Plaza Liquors & Fine Wine

Not Rated.
Plaza Liquors & Fine WinePlaza Liquors & Fine Wine
BA SCORE
98
world-class

45 Ratings
Ratings: 45
Reviews: 37
rAvg: 4.5
pDev: n/a
[ Store ]

2642 N Campbell Ave
Tucson, Arizona, 85719-3102
United States
phone: (520) 327-0452

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Notes:
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(Place added by: mzwolinski)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 45 | Reviews: 37 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by mzwolinski:
Photo of mzwolinski
4.65/5  rDev +3.3%

Fine selection by any standard, and one of the best places to buy beer-to-go in Tucson. Located a few miles north of the University, Plaza Liquors is a small store but is packed with a large selection of fine beer (and wine/liquor). Lots of hard to find single bottles, and a very good selection of six-packs. See their website for current specials -- though it appears now to be a few months out of date. Very friendly staff -- this seems to be one of the more beer-oriented liquor stores in town. Nice to find a place with a good selection of quality beverages that isn't just run by wine snobs!

More User Reviews:
Photo of MTBDesertGnome
4.97/5  rDev +10.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Great local establishment that's been here forever. Knowledge of beers is awesome, and their recommendations are spectacular.

Photo of Lobina
5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of EyePeeAyBryan
4.3/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of hhollins11
4.52/5  rDev +0.4%

Photo of UlfAndreas
5/5  rDev +11.1%

True some bombers may be priced a dollar or two extra here. But to someone living by plaza without a car that's totally worth it. The selection is just fine. I've been lucky to always get my hands on the bruery bottles here as well as friends grabbing bcbs.

Super awesome friendly and helpful employees. I'd love to find a liquor store like this in DC.

Photo of ONovoMexicano
2/5  rDev -55.6%

I probably just come in at all the wrong times and that's why I never can find any beer worth buying. Or I'm just too cheap, since I'm not willing to pay several dollars more for a sixer or bomber here.

Or it could be that, when coming from the craft-beer-distribution-deprived New Mexico, I come into a well-reputed liquor store thinking I'm going to hit the jackpot and walk out with a big haul and yet, I somehow leave here empty-handed.

Here's why:

- There are lots of beers in here (yes, I only care about the beer) collecting dust on shelves. They're undesirable to locals and sit there for ages and oxidize and lose flavors or morph into messes and unsuspecting buyers pick them up and get a deteriorated product. That pisses me off that a quality liquor store would do something like that. I expect such from Total Wine and BevMO, but not a local store looking to survive off of little things like customer service.

- The selection here has always been awfully weak for me. Again, I want beers that Arizona gets that New Mexico doesn't, and yet there's really very little here to get excited about. I'll let the dollars talk here, as in, when I came in here, I found nothing worth buying and spent $0. The next day I went to Tap & Bottle and spent $50+. One place had rarity, hard-to-get, and highly-rated beers and the other had shelf turds and the same selection a Trader Joe's might have. Oh, and one is a lot more expensive and doesn't allow you to drink a beer right on the premises. You figure out which one.

I willingly give away money for beer all the time. To a fault. To the point of jeopardizing my daughter's future. But Plaza has shown me the path to saving money and it involves their beer selection and prices.

Photo of Chilly_E
4.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of MikeyDFresh
4.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of BillRoth
4.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Punkinheid
5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of CuriousMonk
4.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of DrinkBeerThinkBeer
5/5  rDev +11.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

There is a reason this place has been voted Tucson's Best Liquor Store by the Tucson Weekly ever since they started ranking the best shops in town to get your fix. This place is the ultimate wonderland for drinkers of every caliber, be they new to the game and interested in dipping into the world of craft beer, or seasoned aficionados searching for a special bottle of tequila to impress that well-traveled friend who swears he's already had the best tequila in the world just because he went to Puerto Vallarta one time.

