Wades Wines

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

34 Ratings
Ratings: 34
Reviews: 29
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: n/a
[ Store ]

30961 Agoura Rd
Ste 321
Westlake Village, California, 91361-5686
United States
phone: (818) 597-9463

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: Willinator on 07-29-2008)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 34 | Reviews: 29 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of indianabeerman
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%

awesome tap selection and a ton of bottles

Photo of AleHunter805
4/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of BigJohnShow
3.5/5  rDev -20.3%

Photo of EB1
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of GlassHound
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of DaveAnderson
4.69/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75

With family in nearby Woodland Hills, I always plan to go to Wades Wines when visiting, but never seem to fit it in. Big mistake. I will not be skipping it again.

Like everyone else, I thought the address was wrong when I arrived. There are no signs of this place at the street, and I had to consult the directory to figure out which suite it was in (all the way in back, FWIW).

I chatted with the owner, and he told me a bit of history of the place. Apparently, it was originally a wine store, but expanded to include spirits (700+ kinds of whiskey!) and beer, then again to add a tasting/tap room, and a third time to add a brewery.

Anyway, the beer. It's a smallish overall inventory, but had a ton of hard-to-find beers. I don't recall seeing a single macro or "crafty" label. In short, It was the kind of selection I would put together if I only cared about attracting craft beer enthusiasts.

Photo of werdnacross
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of ScottieD
4.18/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.5

I love Wades Wines. My go-to place when I visit my in-laws. Great selection. Very nice bar area with knowledgeable staff. I like that I can make flights of what I want to taste and find they have some great stuff on draft. Even better is the bottle room. Good selection including some great stuff from hard to find Hair of the Dog and the occasional Russian River. Really great place to go in the Thousand Oaks area..

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.86/5  rDev -12.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

I wanted to check out Wades since I was in the area anyways. It's a bit of an odd location in that it is a suite within a business park and not a standalone location. Inside it is a bit of a warehouse atmosphere with wine, liquor, and beer. All of the beer is located in the back of the store with some in coolers and some on the shelf. They had a lot of different stuff for sale and the selection is pretty great. Service was average with a hello when I walked in and a "let us know if you have any questions" demeanor. Their prices seemed a bit high compared to other places in SoCal. Overall, a pretty good place to check out but be prepared to spend a bit more than you would like.

Photo of kojevergas
3.56/5  rDev -18.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Today I consulted Wades' website and found their beer list. I was really excited when I saw they had six Mikkeller in stock I'd never had (Mikkeller is me favourite brewery), as well as some Lost Abbey, Allagash, and Alesmith I hadn't tried.

I drove there from Los Angeles (an hour and a half drive - on a GOOD Sunday).

When I arrived, there was ample parking. The seemingly abandoned strip mall in which it's located is a strong contrast to the flurry of activity I encountered once inside. The crowd is mostly wine fanatics (some annoying, some tolerable).

Sadly, I discovered none of the Mikkeller listed on their website were stocked; this would be excusable if they were merely out of stock and I was too late, but alas, it's their error: they just didn't update their website. Moreover, only common Lost Abbey/Alesmith/Allagash was available; also victims of the bad website maitenance. I can't complain too much because I ought to have called ahead, but it was a big disappointment.

Also problematic is the store's lack of baskets or carts. I had to pull a bottle per hand, manoevre past the (long) line, set them on the counter, and return constantly. There's no excuse for this, and feasibly rarer beers could be snatched from your counter pool while you're not looking. This is a terrible system that they need to change.

There was a nice looking area for tastings off to the side; it looked really cozy but I didn't have the opportunity to venture in as I was driving.

Pricing was pretty high compared to my local LA store (Wally's Wine in Westwood), but compared to my Denver store, California beers were priced pretty low.

When I went they were hugely understaffed, resulting in a long line, but the service I got when at the counter was great. The clerk wasn't the "beer guy", but was very friendly and tried to be as helpful as he could. I spared them a snide remark about carts and baskets because I'm sure they get that all the time.

Overall, while the store strikes me as more of a place for posh housewives to throw down $200 for one bottle of wine on their way back from Whole Foods, it has admittedly good selection - even if they're terrible about keeping their website updated. I might return, but I'll call ahead next time to make sure the beer I want is stocked.

