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$$ - reasonable
[ Store ]
338 College St
phone: (413) 253-5384
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Ratings & Reviews
| Reviews: 35 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Hit this place for the first time tonight, even though it is only a little over a half hour from my home. Spent more here than anywhere else I've been to buy beer. Ever. No big deal? Remember, I'm half Scot.
Almost looks like it had been dropped by a tornado which originated in Germany. Redwoody exterior with rough wooden doors. Wine to the left, spirits to the right, beer in the middle and in wooden-framed coolers in back. Nice to see beer so prominent in a liquor store.
Big features here are sixpacks and some twelvepacks of just about everything New England craft brewers have to offer, as well as an exceptional selection of the usual national suspects. Lots of racks and shelves of bombers and 750s, with sixpacks on the lower shelves and stacked on cases on the floor. The biggest array of sixpacks I've seen in Western Mass. outside of Table & Vine.
No help offered during my twenty minute self-guided tour, but none needed. I mixed a sixpack and grabbed big uns of BP Sculpin, Stone Double Bastard and Maine Lunch.
Probably the best beer stop on Route 9 east of Dalton and west of Westborough, with the possible exception of Northampton's Provisions for bomber/750 buyers.
UPDATE 12/17/13: Have been back here a half dozen times since my review and always found something good. Most recently this was the only store in my area that I know of - and I visit most of them at least once every two weeks - that had two of the three new brews I was looking for, plus. One I had been hoping would show up for a month and I knew from a friend was plentiful outside my area. The other is hugely anticipated and highly sought after in its three main incarnations, and the Spirit Haus was the only place that had all three of them, and at the lowest price as well! So it's becoming my go-to store when I want to find something new and popular, something I suspect may never reach the shelves and coolers at all in most other stores closer to me. Raising my ratings accordingly.
07-18-2013 04:11:18 |
More by scotorum
quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5
A definite gem in the Westyern part of the state. Interesting coolers for a wide variety of brews. Wooden doors with windows...very appropriate. Unbelievable selection of brews....Belgians...English...Imports....They told em if they didnt't have it they could order it...very helpful staff. Even had a locked cabinet that included Thos Hardy 1995. Sold most offerings by single bottle if so desired. Prices were very reasonable. Easy to spend a good amount of time just browsing. A definite must stop if you are in the area.
04-19-2004 03:42:42 |
More by edchicma
quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5
One of 3 excellent beer stops in the Amherst/Northampton area. Not as large as Northampton's Table & Vine but may have as extensive an overall selection. Floor displays emphasize craft brews and some crafts are on sale each week - look for the list posted near the cooler door. It's impossible for a craft beer fan to come here and not leave with something. Seem to particularly specialize in such relative locals as Paper City and Wachusett. One of the few places where I've found the products of another local, Hylands of Sturbridge, MA. I think the local craft turnover is quite good but am not so sure about the imports as that selection is substantial and some items are undoubtedly slower moving. Personnel whom I've talked with were both knowledgeable and friendly. It's easy to drive past without noticing the store but that would be a mistake. Look for it if you're in the area.
05-07-2003 16:06:02 |
More by Greenlabel
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | $$
The selection here is fantastic. There are a lot of good craft and import options, including some of the rarities. Only Table and Vine trumps this selection, and even then the Spirit Haus gets a few things that T&V won't. The store could definitely be better organized, however. The beer section is a bit helter-skelter. Service is average. The employees are friendly and will ask you if you need assistance, but don't expect them to know too much about the beer. Prices are reasonable. I've seen things priced cheaply, but then I've also seen things that were a bit above the norm. As far as quality goes, I have a few gripes. IPAs and hoppy beers tend to sit on the shelves, and then when they get too old/go out of season, they are offered at a sale price. This is fine, and a great way to ensure product turnover, but only as long as the customer knows what he or she is getting. This isn't my real issue though. Maybe I'm being a bit too much of a stickler here, but I was a bit disconcerted to see that they lay down some of their Belgian ales like one would treat a bottle of wine. This is not the preferred method for storing beer (although I am aware of a few Belgian breweries that recommend it), and it can have an impact long-term. I didn't complain because when I was in the store there were only a few college age kids working and they had little to no knowledge of the beer. You can bet I will mention it to management if I ever see them. Despite this quibble, this is still a great place and I stop in here occasionally when I am in Amherst.
09-20-2010 19:07:04 |
More by ryan1788a5
quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5
I had been here many years ago, so I couldn't wait to get back. Had to make a special trip, but it was worth it.
Te sheer number of varieties, vintages, etc. makes this by far the most varied store I have ever been to. Also the most dedicated to beer. Rather cramped though.
I went there hunting for Chaotic Chemistry, and was not disappointed. Also, I spent some time talking to an employee, and he suggested a couple of Weyerbacher brews, the Insanity and Heresy. I took his advice and got them... and was VERY glad I did. These were two perfect beers, in my estimation. (Have not had the Chaotic Chemistry yet... have to wait for a special occasion to have a $20 bottle of beer.)