But really, I go here for the beer. While "build a 6-pack" beer sales are quickly becoming a popular offering at chain liquor stores, Plaza Liquors has been doing it longer than the big-box stores (don't go there!) have even been in town. With a regular flow of new hard-to-find and flagship craft and import beers finding their way onto the shelves each week, it's a borderline insult to call Plaza anything less than Tucson's craft beer mecca. Only the freshest beer makes it into their inventory, and when you catch word that your favorite brewery just released that amazing seasonal you have been waiting all year to get your hands on, rest assured that it'll appear in Plaza's fridges in no time!

What's more is that the people working here are amazing human beings. Mark is one of the friendliest guys you'll ever meet, and if you happen to be a Star Trek nerd, his trekkie paraphernalia is bound to keep you entertained as you stand in line (and if you go any time around rush hour, there will most certainly be a line!) after hunting for that wine, spirit, or beer you only recently caught wind of through the grapevine. Can't decide what to buy after perusing the sea of alcoholic nectar contained in his warmly-lit shop? Ask him for a suggestion and he'll surely find you the perfect bottle to match the occasion and budget you have in mind! And ever couple weeks, Mark writes up a flyer detailing Plaza news, new inventory, and the latest neighborhood and Tucson-area activism and happenings.

Brandy is the sweetest gal you'll ever buy booze from, guaranteed. She'll always steer you in the right direction if you're looking for a recommendation, and her knowledge of sour beers is unparalleled! And after a long day at work, her smile and sprightly personality are bound to lift your spirits and set the tone for an enjoyable evening at home with your drink of choice.

Stout is THE guy to go to with your craft beer inquiries. Can't decide if you really want to blow $15 on that bomber despite the 90+ Beer Advocate rating? Ask this man for his thoughts and if he's had the beer (in all likelihood, he either has or can tell you more about it than the bottle can), you'll quickly know if it's the right beer for you. And once you become a Plaza Liquors regular like countless patrons before you have, you'll surely find yourself striking up conversations about all things fermentable with this guy each time you drop in.

In fact, you can rest assured that every soul working at Plaza Liquors has nothing but your satisfaction and happiness at the top of their priorities. By creating such a warm, familial environment, Mark has built a business staffed by people who seem to truly love their job and frequented by customers who are obliged to pay a small premium for what amounts to a joyous experience and the honor of being dubbed a "Plaza Regular."

Down the rabbit hole you shall go the first time you open the door of Plaza Liquors, and out you shall come a more enlightened consumer and a proud supporter of Tucson's finest liquor store.

Cheers!

Photo of AmandaLu
4.93/5  rDev +9.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

Plaza is a great locally-owned store. They have an impressive collection of craft beers, and the staff are super friendly. They are also dog-friendly, and have treats for my pup every time we come in! You can mix your own six-pack, and beers are individually-priced, which makes it easy to find the price point you're looking for.

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.3/5  rDev -4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Stopped by this place on a business trip after reading reviews here on BA.
Its in a small plaza...kind of hidden, but good parking and somewhat easy to find.
Atmosphere - its a liquor store...cool beerk geeks behind the counter
Nice selection of brews...lots of odell, New Belgium, local Arizona, epic, left hand, lost abbey, and rogue. I bought a Fantome Boo! - $15, an odell Mountain Standard single, and a Bells New Coast Old Ale ~ $2.50 each. You can mix singles (awesome for travellers) and apparently you get a discount if you pick up anything over a case...
So nice selecton, not huge, but well stocked and thoughtful, good nice service, and somewhat reasonable/average prices. Nice spot.

Photo of DonDirkA
4.16/5  rDev -7.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

The service here seems nice... if you're a regular. If you're a guy like me who only stops in every few months because he lives too far away, they could care less. When they finally ask if I need help it has more of that "We're watching you" vibe than that "I'm here to help" vibe.

The selection is pretty awesome, the bombers need more rotation since about half of what I saw here the other day was the same as what I saw when I was last here like.. 6 months ago?

I still really want to like this place though. Their true selection lies in the singles they have in the back of the store where you can make your own six pack. That's some good stuff.