B

Photo of dbmernin83
4.15/5  rDev -5.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Wades sits in the back of a small commercial complex, and doesn't look like much from the outside, but things change immediately the door is opened. The decor is warehouse chic with wood being the predominant feature. I got a mini tour right after walking in the door. Nice bar area with 41 taps, wine on tap, tables and a surprisingly long bar for just a "bottle shop".
Wine definitely dominates, with an extensive liquor selection taking a close second, followed by beer. I will admit, at first glance I was disappointed in the size of the beer area. Their selection, however, has no filler, like the majority of shops out there. A good mix of great new breweries and specialities. I found more bottles I'd never tried than most stores with larger selections. The whole beer room is at cellar temperature. I didn't have time to sit down at the bar, that'll have to be for another time, because I'll be back. It's a shame it's 40 minutes from my house.

Photo of mrbubbler
4.14/5  rDev -5.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Wades wines is a little gem in thousand oaks. They have a huge variety of great beers. They also have a huge tasting bar now which has a lot of great beer on draft. Service has always been very friendly though knowledge about beers is only a little above average. Some of the negative things about this store is i have frequently purchased old IPA's. Maybe i have bad luck but when it keeps happening it gets quite annoying. They do get in a lot of limited release beers which is a major plus! Though you will be paying a couple more dollars a bottle. The prices at this place is what really stops me from shopping here more often. This is a great store in an area that does not offer much to the beer community.

Photo of Wreckoncile
4.86/5  rDev +10.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Wades is among the best bottle shops in the Northern L.A./Ventura County area. As the name indicates, its wine selection is its famous boast, but their selection of beer and spirits is as worthy of praise.

One recent important note, they've redesigned their tasting room into a bar for all intents and purposes. They now feature 32 quality craft beers on tap that can be had in 5 oz tasting pours or by the pint, in addition to a bottle list that will pleasure the palatte of any BA looking for a prime example of any style under the sun. They also have 32 wines on tap in the same room, so feel free to bring your girlfriends and wives without having to worry about finding them a beer they like.

The staff is friendly. The beer guy is knowledgeable and helpful and will gladly let you know if they have something stored in the back. They all have a good sense of humor and seem to generally enjoy what they do.

As has been said, the selection, though solid in terms of quality, is limited in terms of quantity. They have limited shelf space for beer, as it appears the damnb winos take up too much. But they'll have some of the best quality brews that can be had in this market in stock on a regular basis. Tastings every thursday, but with the new bar opened, you can taste any day of the week.

Photo of artdob
4.65/5  rDev +5.9%

This is a fantastic store - not for just beer but also wine and spirits. Over 500 whiskeys and a healthy beer selection. Great store for finding quality beverages off the beaten path. Limited mainstream product selection but fantastic pickings in the experimental and upper end arenas.

Beer tastings on occasional Thursday afternoons - about twice monthly. Wine tastings every Friday and Saturday afternoons (check store for times).

Can be a bit hard to find as it's in a semi-industrial area. All the way down the driveway facing the freeway. Took me awhile to find the place but glad I did. Almost a weekly venture.

Photo of Hojaminbag
3.85/5  rDev -12.3%

Wades Wines is an interesting little place.

As others have said, this place is nearly impossible to find. Without being very familiar with the area, or having a GPS (which I did, and it was still confusing) it will be a battle. When you do get there, it is absolutely packed with a wide array of all sorts of alcohol. Beer is the smallest selection.

The selection is very small, featuring some good imports, a lot of CA beer, and a few others. The selection is obviously carefully chosen, focusing on quality of quantity. I picked up some Kern River brews, including Just Outstanding IPA, Speedway stuff including the stout, Midnight Sun Including Treat, and Alpine Nelson and Duet. Overall I took 12 bombers out of here for a total cost of 100.02.

One thing that I really liked is that all of the hoppy beers are refridgerated. Also, the Just Outstanding IPA had a one bottler per person limit.

Service here was very strange. Not bad, attentive actually, but just weird. I walked in and one of the old guys working made an awkward joke before directing us to the beer. The second older gentleman came and asked if we needed help. I replied that I could use a basket or cart and he said "I'm a human cart, just hand things to me." This led to him making a few trips to the front of the store. When not walking to the front of the store, he stood as close to me as possible, just watching me.

When I asked about Russian River stuff, specifically sours, things got even more confusing. He said they might have something, but they might not. He said to name a few and he would tell me. I named every single beer Russian River bottles, and he just gave me strange looks and said maybe, but probably not. I get the feeling there is a stash in the back of this store with the rarer bottles that they hide from the general public. Whether this guy wanted me to bribe him, or if this stuff is just for locals, or if this guy is just plain strange, I have no idea. It was a little bit off-putting though. (I should mention that the store's "beer guy" was not there on this day).

