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Monument Wines & Spirits
$$ - reasonable
[ Store ]
2250 Monument Blvd
phone: (925) 682-1514
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Reviews by Arbitrator:
quality: 3.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
This was my go-to shop for a long time. When my girlfriend lived in San Ramon, I would make the drive up to Concord before heading back to the Peninsula. It was, without fail, worth it. There were many consecutive weekends where I dropped over a hundred at a time.
But that was the past....
After Steve (the previous beer buyer) left, the selection of the store dropped off a bit. Turnover suffered. The "hidden gems" -- beers that they pulled from their cellar and placed on the floor in a hide and seek fashion -- diminished in quantity and increased in price.
My favorite was finding Temptation 375mLs (batch 3) for $22 next to a Temptation 750mL (batch 4) for $21. Firestone XII for $60 when the XIII came out. The vintage pricing got, in a word, aggressive. Bottle limits on nearly everything of note.
I still see the Port 3rd Anniversary (a DIPA from Spring 09) sitting out on the floor, unrefrigerated, at its retail price. Cases of unrefrigerated AleSmith IPA on the floor. The Midnight Sun beers they managed to get are several months old, and expensive, so it's not an attractive proposition.
They have a ton of Ola Dubh, for reasons I can't figure out. Their glassware selection is limited.
With each trip I find fewer and fewer things to buy; the selection is rapidly dwindling in variety. I almost get the feeling they're trying to sell out what they have and get out of beer entirely.
This store used to be awesome. Now it's merely good.
12-27-2010 23:35:14 |
More by Arbitrator
More User Reviews:
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
This place is a mecca for craft beer fans. I loved the selection and will return every chance I get when I'm visiting family in CA. I was checking out with my awesome finds and just casually asked if they got in any sour in the rye (The Bruery) and the sales clerk said he thought there was one in the back and grabbed one for me to buy. Awesome place. Tons of CA beer and very impressive Mikkeler selection.
04-24-2013 06:44:11 |
More by BRZvice
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75 | $$
Just visited this place over christmas vacation. It is my second time going to this store and it did not dissapoint. I personally love the "beer maze" layout, as it provides a sense of adventure. The selection is uparralelled in the city, if not the county. Plenty of jolly pumpkin, RR, and other sours. Good selection of Alesmith's lineup that are hard in NorCal. All your other craft standards are represented well.
I have had great experiences with the staff. There has always been someone organizing, stocking etc. when I have been there that always asks if they can help me find something, they know thier store well. I think with the re-surgence of craft beer in the past year or two, they may have re-focused on this portion of thier store.
Value was good from what I could tell. I am not much of a high end beer buyer, but $14 for a 750 of speedway stout is fine with me. I dont have much use for a 3L of RR or Lukcy Bastard so really didnt even look at the prices.
I will continue to visit these guys every time I am in town.
02-03-2013 17:25:59 |
More by Bubbalito
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | $$
I can't imagine many stores with a greater selection. I frequent stores all over the U.S. and this one has one of the largest selections I've seen, outside of the original Sams in Chicago (now Binny's). While most places have bottles of very desireable and some rare things, this place has cases! Monument also has a nice selection of aged/older bottles (although can be pricey on these). This is a must stop if you're in the area. I drove about 10 miles to check it out and was very glad I did. Picked up several bottles, many of which I'd not seen elsewhere.
10-20-2011 00:43:31 |
More by GRG1313
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
Good sized liquor store, in between a Safeway and a Mexican food joint. Not divey. Walk in, and beer is the first thing you see, weird maze of beer, one of the aisles doesn't go through, its a dead end.
Quality is very good, picked up some Cascade Apricot, Stone Cherry Chocolate Stout/Green Tea ipa, Haandbic, temptation, sanctification, biere de mars, different vintages of Santa's Little Helper etc. . . saw Firestone XII for $55, passed. A bottle of Papier for $50, passed. Nice to see vintage bottles, but aside from the $2 markup on an old Santa's Helper, they were to much for me to justify, but that ain't a reason to hate, I like that simply as an option, so I'm cool with it.