I said they're reasonable because they basically compare to other craft beer places. A little more expensive than a Total Wine or BevMo, but that is expected if you want to shop local. And honestly, that doesn't bother me. They are close to the same prices as my usual store (Magee Road Liquors), but they have a different type of selection. Its cool, so if you're in town or in the area, its worth checking out.

Photo of TXhomebrewer
4.8/5  rDev +6.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Stopped in while in town for my sisters graduation.

The staff was awesome and helpful. For having such a small space, i was supprised at the very nice selection of beers they had. You can even purchase singles! Needless to say, I found quite a few bottles to take back to Texas that I can't get there.

Overall the place is awesome and I'm glad I looked up bottle shops in the area and choose this one based off reviews I found here on BA. Do yourself a favor and check it out! You won't be disappointed.

Photo of uawildcat
4.8/5  rDev +6.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

I would have never found this place if it wasn't for beer advocate. It is a tiny little shop with signs that only say Plaza in large maroon letters. I had passed the place many times and wrote it off as a classless joint to pick up packs of Budweiser. Needless to say I was wrong.

First off, the best thing about Plaza is that you can buy single bottles at the same price as an individual bottle in a 6-pack.

When I walked in I was overwhelmed with the selection of beer and wine. Especially the selection of local beer and wine. If you want something from AZ this is the place to go. That being said, the store is quite small with little room to walk around and browse on a Friday night.

The staff is very friendly, knowledgable, and willing to help you out.

Selection of certain breweries seems to fluctuate throughout the year. Sometimes beers aren't always placed in the singles fridge, so ask if it seems like they are out of something!

Basically, if you are in Tucson, you can't go wrong by going to this place.

Photo of tchaos
3.66/5  rDev -18.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

I was really looking to get here on a recent trip to Tucson.

True to other reviews, there is a small amount of parking, and you are probably luck to stand two people side-by-side in any row inside.

Best thing i liked about the store was, although shelves are stocked with 4 and 6-packs of bottles and cans, everything is priced and available as a single.

Bomber selection seems reasonable for the size of the store, but it was much smaller than I expected, save for the Uinta brews.

I may have come on a bad day, but the staff seemed more interested in talking to each other than in assisting me with my purchase. A few specific items I asked about were noted to be in stock, but then turned out to be missing. They have also recently dropped Allagash (rightly) for repeated past-date beer.
That said, I did pick up 5 things I can't get in FL to toss in the suitcase for the return trip home.

I am glad that the store has a loyal local following -- I fear that having Trader Joes, Whole Foods, BevMo, and TotalWine, all within a couple of miles may convince many people to purchase craft elsewhere.

Photo of gregshead
4.34/5  rDev -3.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

A: Typical liquor store but more beer sections and good craft brews in the fridges than most places I've seen in my travels.

Q: Lots to like with all of the beer in the fridge. Bummer that some beers like IPAs are left out but I guess there is only so much fridge space.

Service: People are super helpful. I've done phone orders for my father in law to pick up on his trip out and they have been super helpful.

Selection: This is where thie place really shines. Bell's, Odells, Left Hand, Bison plus a good amount of CA stuff too. This place really tries

Value: Some things are cheaper than in CA other things are a dollar or two more than you might want. However, buy 4 6-packs, get 10% off your order. Pulls it back into the reasonable range.

Photo of fcbaker49
4.58/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Plaza is my favorite beverage store in Tucson. It's small, crowded, and not especially convenient, but being inside you feel you're at the core of something. Virtually every inch of this place is stuffed with good wine, alcohol, or tasty beer. Any area that's not, seems to be an homage to Star Trek. The beer selection ranges wide from rows of single bottle craft beers, to a decent selection of British and Germans, to Belgian specialty bombers. Sometimes you find quite unusual stuff. An area of the labyrinth in the rear has floor to ceiling six packs of various craft beers and imports. The staff is great and will talk to you at length on any product. Periodically, the store hosts wine and beer tastings.

