Steve's Liquor

Not Rated.
Steve's LiquorSteve's Liquor
BA SCORE
95
world-class

54 Reviews
Reviews: 54
Visits: 78
rAvg: 4.32
pDev: n/a
[ Store ]

122 Junction Rd
Madison, Wisconsin, 53717-2687
United States
phone: (608) 833-5995

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @stevesjunction

Notes:
Place added by: cokes

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Reviews: 54 | Visits: 78
Photo of leftmindedrighty
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%

This was my first stop when I blew into Madison. New Glarus beer was just calling to me.

I found the place real easily, which always helps. I proceeded to grab a shopping cart, as I wasn't naive enough to think I was just picking up a few six packs.

Coolers upon coolers of awesome beer can be found here. I stocked up on New Glarus, Central Waters, Capital Brewing, and other local favorites.

Great selection, and the guy working the counter was most helpful and really knew his beer.

Awesome store. Next time I'm in Madison, I'll be back for sure. (555 characters)

Photo of ATLbeerDog
3.64/5  rDev -15.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

RE - reviewed as Jan has left and now the selection is just fair. It still has what it had before it just hasn't grown with the times.
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OLD REVIEW
This place rocks! Jan was off the day I was there, but it did not matter. Karen and Mike were incredibly helpful. The selection was awesome. So many beers that are not available in IL and certainly not Georgia. Lots of super small Wisconsin breweries. New Glarus, Tyranena, Capital, Central Waters, Furthermore, Sprecher, Cross Plains, Lake Louie, Lakefront, among others. Mix a six was also very nice!

Location on Madison's Westside, conveniently located off Highway 14 and just a 2 hour drive from Chicago's Northern Suburbs. (678 characters)

Photo of Homerbag
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%

This is a place that reaaly respects beer and knows the product. I stopped in here on a day trip. All the beer is in coolers, that are walk in as well. I have never seem that in a place that sells taht much craft beer. A good amount of rare Europian beers. One thing that impressed me is that they cellar beers here as well, then sell then at some reasonable prices. I meet Jan who was extremely pleasant and knew what she was talking about, and knew what I was talking about.

A great place that treats people very good. Stop in if you are close or not so close and you will enjoy spending money on good beers. (612 characters)

Photo of drseamus
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%

Jan "the beer baroness" is awesome. I'm always a bit skeptical whenever I am told that someone knows a lot about beer but she certainly exceeded expectations and was great to talk to.

This is the only place I've ever been where all the beer is in coolers which is nice. They have about 20 cooler doors all along one side of the shop. Their belgian selection lacks a bit, but that could be an importing problem. Their craft selection is very impressive and I ended up spending $100 while i was there.

I'm definitely glad I saw it in passing and stopped in. (557 characters)

Photo of Atron67
4.3/5  rDev -0.5%

Q- steves is my favorite place because it always has a great selection.

S- the service is awesome, Jan the beer barronness loves talking about beer and always brings up the spectacular flavors of this or that beer.

S- probably the best selection around. good all around

V- value.. so i always feel like steve's is a bit expensive, however its not that much more expensive, however i never really mind either though because it is a local place and they do a great job of keeping up on selection and i feel they deserve it. (526 characters)

Photo of sprucetip
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%

I live in Anchorage, Alaska, but grew up in Iowa. On a current visit home I explored Steve's with my dad and brother. In a general comparison, this store blows away anything in the Quad-City area [Daventport & Bettendorf, Iowa; Rock Island, Moline, & East Moline, IL (yes that's 5)]. But we have better in Anchorage. It's a good shop. The Belgian selections was solid in quality but not particularly extensive. The same is true for English and Germans. There was a very extensive selection of Wisconsin and other midwest beers, and a respectable selection of micro's from western states, most but not all of which I was already familiar with. Surely you can find something agreeable here with which to wet you whistle. Single selection wasn't huge, but Jan willingly broke up 6 packs to let us increase our selection, as I will describe later.