The only downside was that they overcharged me. Rather than scan the Insanity and then the Heresy, the cashier scanned the Insanity twice, overcharging me $1.70. I didn't notice this until I got home, so I emailed them. They offered to refund the money, and I am satisfied.
If you can get there, GO. Don't even think twice. Just have plenty of money and a list of what you've had.
04-01-2005 16:19:36 |
More by connecticutpoet
quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Conveniently located just a bit east of Amherst Center on Route 9. Silly Swiss-alps chalet style building with BMC, etc. neon lights in the windows.
Walk in and notice that this is a beer store. They sell wine and hard alcohol as well, but the focus is clearly on beer. There are two aisles of beer and a whole floor area with stacked cases and six-packs. In the back, there are unlit coolers with nice wooden-framed doors, where the local growlers and bombers, and other of the more popular beers are kept.
The couple of times I've been to this store, I've gotten a "kid in a candy shop" feeling. Up front there are some of the 'beers of the moment', I guess popular beers or staff picks. This time it was Great Divide Titan and Hercules. Guess they ran out of Old Ruffian, which they had up there last time. One side of the shelves are lined with bombers and 6-packs and 4-packs of many of the best microbreweries in the U.S, including all the local and regional ones. The other side is the 'import' side with many English and German beers. There is also a wine rack and a shelf full of Belgian beers. This is a very good selection. You are bound to find something good. They also have several local mixed 12-packs, which I like because they are a good deal at $10-$14.
The service is usually non-existent, and I agree with my other beeradvocates they hypothesize that this is because most of the clientele is clueless college students looking to get wasted. Also, I think this place should put price tags on their products. Is this just a personal pet-peeve or do other people appreciate this too? 6-packs especially at this store go un-marked, so I don't know if I'm looking at a $6 pack or a $10 pack. I also think this store should have a discount for mixed packs, I'd like that. That way I could try more of what they have without having to pay the price for singles; this would help mitigate the "I want to drink EVERY beer" effect I get going into this store.
Despite these drawbacks, this is a very good store. Easily the best beer selection in Amherst, but I don't know how it stacks up to stores in Northampton and Springfield.
02-17-2006 22:14:15 |
More by akahn
quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5
Probably around 500 beer bottles indeed in the half of the store that consists of beer. Its a bit messy, very small, looking like a rather large wood shack from the outside. They had rare stuff like saison dépeautre, the 2 étienne dupont. de ranke père noël 2001 in jeroboam which I couldnt resist buying, christoffel blonde, beersel gueuze and kriek are still there, probably 7-8 cantillon, but unfortunately there were no hanssens, still a few hardys vintages etc. Indeed some dusty bottles, but its a good place to buy big tough beers. I unfortunately didnt really find the rarest local brews I was looking for (watch city, cadillac stout, ipswich porter..). Great store still, I like the experience as a whole to have the feeling you may find hidden treasures at the rear of the shelves or in that big fridge where bottles are a bit mixed up. To me more interesting than a clean store where everything is predictable. I didnt ask for help, but was a bit disappointed by the cashier who went with a &quo;You guys are killing me&quo; when me and Martin crossed his cash buying somewhere above 200$ of singles. One of the rare place to find newport storms I assume (02 and 03), a lot of rare shelton beers.
10-12-2004 16:48:23 |
More by Rastacouere
quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | $$
The Spirit Haus is always a good place to find good beers at reasonable prices. They always have a great selection and the people are knowledgeable and friendly.
Today, my wife and I went there in search of Sierra Nevada Harvest and Southern Tier Creme Brulee. No Brulee, but they had several cases of the SNH. Not only were they really helpful, but they gave me a discount off the case. I was quite happy to find Harpoon Leviathan there as well.
I know that we will continue to go to the Spirit Haus - it's like being a kid in a candy store. I highly recommend them.
10-14-2008 00:50:37 |
More by eLMsITYbUM
quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
Since I went to school in Amherst at UMass, I am very familiar with this place and visited it regularly when I was a student.
I feel that Spirit Haus takes their beers seriously, and this is shown by their selection of "hard to find beers." (Great selection of Belgians) Lots of single 12 oz bottles, bombers, and GREAT service.
The owner seems to be a little rough around the edges, but surely knows his beer.
Great beer stop in Western MA, stop in if you are checking out the moan and dove.
01-06-2008 01:57:33 |
More by DavidSeanNJ
quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | $$
A very well stocked store for a college town. Ample selection of both american brews, and imports. Almost all the singles (except for some local bombers) are out on shelves. Most of the 6 packs can be found in the coolers, as well as out cold. They do let you mix 6'ers, something that isn't publicized anywhere. Cost me about 1.40 for each from Otter Creek, Opa Opa, etc, and 2.50 for a Bigfoot 2007. A little under 10 bucks for the 6 which wasn't too bad. Service was mostly non-existent, but they did answer my questions about pricing. The coolers are neat, look like old fashioned ice lockers with glass fronts.
04-26-2007 23:12:28 |
More by mountdew1
Spirit Haus in Amherst, MA
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