I admit it's not 21st century efficiency, nor is it the lowest prices, but I somehow feel good about buying something here. If you would rather buy a book at the local mystery bookstore rather than paying 43 cents less at Borders, this could be the store for you.

Photo of t0rin0
4.28/5  rDev -4.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Visited 3/3/2011 during Ratebeer Winter Gathering.

Located in a small dusty shopping center next to a planned parenthood (or some such place). I got a kick out of that.

The majority of the floor space is liquor and wine but the back wall and the whole row of fridges are full of beer. One set of shelves is dedicated to Bells. A couple of the fridges are full of AZ and NM beer. The rest is an interesting mix of imported beer and random breweries that distribute to AZ. I found most of the Crooked Line series from Uinta on the shelf but only picked up the barleywine.

The service was nice and very grateful to us for bringing in a dozen customers, though I suspect it had something to do with knowing that they'd be getting rated. Either way, they are nice people.

Prices were good on most items ($1-$2 for single 12 oz's) and not so good on other items ($12-$15 for the Crooked Line beers). For what ever reason there was a 10% off for beer that day.

Would definitely go back for some new ticks, or for some Bell's.

Photo of TheSSG
4.7/5  rDev +4.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

I quite like Plaza.

It has a laid-back atmosphere. And it's local.

They have a really nice selection (Don't let the outside size fool you). If you're looking for some 22oz Bombers, this is the place you need to be.

They may be the only store in Tucson that PROUDLY specializes in bier. Most places peddle the hard stuff and focus on cheap adjuncts in the bier section. Plaza stocks craft and import bier with pride and purpose.

The staff is always fun and helpful.

I like to go during the week when the sign says 10% off! Then I mix and match a 6-pack, and can usually get out for under $9 (which is reasonable).

This should definitely be one of the most frequented places by any BeerAdvocate Tucsonans.

Edit: Moving away from Tucson, I realized just how cool of a place this is.
I miss my regular conversations with the staff about bier, and about whatever else is just going on. It's the quintessential local business.
While the store does not have the *ABSOLUTE* largest selection I've ever seen, their selection is still stellar. Not only do they stock an excellent array, but that buy-by-the-bottle attitude is something I still miss each and every day.

From when I originally wrote this review until now, Plaza had transitioned into my PRIMARY bier source. At least once a week, I got a mixed 6-pack of whatever the new season brought in.
Even somewhere as EPIC as Discount liquors in Milwaukee, while having 3X the selection (and Plaza is no slouch!) lacks the vibe and the great, friendly service.

I SERIOUSLY miss having this place as my local go-to store.

Photo of JordonHoltzman
4.65/5  rDev +3.3%

This place is a gold-mine, too bad I was only there on vacation. The selection was phenomenal, and I received help by one of the employees and I was very satisfied with his recommendations. They have the mix a sixer option which is great, and every bottle is individually priced. They had pretty deep selections from the breweries that they carried too. For a small store, it was packed with a ton of brews and, for anyone interested, it appeared that they had a good selection of wines (but I don't know anything about wine, so I'm just inferring). I only wish there were 50 places like plaza liquors that I knew about and were near me!

Photo of mulder1010
4.5/5  rDev 0%

Q-- Amazing selection of stuff for such a small place!!! It is a bit crowded but it is very well organized and put together.

S-- Simply put.... The best in Tucson. Staff is knowledgeable and willing to talk. They know beer, wine and liquor.

S-- not as good as bevmo but almost on par. Excellent wine selections and the beer is muy bueno. Once you have been in the store a few times you figure out the layout and how it works. Beer selection is excellent and layed out very well. really like how they stress a mix a 6 pack in that store.

V-- Hours are the only issues with this store. If you live in the foothills or on the east side of Tucson it can be difficult to get there but it is worth it. Amazing selection for such a small footprint.

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Plaza Liquors & Fine Wine in Tucson, AZ
98 out of 100 based on 45 ratings.