The highlight of the visit, by a long shot, was getting service from Jan (manager? owner?). Would it be inappropriate to say "serviced by Jan?" She had a fun personality, maybe she'll chuckle? She was pretty stoked when she saw our first few selections, and lead us on the rest of our mission. She seemed to be excited to talk beer with aspiring beer geeks, and was more than forthcoming with her opinions and descriptions of the various brews we inquired about. She was more than willing to break up 6 packs, saying "it just takes a minutes for me to put it into the computer" as a single. She clearly wanted us to have a good experience, and we did. When I asked about brews to take back to Alaska for the beer geeks there, she first suggested some western beers that we have access to already, Lagunitas, Rogue, and Great Divide. I was looking for things we don't get. She suggested some that I was already on top of, New Glarus Belgian Red and Raspberry Tart, and some from Lake Louie, Sprecher, and Bell's. She was very high on Bell's, especially their Cherry Stout. Ultimately, we didn't really like the Cherry Stout, but I don't mean to be dissing on Jan's suggestion. She had some good advice, strongly encouraging us to drink some of the better Belgian's at warmer temps, something we know to do but my brother resists sometimes. The Ommegang Chocolate Indulgance was almost disappointing at first, though very smooth and balanced and not particularly sweet. I liked it better as it warmed. The Sprecher wheat was not as much like a German wheat as I had hoped. In general, my bias toward big, bold, often hopped up western beers has been validated by sampling midwest beers. But I digress.

At one point I told Jan I had recently enjoyed St. Bernardus Grotten Brown for the first time, and it was from a tap in Anchorage. She wobbled and swooned like a teenage girl with a crush, gushed about how fabulous the beer, and held on to a cooler for balance. This is a woman who enjoys beer! She also gave us an impromptu intro to French Farmhouse beer, and stated that she is on a bit of a mission to educate folks about it and carve out a niche supplying it.

Though her prices were a touch higher, the 10% discount for buying 6 or more specialty beers largely mitigated that fact.

Cheers (3,142 characters)

Photo of joe1510
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%

Steve's is the store I stop in every time I pass through the Madison area. Everything is kept in great shape and within the freshness dates. The biggest wall is all beer coolers with a walk in you can search through for anything not on the cooler shelves.

The people at the desk are very friendly and helpful. I asked for some suggestions on places in the area and they were glad to give recommendations. They were also commenting on the beer I purchased and making suggestions about it.

The selection is very good. Full lines of the Wisconsin favorites including the special releases. Tyranena, Central Waters, New Glarus, Lake Louie, Ale Asylum and others. Good selection of American crafts and a solid selection of Belgians. Fair prices on everything I picked up to purchase.

Good store to pick up all the Wisconsin goodies.Make sure to stop by on your way through town. (876 characters)

Photo of emerge077
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

This was my 3rd visit to Steve's, and it continues to be a regular stop on my radar.

New this time, the walk-in singles area had been moved, and there were new mixed-six selections for Capital and New Glarus (10% off 6). This is a positive development, my old gripe would have been that most regional stuff was 6-pack only. It would be ideal to see a huge wall of singles here, but that's just a personal pipe dream. I'll echo what others have said, huge regional/local selection with full lines from most breweries. They usually have whatever seasonal that's in current rotation. Great mix of imports, a number of choice Belgians. Small deli section that's good for snacks or throwing together a picnic.

Service was great, the lady at the counter was also the beer buyer. She answered all my questions, and gave great recommendations. (842 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.2/5  rDev -2.8%

After visiting quite a few stores in the Madison area, I found that Steve's Liquor had a wider selection of "local state" type beers. Oddly, it's pretty different from the selection at Steve's Wine's. They have a WHOLE WALL of coolers that house decent beers (all 6-packs), and a small section of that is devoted to bombers. I visited a few other stores, mostly supermarkets and specialty food stores, and I never saw as wide a selection. They didn't have any single 12 ouncers, but I bought a few bombers of beers from a brewpub in Ohio. The store was clean, well organized, and the staff seemed helpful based on the interactions I saw with other customers. Recommended. (671 characters)

Photo of EvilKeith
3.85/5  rDev -10.9%

Steve’s Liquors is in a newer brick building situated on a hill overlooking a busy intersection. The parking lot is large enough to handle any number of customers.
The interior is clean, well lit and well organized. The selection of wine and liquors is pretty good, but where this place excels in is its selection of quality craft beers. I was surprised to see beers by Three Floyds here. Craft beers from across the country line the coolers.
I found a good selection of beers from all of the larger Wisconsin breweries. What really impressed me was the selection of beers from smaller Wisconsin brewers. I ended up leaving with sixes from the small brewers, these were beers I did not see anywhere else in Madison. (721 characters)

Photo of 4thoseabout2bock
3.85/5  rDev -10.9%

I actually think the other location of Steve's has a better selection than this one -- more imports esp Belgians, and you could buy singles of some of the American craft brews.

I could imagine the service might be better at this location as the counter folks here seemed more professional while the other store was staffed by college students who were more interested in each other.

However, we did ask, when we saw the limited beer selection in the coolers along the back wall, whether they had some warm beer somewhere. They said no and did not bother to mention that there was more beer back inside the cooler!

