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Abe's Cold Beer

Not Rated.
Abe's Cold BeerAbe's Cold Beer

79 Reviews
Reviews: 79
Visits: 98
Avg: 4.49
pDev: n/a
Taps: --
Bottles: 2,000
Cask: N
[ Eatery, Store ]

1301 W Broad St
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, 18018-4920
United States
phone: (610) 997-0831

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Place added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-15-2007

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Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 79 | Visits: 98
Reviews by 57md:
Photo of 57md
4.64/5  rDev +3.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

A: Outside, it looks like a place to go and pick up a 12 pack of Natty Bo or a 40 of Old E. Inside, it is craft beer heaven (though, oddly, you can also get nasty cheap beer there).

Q: Sometimes see old beer hanging around, but generally they keep up with the new releases.

S: Abe and his wife are very friendly. Also, you get a real sense of the tremendous charity work that Abe does for families in his native Africa.

S: Simply an unbelievable selection that rotates very regularly. You will not find a better variety of single bottles/six-packs anywhere in the Lehigh Valley.

F: n/a

V: Prices are reasonable, but become exceptionally so when you consider that the ability to purchase a single bottle of beer saves a ton of lost money on buying a case of beer that you find sub-par. I rarely purchase cases of anything without first stopping by Abe's to taste test the beer in question.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Brushkanna
3.81/5  rDev -15.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3 | selection: 4.25

MKy complaint is the bad 70's almost disco music one guy in there plays and his constant whistling to the terrible music, makes me want to leave. The beer selection is good. Prices are high, but i belive that is due to the weird PA beer laws.

 242 characters

Photo of Statu
4.23/5  rDev -5.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 1

Photo of JNForsyth
3.75/5  rDev -16.5%

Vast inventory of beer, not organized but a good way to browse an hour away. Pricing seems to trend on the high side for the area.

131 characters

Photo of notjaredsmith
5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of anteater
4/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of BigRizz62
4.96/5  rDev +10.5%

Photo of pep
5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of Afroman
5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of gl1800rider
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of TrackcoachLVPA
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of macesq
2.58/5  rDev -42.5%
vibe: 2 | quality: 2.5 | service: 2 | selection: 3.5

There are two arguments, I believe, that I hear most frequently regarding the value of supporting locally owned small businesses. The first, perhaps more quintessentially "liberal," centers on distribution of resources; a society with more independent owners distributes resources among a wider group of persons. The second, perhaps more quintessentially "conservative," centers on the value of localism as such; the local community is preferable to a larger society of unknowns and local business owners deserve money in a way out-of-town big businesses do not.

I'm nonplussed as to these two arguments, for reasons I need not concern you with. Frankly, I prefer smaller-scale establishments in the most selfish way -- what they have to offer me. In the abstract, the human touch of (for our purposes here) a small six-pack store provides benefits out of reach in the faceless retail outlet of big-box bureaucracy: attention to details with which only beer consumers concern themselves; friendly and personal service; a sense of passion in seller as well as buyer for the goods being transacted. These things, moreso than abstract structural concerns, make me inclined to pay a higher price for beer from a small business than from a large seller peddling six-packs within its echoing facade.

Abe's, the six-pack store of the locality of my youth, unfortunately offers few of the benefits for which I'm happily willing to pay a premium. To be sure, they offer a wide variety of beers; and although that advantage is dwindling in the Lehigh Valley market, they remain the only place to buy singles of great beers (the make-your own six-pack section at Wegman's remains sparsely populated with good brews) and do have a spread of six-packs only approached by the recently-renovated Allentown Wegman's. However, service is often surly and they attend to remarkably few details. Beers can be many months out of date; organization, layout, and general upkeep evince a general lack of respect for consumers; and they can't be bothered to shave off the price stickers on every bottle with a razor, a staple of dingy corner liquor stores and high-end wine boutiques, but lost on Abe's.

All of which would be no sweat off my back, frankly, even for a slight premium. The ability to make your own six-pack of top-tier brews really is worth that much to me, even if you need to check the born on date of every bottle you pick up. But Abe's isn't just a few dollars more than Wegman's, a fact which I could accept unblinkingly. Abe's is as expensive as beer stores in New York and Washington, D.C. Hell, I recently had a bottled beer at a craft beer *bar* in New York shortly before returning to the Valley to visit family; when I stopped in Abe's I saw they were selling it to-go for just a dollar less. That would border on unacceptable even if Abe's offered the benefits of a small business that cares about its goods and its consumers. That Abe's is run like a convenience store with a six-pack license that stumbled into the world of craft beer in a beer-starved Lehigh Valley market only makes this more ridiculous.

 3,113 characters

Photo of GeorgiaBeerGuy
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%

Photo of Latarnik
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of bshiban
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

excellent selection but $$$$

29 characters

Photo of NJBeer265
4.64/5  rDev +3.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Went here on the way to a bachelor party in the Pocono's and glad I did. The place doesn't look like much from the outside but huge selection inside, I could have spent hours in this place. Big Make-Your-Own 6-Pack section, big bomber section and a ton of International beers. Emma is amazing and if you e-mail ahead of time they will set aside large quantities if you are looking. Sign-up for the e-mail blasts.

 412 characters

Photo of yourefragile
4/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of Josh1981
5/5  rDev +11.4%

Photo of JohnnyPoops
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%

Photo of derek984
4.9/5  rDev +9.1%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

A great local place to find beers from all around the world, some very rare and hard to find. Sign up for their email blast to get up to date emails on some of the rare things they get. It can get disorganized from time to time, but they have thousands of bottles of inventory, ask if you are looking for something specific. They have a very nice and knowledgeable staff. You could shop at Wegmans which has a small selection or shop and support a local business with an even better selection!

 493 characters

Photo of NonicPanic
3.6/5  rDev -19.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of djrn2
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

Photo of Dawkins
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%

Photo of TTripp725
2.48/5  rDev -44.8%
vibe: 1.75 | quality: 2.5 | service: 1.75 | selection: 3.5

A decent selection of beers. Not of the greatest of places but with limited options to get craft beer six packs, I don't have much of an option. The arrangement of the store is very poor and has no reasoning. Its like they get the beer in stock and then just place in on the shelf so you have rows of beer three six pack deep and none of the six packs are the same, so it is very time consuming. When asked if they can obtain a certain been beer its like it's an inconvenience for them and they brush you off

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Abe's Cold Beer in Bethlehem, PA
98 out of 100 based on 79 ratings.