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Joe Canal's Discount Liqour Mart
$$ - reasonable
[ Store ]
3375 Route 1
phone: (609) 520-0008
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quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | $$
Since I'm subject to the antiquated liquor laws of Pennsylvania, I like to stop here at the local Joe Canal's whenever I'm visiting family in my hometown.
The prices are decent, and the "make your own 6-pack" is a great idea - if the beers available are things that appeal to you. Honestly, it's hit or miss here to me. I'm constantly disheartened by how many cases of Bud Light and Miller Chill I have to navigate through before I find 6-packs of things I actually want to come home with. Again, it's hit or miss. Sometimes I leave completely satisfied, and other times, I'm sorry I didn't just make the extra trip to the beer distributor in Philly. I feel like their selection is waning, and hopefully they'll start offering just as much to the craft beer crowd as they do to the Natty Ice crowd. You really have to spend some time combing the aisles to find the gems, in my experience.
I haven't lost all hope, as of yet. If nothing else, I know I can pick up a case of Guinness for a reasonable price if I don't find what I'm looking for.
01-27-2011 04:41:32 |
More by stephadelphia
quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
I've been visiting Joe Canal's in Lawrenceville pretty much every Friday over the last several months. What has attracted me is their Growler station which opened June/July 2010. The addition of 7 taps with weekly new selections has me visiting their web site to see what is next and checking beeradvocate reviews to make my selection. The personnel poring are always willing to talk beer and will often tell you if they know what is coming next.
The beer aisle for the store is tight and difficult to navigate (I've been spoiled growing up with Julio's in Westborough, MA). There appears to be a wide varity of bears on both the self and in the coolers. Unfortunately there is very little shelf signs and trying to find a meaning in how the individual bottles are arranged is difficult. I'd like to see a better representation of local brewing companies such as Flying Fish. I can hardly ever find Exit 4 (Tripel). Their shelf end caps need to be dressed more often. I asked a clerk to open a end cap box of Mad Elf which he did promptly and handed me the bottle. He failed cause he simply put the box back without cutting it open for display and went on to other work. The General Manager for the store is very response and hard working. I e-mailed him that the growler station web page was out of date and he had the problem fixed in 15 minutes. I'm hopeful that with the explosion in craft beers that Joe Canal's growler station is the first step in improving their beer presence in the area.
12-08-2010 15:15:34 |
More by TimHitchings
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Its a huge place filled with mostly liquor and wine. They have beer by the case or single bottle. Growler fills were also available here. I think there were 5 taps. Surprisingly found a bottle of Firestone Fourteen. Some mead was on shelves here, which I thought was interesting Prices were lower than what I am used to seeing. Even beers from Victory and Troegs were cheaper than in my home state. Lots of people available if you need help.. All bottles were neatly organized, label facing forward and all that. Definitely stopping here again next time I pass by.
08-27-2010 22:42:50 |
More by IdrinkGas
quality: 4 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Decided to stop by here during my stay in Princeton. It is a fairly large store that houses mostly wine and hard alcohol. The last aisle in the store was dedicated to craft beer as well as the cooler on the other side of the aisle. It had your standard import selection (heavier on the Belgians), nothing too exotic or anything I couldn't find on LI. I did purchase a Urthel that I haven't seen before. My main objective was to find beer that I can't get in NY and I was able to so. I picked up some loose bottles of Terrepin and some New Holland offerings. The rest of the American craft selection was your widely distributed crafts from the country or the Northeast. The did have several local brews that I have never heard of. The service was non-existant and by the size of the place, I'm sure that is always the case. The selection was good, not great. The imports can use some more English and German offerings. All in all I was happy I stopped in and got some brews that I can't get on LI.
06-26-2010 00:09:22 |
More by Gmann
quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | $$$
I go to this place every once in a while, as it's about 2 minutes from work. The beer selection is pretty decent, they have a good selection of american craft and european imports. When a new brewery makes it's way to NJ, Joe Canals has them pretty quickly. They limit their supply to the "main" beers from each brewery, so the super special releases you'll have to go elsewhere. The service is pretty bad, any question I've asked usually just gets answered with confused looks and not sures. Overall their prices are decent, not great...sometimes they'll clearance a selection of bottles. Overall this place is my fall back, I always hit up the Buy Rite on 130 first because the selection and prices are better and the staff is awesome and really helpful.
But whatever you do, STAY AWAY FROM THE SA TRIPLE BOCK, it's definitely oxidated and heat struck.
04-19-2010 16:48:17 |
More by BigIrishman
quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 4 | $$
This place has a MASSIVE selection of microbrews for such an out of the way location. It literally has about a 50-60 aisle stacked high with various beers.
On the downside, there's nothing too exotic. I picked up a DeuS, DFH Worldwide stout, and DFH Palo Santo among others. I was please to see an Ommegang BPA (which is somewhat rare). Otherwise, the selection is heavily skewed towards East Coast beers. One nice thing is that they often have signs in front of the beers giving the Ba and Ratebeer ratings. They don't do this for all of them, but it's a nice touch.
