beer for more than a minute or two. The selection is pretty good but you have to ask for anything that you really want it is all kept in the back and if you don't know someone there or ask for it you want get it. I know Alex and he knows his beer and makes great recommendations. If you are close it is defininatly worth stopping in just make sure to ask if you don't see something you want.
11-19-2011 05:28:46 |
More by jefftheduke
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
What the previous reviewers have said is certainly true, this is indeed a candy shop for liquor lovers. And if all of this giant space was dedicated to beer, it'd be the Disneyland of craft brews as well.
Alas, we have to make do with a large cooler where the beer is properly stored (except it is a little bright in there). Prices are reasonable. The staff are generally pretty cool - another nice thing about this place is you can call in for a high-demand beer and they'll hold it for you for up to a day.
For those of us who like to slum in the fine spirits section get the full benefit of Hi-Times large space and huge inventory. I'm always amazed at the variety of rare and imported tequilas, rums and whiskies. Just wish it was a little closer to my home.
08-11-2011 10:02:45 |
More by Vanlingleipa
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
The term 'kid in a candy store' comes to mind when I think of Hi-Time because that's how I feel while I'm there. I usually stop by on Fridays after work to stock up on beer and wine. Their selection is ridiculous for beer, wine, cheese, cigars... I also get most of my kegs from them, they'll order it if they don't have it. I haven't done ant tastings here but they have a cool tasting room on the lower floor. Even if you go here for beer only you should walk through the wine cellar because it's amazing. Almost like a public library filled with wine. The walk in beer fridge is awesome. If you are in the Newport / Costa Mesa area go on in and get lost for a bit.
08-11-2011 03:45:45 |
More by OCBeerBaron
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I think I just died...and went to beer heaven. Hi-Time Wine Cellars is a must visit for beer lovers. When you first walk in the stores you're greeted by a cigar humidor on the left and a huge selection of wines and spirits. You can hear the buzz coming from their bar downstairs. In many ways Hi-Time is like a warehouse of alcohol with everything from mixers to wine to beer to bar supplies.
We then made out way to the beer section and into the beer cooler...wow. It was nice to see all the beers stored correctly and such a wide selection. Their prices are more than reasonable (I was at BevMo yesterday and saw the same beers at Hi-Time for a couple of dollars less).
The guys there were all really friendly and helpful. I asked one of them about Pliny the Elder as I've been on a hunt to get my hand on it and the happily started up a conversation give me advice on when they usually get in their shipments. All in all this place is a must visit if you are anywhere near orange county. I left like a kid that just got a new toy...really excited and thoroughly pleased with my box of goodies.
07-22-2011 04:50:32 |
More by blincoln
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | $$
Hi-Time is the best bottle shop I know of. Even though beer is only a small part of what they do (they're beer section only takes up about 20% of their store), they do beer better than any other place I've ever been. They sometimes hold beer-tasting events; while I've never been to one of these official events, I have been in the store a couple times where their beer staff have been sampling brews and have allowed me to participate and add my input. They are always among the first to get good, highly-anticipated seasonal or special releases. They do a good job of rationing limited-availability brews, too, so as to prevent hoarding. Their selection is extremely extensive, yet they do not seem to overcharge to compensate. I'm very lucky to have Hi-Time as my local bottle shop--even though I have to drive past BevMo to get there, I prefer to buy my beer at Hi-Time as much as possible.
07-19-2011 16:07:52 |
More by PhiloPsych
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
Hi-Time has been around FOREVER and is arguably one of the best retailers in the entire state of California ... and not just for craft beer, but for wine, cigars and spirits. It's like being in an adult candy store ... just EPIC!!
The beer selection is amazing and selections are properly stored ... cold ... so make sure when you browse the beer choices, bring a jacket or something as it gets cold.
Prices are reasonable ... probably lower in other establishments, but nothing over retail suggested value.
If you are in the area, Hi-Time is a must stop ... the store is simply amazing!
07-18-2011 19:13:09 |
More by AlexM
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Hi-Time Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, CA