Overall, after my research and traveling, this is a good place to go when you're west of the city because it is the best option. I would not go out of my way to check this place out unless you consider the service to have entertainment value, which you might.

Photo of great7dividers
3.85/5  rDev -12.3%

I've been to Wade's quite frequently in the last year or so, and have found that they have an exceptional selection. This is definitely the spot to find some of the more obscure beers and some of the tougher to find selections that the bigger stores just don't bother to stock.

While this is primarily a wine store, they have a growing beer selection. It includes some of the finer domestic brews, in particular Russian River's beers, which can be rather difficult to find (to put this in context, Russian River will not sell to larger stores like Bevmo, in order to preserve the uniqueness and specialty that goes in to each of their bottles). To compliment this further, their imported selection is varied and plentiful. I've found beers that were virtually impossible to locate before. Like the Nogne beers from Norway, a vast array of the lesser known belgian brews or the Primator brand from the Czech Republic (although as recently as a few months ago Bevmo just began stocking Primator).

Wade's staff tries to be helpful, and for the most part they are. It may be the result of obscurity in my inquiries, but they seemed to have a more challenging time actually procuring beers upon request than originally portrayed.

But overall, the selection makes wade's totally worth it. It can be a little pricey to purchase beers here, but I guarantee you, you won't a better selection of good brands (like Dogfish Head or Castlemaine) in Southern California.

Photo of TeamUgly
4.15/5  rDev -5.5%

Ale inventory recently relocated. Good prices on booze and beer, I don't about the wine pricing. Take the time to ask about special requests that you don't see. Some of the prime items are stashed away and limited 1 or 2 per customer. The younger sales people are more in tune. Beer tastings are normally on Thursday afternoons - evenings, call ahead for dates and times. Ladyface Brewing is just a few miles away. Check out their Wades website for available products and call to confirm, since it not updated quickly or often.

Photo of Retsinis
4.56/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Update: 06/27/2011

Had not stopped into Wades for a few months, and a LOT has changed. Since they were able to fully take over the spot next door as well now, the tasting room has expanded (will come back to this), allowing a very nice remodel of the interior organization of the store, the checkout counter, and bathrooms, complete with Dyson Hand dryers! The whiskey section now seems larger and more prominent up front, and the beer selection is slightly larger as well, though not much if you have been here in the last 4 months. They have always had a very strong selection of wines not seen at most bottle shops, and that just seems even more well organized now then before.

Now, back to the tasting room. It is, quite frankly, nicer than most bars I frequent! From old style grape presses, the tops of wood wine boxes, and full wine barrels now part of the walls, and decor. The tasting room bar also offers 5 oz tasters of beer, and some beers up to 10oz, and 16 oz glasses! 28 Taps, which will be rotated as well now too. While I was there I had Midnight sun Mayhem, Great Divide Rumble, and Alesmith speedway stout, on draft. My wife had a Bruery Rugbrod, but they also had a kegs from Ladyface (just down the road of course) and they said they hope to have kegs from other local breweries as well, (Enegren in Moorpark once open as an example) All in all, I was a little blown away by all that has been done since the last time I was there, an observation I gleefully shared with all of the very helpful staff. I see more of my money being spent here in my future.

Original review

Wades is a great bottle shop in Westlake. As their name suggests, they mainly cater to wine, or I should say, they "use" to mainly cater to wine. Now, whether it is wine, spirits, or beer, there are few better selections a shop could have. Since my preference is beer, I would say their beer bottle selection is very solid, consistent, and the kind of place to check into now and then for rare gems, seasonals, and one-offs, but it is also improving over time too it seems.

They generally have a policy of a bottle limit of the one time, once a year, or very rare bottles, which is a plus as it can give you the chance to get a bottle to more customers.

Recently they expanded the store, and at least to me, it seems the beer selection got bigger! Granted it's now in the back, and just one long aisle, but I don't mind, considering that keeps them cool, and away from any light. (hough that was NOT an issue before by any means) They also added a few more fridges in the new area it seems, also a plus.

Their prices are fair & reasonable, though not always the cheapest on things you may find elsewhere. However, please keep in mind money spent here supports a local business, and local jobs, as opposed to a large corporate chain. If that means nothing to you, then I would say I have always had exceptional, personal service at Wades, and you are acknowledged the moment you walk in the door, so that is also worth a bit more too, as great service these days is not nearly as common as it use to be.