The staff is not all that knowledgeable about the beer either. Apparently, they don't know how often they get new shipments (prolly need to talk to the manager next time) or if they plan to stock up on seasonals. I was quite disappointed with the lack of knowledge, but even more so with their ridiculous store policy: No one under 21 is allowed in the store. In fact, if you check out with someone who's 20, they'll blacklist you for the day and refuse to take your order. The policy is inane and discourages business.
Overall, I'd rank the selection this way (out of 5):
Price: 3.5 (no amazing discounts, but affordable)
03-27-2010 17:00:29 |
More by BeerNemesis
quality: 4 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | $$
Before I was 21, I used to pass this place all the time, and I never really gave it a second thought. But since I live in PA, I get fed up with having to buy beer by the case at all of the state-run stores. So, I ventured out to Princeton and hit Joe Canal's.
The selection is pretty good. I was surprised and elated to see individual bottles - mixing and matching is the only way to shop. They have a good selection of DFH (I was there specifically for the WW Stout and 120 IPA), Sam Adams, Yards, etc. They also have roughly 80-100 beers from breweries I've never heard of. It will take me a good while before I exhaust the novelty of the selection.
Worth mentioning are the aisles and aisles of wine and liquor. It's no joke. Their wine/liquor selection is well in the 4.5-5 range.
I do have one issue - don't plan on checking out with anyone under 21 unless they are your kids. I picked up my brother (20 yrs old) from Rutgers one Friday and on the way back home I wanted to see if they had any DFH 120 left (I'm always on the lookout). We went in, grabbed the last two bottles, but they refused to sell to me, citing store policy. In their defense, there is a giant red sign near the entrance that says everyone in your "party" has to be 21, if they are not, then even the over-21 people get blacklisted for 24 hours. But really, the policy is obviously just for the sake of appearance because all you have to do is make the underage folks wait in the car. Actually, they can even go in with you as long as they don't check out with you. It's stupid, but whatever. Otherwise, service has been average. It may be different if you're looking for wine or liquor because that seems to be their forte.
Overall, good selection, better than buying by the case in PA. Customer service is average (not bad) but be weary of store policies that serve to realize superficial goals. Also, just because they have 10 bottles of DFH 120 in the fridge doesn't mean you can buy all of them, so wipe that grin off your face: it's a rationed item.
02-16-2010 14:04:17 |
More by joemeister
quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Joe Canal's is by far one of the best liquor stores around. They have an astonishing selection of wine, both domestic and international. As a resident of PA, this place is always cheaper and well worth the drive. Their hard liquor prices are very reasonable, but their sales are amazing. Great selection of microbrew. One of the first places to have Southern Tier Brewing, great selection of Avery, and Dogfish Head. They allow for the purchase of individual bottles which is great for people looking to sample before investing on a case. Their case prices are fantastic. They also have great prices on kegs. I always shop Canals before a party as they have lager for around $70 and miller lite for $63.
12-14-2009 03:52:01 |
More by DrKnoskelson
quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $
Well my wife and I went here on Saturday in some nasty snowy weather.When you first walk in you think damn am I in the right place? Wine and liquor all over the place. As we made our way around we came to the back of the store and there is the beer section. Alot of goodies in here. We picked up a bunch of Belgians Westmalle,Rochefort, etc.Sam Adams triple bock, Thomas hardy's ale. A few others. This stuff is very hard to find except down in Philadelphia. Which is a bit of a trip from our home.The prices were very cheap for those Belgians but for the others like Sierra Nevada ,Troegs , Founders it was pretty much the same as back home.
As for the service the staff seemed a little unfriendly. Constantly pushing you out of the way as they walk by with cases,ladders etc. None really helpful at all to be honest. I guess we just came at a bad time.
12-10-2009 00:24:51 |
More by TheFightfan1
quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $$
I've stopped in here a few times now over the past couple years, mainly when I have to head to Princeton for work. As another reviewer mentioned, they're pretty strict about carding so be warned. The beer section is in the back, with a meager selection of full cases and a good selection of 6 packs and singles. Many of the singles are in the coolers that line the back wall, along with packaged product including some mixed 12 packs. About half the singles are on shelves at room temp. Although the requisite BMC is present, the majority of the beer is US and imported craft. Recently I've picked up Stone (including special releases), Rock Art, Weyerbacher, Left Hand, and many other surprises. Their import selection is decent, with a few from the UK (I picked up some Meantime last visit) and a fair selection of Belgians (lots of Fantome). Service has always been decent, but not outstanding. I'll continue to hit this place when in the area.
09-06-2008 02:03:17 |
More by DrJay
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Joe Canal's Discount Liqour Mart in Lawrence Township, NJ