Taps: 25 / Bottles: 800
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings: 69 | Reviews: 58 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by Soonami:
4.58/5 rDev +3.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
This review is for the take-out Beer Garden only, although you can get any beer or food from the restaurant for you delivered to the take-out side. If you haven't been, the Beer garden entrance is on the west side of the building, through a glass sliding door. If you walk in and find the walls decorated with empties of Narke Kaggen Stormaktsporter, Westy 12, Splinters, Dark Lord, and every DFH you can think of, you're in the right place. Behind the register is a large shelf of beer not for sale, but for trading and sharing.
Pinocchio's is my go-to beer store. It's about 15 minutes from my house, which is fair drive but worth it. They have somewhere between 500 to 1000 beers on the shelves at any given time and most of their beer is stored cold in the fridges, which I really appreciate. The store is very clean and well organized. The seasonal beers are in the first fridge, the locals in the next, then American craft by brewer names arraged approximately alphabetically. Then the beers from elsewhere and the bombers. The Belgians are on a separate wall and gluten-free beers and ciders get their own fridge. Refreshingly, prices for most bottles is on the shelves below (unlike most Philly places) and you can get singles or 6-packs of almost all the 12 oz beers. They carry great selections of the Founders, Bells, Russian River, Port, Duck-Rabbit as well as good selection of local craft like Voodoo and Troegs.
The more limited beers like Voodoo Black Magick, Founders KBS, Hopslam, etc often are not kept on the fridge shelves, but behind the bar. If you know of an upcoming release, call the beer garden and make a reservation.
They have about 20 beers on draft at any given time and almost all of them can be had in growlers. I remember having Pliny the Elder, Sculpin, Hill Farmstead Citra, Old Raspy on nitro here. This also allows you to get samples of something before you commit to buying a glass of it.
The guys who work here vary in their knowledge of craft beer with some that are experts like Dan and others that are enthusiasts still learning. However, all are nice and will almost always offer to let you try something on draft for free. They ask what you like and can make recommendations based on that. If you want something and ask, they'll do what they can to help you out. If you see something on the back shelf not for sale that you like, make a trade offer for it. A good Cantillon could probably get you most of the beer back there.
The food here is pretty straightforward pizza joint food. The nice thing is that you can order from the beer garden and have either a slice or a whole pizza delivered to the beer garden. There is a small seating area by the front of the store, but also standing bar by the register where a TV is conveniently placed, and normally tuned in to local sports.
Great place, the biggest "problem" is that too many people know about it and often the most desirable recent releases are quickly gone like KBS, or even Sculpin in bottles. They do try their best to keep the shelves well stocked. A minor quibble is that the prices are significantly higher than the grocery stores (Wegman's and Whole Foods), however this isn't really a fair comparison since they are different animals altogether. Pinocchio's does compares well to Hawthornes, Foodery's and various city shops like Food & Friends and Latimer Deli. Almost all beers will be cheaper at Pinocchio's than at those locations, and approximately comparable to Capone's although many bombers seem to be $0.50 or $1 cheaper. However, this is off-set by the large selection and the fact that I would need to drive another 30-40 miles or so round trip to one of the grocery stores and gas these days is not cheap, so I think the pricing is fair due to the selection they have and the possibility of one-stop shopping.
05-07-2011 04:57:34 | More by Soonami
More User Reviews:
4.04/5 rDev -8.8%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
This is a review mostly for the beer section and not for the attached restaurant. Such is the crazy current PA laws so this review will focus on the retail beer outlet.
Inside it's pretty small but offers a solid selection. The isle is quite small, and you would think from outside the place would be larger but it isn't it's a tad cramped, Numerous recent brews that are distributed plus a few occasional PA surprises that might be as common for the East Coast. Deschutes, Port Brewing and Lost Abbey, Alesmith, Jester King, the odd Russian River.
THere is great service here though, with very cordial staff who will help you out with any questions, but without being pushy. Rural PAs provides some reasonable prices, and nothing here is outrageous.
However, there are only a few odd selections that peaked my interest. I probably wouldn't make my way out here on a long trip, but if I was in the area without question I would stop by to take a look for some tasty brews. Growlers are available as well.
01-28-2014 00:45:45 | More by smakawhat
4.54/5 rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Pinocchio's is about as good as it gets for a bottle shop/bar combination in the Western burbs. Don't be fooled by the old-time feel, this place has been a staple for decades because they provide a consistently good product. Park, walk past the front door, walk past the take out, and hit the beer garden in the back.
At this point sensory overload takes over. This place is narrow with a row of coolers to the left and a few more on the right, and more often than not, pretty crowded given the small space, but don't get overwhelmed. Walk up to the counter and pick up the draft list, at which point you'll probably be greeted by one of the awesome bartenders. 25 taps and usually all of them are intriguing. I usually go here expecting to stay for the long haul. Grab a beer, settle in, and take a sip. Suddenly, a moment of clarity, warmth overtakes you and you feel as though everyone there is or could be your friend. No longer overwhelmed, take a second, or a minute, or a few hours and check out the beer in those coolers...don't try and drool on the ground, but if you happen to do so, the bartenders will be happy to give you a rag to clean it up... Their selection is fantastic, and they do get special releases on the regular, but they move quick. I cannot numerate the amount of great things I've bought from here, and the prices tend to be reasonable, for example I recently picked up Eclipses for $25. In this area they are some of the biggest supporters of Oskar Blues and Founders, so their stuff stays in stock. I love me some 19.3oz Dale's Pale cans.
The pizza here is great and they do provide awesome monthly specials. The rest of the food is nothing special, but it will keep you sated. The restaurant portion of Pinocchio's is more like a diner, and if you go in there expecting that, you won't be disappointed. Service follows in the same vein as a diner, so don't expect an over the top experience, but you'll have a great time. This is the kind of place where you can be yourself, where you can be loud and obnoxious, and where you can have a whole lot of fun doing nothing with friends. I have met a many fantastic people that go to or work at this place, and every time I go I find myself meeting someone new or seeing a friend of old.
The only way this place could be better is if the beer garden was bigger. When I go to Pin, it's usually for the following:
-Grabbing a beer, ordering food, and finishing said beer while putting together a 6'er and waiting for my food.
-Having some beers with friends...this may or may not end with me taking food home; the best part, kitchen is open until 1am
-Pre-dinner or pre-going out beers; for the nights we're going to a BYO (Fellini's is devine) or nights we want a "different" vibe; like shameless karaoke at Joclyns
-Post-dinner or post-going out beers; cannot go wrong with a good night cap
-Anytime I visit Media...
01-15-2014 01:33:02 | More by life_is_beautiful
Pinocchio's Restaurant in Media, PA
97 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.