If you have not been to wades before, it is a must stop in the area. If you live in the area, you should be a regular, if your not, well, go remedy that!

Photo of jlt6116
4.65/5  rDev +5.9%

Went to LA for a wedding and asked the BA's about good bottle shops near Thousand Oaks. Wade's was mentioned several times. It's a funky industrial area, hard to see from the street (I drove by twice!!), but once inside. WOW. 400+ bottle selection. It's well organized, some bottle shops are not. They keep a few things in the back, due to excessive demand. Todd, the beer dude, was very helpful. Found a few gems, including 2008 Angels Share and Speedway Stout. I picked up a few things to try, mostly from breweries I'd never heard of, so those should be interesting.

A return trip to SoCal may be necessary...

Photo of cambria
3.1/5  rDev -29.4%

Good selection but I hate to say I've never had good service here. I've been here multiple times (and with company that's bought a good amount of stuff) but we're feeling less inclined to go back because every time we go it feels like we're not good enough to be there. Ouch.

I mean at one point I just flat out called the guys out on it. I can deal with 'tude, but not when I'm a customer giving you my bucks...

We opted in for a wine tasting that was starting last time we were there and the guy running it not only ignored us each time the next pour was served, he also ignored any questions we had. I'm not sure how that method will help a business or customer base expand.

It's good to see the nice selection out in Agoura, but I'd hit up green jug or elsewhere instead.

Photo of barrelroller
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Sometimes you don't know how good you have it until you travel or go to a new place because someone recommended it. This is THE place if you love beer and geographically close. Selection is huge, prices are great, staff is educated, and they get new stuff all the time. As a beer geek I'm always looking for something I have not tried before and Wade's is constantly bringing new items in. Beer tastings every other Thur. for 5$ is awesome to. Good way to try beers before the investment happens. Side note if you like pretty much any adult beverage this is a 1 stop shop, massive wines, insane single malt collection, and everything else in between. I have not been to Bevmo in 2 years...thanks Wades's!

Photo of GRG1313
4.65/5  rDev +5.9%

A real sleeper. This place is worth a drive. Looks very small but has a great selection of beers from all over. Very common to some that I've seen no where else. Shelves are crammed with beer from the small esoteric producer to the larger but hard to get item.

Prices are extremely fair and reasonable. In fact, some of the prices are downright cheap.

Service is excellent and the "beer guys" are very knowledgable. The selection is deceivingly large and you are sure to find hard to get items and some older items sitting on a shelf that you've not seen anywhere else for a long time.

Worth the trip.

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.65/5  rDev +5.9%

Basically a wine store, with about 1/4 space dedicated to beers. All beers are solid choices. Very helpful beer guy, didn't catch his name. But he helped me to find the newest and rarest choices. Some hard to find beers from Hair of the Dog, Alpine, RR, and others. Also all the standard kick-ass selections that west coast BA's take for granted. Great prices and insane selection, including rarities (like Fred from the Wood - $12.99 on my visit).

It was a little hard to find, at the back side of an industrial park, you'd never guess there was a wine store back there.

Too bad it's so far north, it was convenient for me only due to a rare trip to the Ventura area.

Photo of tjensen3618
4.85/5  rDev +10.5%

This is the best store that i have been to in the N. LA/Ventura County area. It's in the back of a industiral complex overlooking the 101 fwy, the lack of a swanky location probably helps contribute to the fact that 1- the place is huge, and 2- the prices are pretty low.

This has been my go-to bottle shop for a couple years now and it never fails to have a few new beers in stock. The staff is great and the beer guy knows his stuff. They have a little tasting room and do beer tastings every other Thurs. If your into Spirits or Wine I'm sure they have just about anything you'd want.

If your in the area, or even if you have to drive a little ways, this is a destination for any beer geek, especially for us somewhat deprived Ventura County guys.

Photo of TheJollyHop
4.4/5  rDev +0.2%

While definitely out of the way, and semi-hidden, once found it is well worth the travel. Everything is kept in very good cellar conditions, and there is a nice variety of both limited release and widely distributed beers.

Prices are also competitive, as I was able to find a fair amount of beers at a less expensive price than I have seen anywhere else. Also the staff is friendly, however I can't vouch for their beer knowledge.

Overall, while Wades is somewhat of a chore to find it is well worth a visit. I know I will make a trip back there soon.

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Wades Wines in Westlake Village, CA
96 out of 100 based on 34 ratings.