All out of Pliny and Blind Pig, thankfully, I had just visited the brewery w/in the last 48 hours, so maybe I'm a little generous in the selection section. . . 4.25 lets say.
Service was just fine and dandy.
Will visit again if I'm in the area, would recommend, would say there isn't anything as good unless you're in Oakland/Berkeley.
08-16-2011 19:21:41 |
More by Beerandraiderfan
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
Finally made it to Monument (what a special occasion!)
The beer selection here is certainly one of the better ones in the Bay Area. Lots of the local stuff (Russian River is especially plentiful), and quite a bit of Southern California stuff, which doesn't seem to always make it up to the Bay Area. Lots of Midnight Sun and Mikkeller (blech), too.
On the regular stuff, the prices are pretty decent, I must say. $11 for Consecration and Temptation is at or below the usual price, for instance. Other stuff is a bit on the pricey side ($20+ for Hanssens Oude Gueuze?!). But nothing tops their vintage pricing. One batch back of Consecration is $15 instead of the usual $11. Batch 3 Temptation: $40, 2008 Angel's Share: $40, 2007 Utopia's: $500. You get the point.
Very minimal service (one older lady at the counter). And what interaction took place was not exactly the most friendly.
Plenty of good beer, but some sort of questionable practices and service.
07-18-2011 17:59:50 |
More by womencantsail
vibe: 3 | quality: 2 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
This was my go to place for a while. Not any more unfortunately. The last three times I have been I have left empty handed. Yesterday I think was the last time I will visit.
There were cases of 2010 DFH Festina Peche still for full sale at price, pretty much every bottle I picked up had a coating of dust but the icing on the cake was one of the fridges. Every bottle label was covered in mold in this one fridge. It was enough for me to say enough is enough. There are too many other options these days to worry about this place anymore, sad, but true.
The pricing for some of the vintage stuff also seems way over the top.
05-21-2011 00:04:54 |
More by rob133
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$
I went there last week to pick up some extras for my package. My first impression is that they do not organize their beers at all. Beers are everywhere on the floor without any systematic arangement. The store clerks do not have much idea about beers and suggested me to come back Thursday or Friday when the beer buyers there. However, they have really good selection of RR, even some old batch ( some of them have really premium price tag). They do not have a lot of limited release like Abacus. Overall, it is a good place to pick up regular release and hunt for some vintage if you are willing to pay the premium price ( like ~$300 for 3L of Supplication)
05-12-2011 04:33:30 |
More by futura123
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | $$
This place is for sure a diamond in the rough. I was very surprised and quite pleased with the selection of beers at this bottle shop - Thank you to a fellow BA for telling me about it. I actually liked it more when it was more disorganized. Funny to say but sometimes you would find a nice older beer on the shelves at a very reasonable price. They have taken the time to better organize their selection so everything is way easier to find right now. They carry all regulars plus a lot of sought after California beers. Great job to whomever takes care of the beer at this place!
05-06-2011 22:28:11 |
More by NorCalgrowler
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$$
Was first introduced to Monument by my wine and spirit's teacher who works at one of their sister stores. The first time I walked into monument I was floored by the amount of beer they had sprawled around the store. However after a further and sharper look at the store it is a lot of the same beers repeated all over the place. They do however have some nice things, always have the entire current lineup of RR stuff. They also used to do the hide and seek thing when the last beer buyer was there, those days are long gone unfortunately. I've always had a positive experience, but the atmosphere is nothing special. They do have a "rare" selection of some beers near the registers, but it's mostly extremely overpriced. For example. Batch 1 supplication in a 375ml is 50.00. A Firestone 13 is 149.99
Some of Monument's pricing is just really out of wack and I don't understand it, but it's their decision not mine. Overall Monument is a good bottle shop that is relatively close to me, and I can always depend on them for the RR lineup.
05-05-2011 02:18:14 |
More by dookiepower
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Monument Wines & Spirits in Concord, CA