So it seems based on the other reviews we did not see all that this store had to offer. One thing they did have in their favor was a decent selection of Lake Louie and Central Waters, which weren't available at Woodmans. But our other stops, Riley's, the other Steves and Woodman's East, all had their strengths as well, so I did not perceive that any one destination would be far and away the best stop. (1,027 characters)

Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%

Solid store with great service. Wide variety of American craft six backs and foreign, mainly Britist, Belgian, and German, singles. Expect to find all area beers along with plenty from New Holland, Three Floyds, Two Brothers, Smuttynose, Avery, Victory, Goose Island, etc… American craft singles selection is almost completely lacking compared to the other Steve’s, Riley’s, and Woodman’s west. Price is comparable to the other shops in town, save Woodman’s. 5% discounts are common for holidays, special occasions, or just because you asked. Staff is very good, especially the older lady (part owner?). The supply of Belgian singles changes enough to get me to make return visits every two or three months. Nice wine and booze selections as well. Getting in and out of the parking lot can be a pain at certain times of the day. Mostly, I use this store for Belgian singles that are not available anyplace else. Woodman’s is better for sixers and Riley’s is better for most singles. (989 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

I pulled up at Steve's Liquor after a nearly five hour drive, stretched my legs, went in search of good beer and found it. Clean, well-lit store with wine and liquor in the center and beer in coolers along the back wall. As far as American craft beer is concerned, this place probably had the best selection of any of the four stores that I visited yesterday.

I didn't take notes, but all of the major Wisconsin breweries were represented as well as a lot of the smaller ones. I also saw Great Lakes, Bell's, Smuttynose, Founders, New Holland, Three Floyds and many, many others. The biggest disappointment for me was that they didn't sell American craft beer in singles (I've decided to knock back the selection score a half notch as a result, even though the overall selection was quite good). I didn't have the space or the money to take home 25-30 sixers of beer.

What singles were available were almost entirely from Belgium, Germany and England. These were located in a dimly lit, freezing cold 'cooler' behind door #9. If I ever return, I plan to take a parka because I couldn't stand to be in there in a T-shirt for longer than 3-4 minutes at a time. I gave the shelves a good look, came out to warm up and then went back in to make my selections. Great for the beer, not so great for the customers.

I didn't quite spend $50, but still got a 10% discount. I picked up a bottle each of Unibroue 15 and Chambly Noire because I wasn't sure that I'd see them anywhere else (and didn't). The woman who checked me out (Jan, the self-proclaimed 'Baroness of Beer'; that's what it said on the business card that she gave me, but to her credit, she seemed embarrassed by it) was very nice and chatted me up for a bit. She didn't seem too thrilled when I told her that I was going to Woodman's next, but kindly gave me directions since Mapquest didn't do such a great job of leading me to her place.

Steve's Liquor, along with Woodman's, looks to be the class of Western Madison. The selection of American craft beer puts Iowa to shame; although we're at least equal and maybe superior when it comes to Belgian beer. As far as I'm concerned, this is a must stop for travelers, although keep in mind that you won't be able to buy singles of New Glarus, Tyranena, Lake Louis, etc. (2,281 characters)

Photo of objectivemonkey
4.2/5  rDev -2.8%

So, this is supposedly one of the best beer stores in Madison. Was a little disappointed. Smaller than I imagined, but still a decent selection from the all-cooled beer section. Quality on average seem pretty top shelf. I almost missed the singlesthough, had to ask... you actually walk into the cooler toward a pretty decent sized bookcase of goodies. Stuff I know is good, stuff I haven't seen... The help was pretty good, friendly, not invasive but helpful when needed. Basically, if I lived in Madison, I'd do my regional and micro shopping at Woodmans, but definitely go here for the better, harder to find stuff. What I took away? Dogfish WWStout (which I hadn't seen at 3 other stores), and Meantime London Porter. But, there were many other tempting me for sure. (770 characters)

Photo of rugger
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%

I walked in here after waiting for them to open. They probably thought I was an alkie waiting for them to open. The guy that was there was real friendly and was joking around with me about my car. Anyway, the place was nice, and smaller than I had expected. All of the beers were in the coolers along the wall in the back and in the walk in part. The walk in was full of boxes that made it hard to walk around in, but they did have a nice selection. It was hard to find some of the things that I was looking for, but seeing as how I had all day to look at beer stores I was able to find most of what I was looking for. A nice place to say the least. If I am ever up there again (11 hour drive) I will stop in. (709 characters)

Photo of nflmvp
4/5  rDev -7.4%

Another of many stops on my most recent trip to Madison. On my way in the door, I asked about a quantity discount (because I had been OFFERED one at Star Liquors earlier in the day). Because of the response I got, it seems to me that it is not policy, however, they DID offer me 5% if I put together at least a case of craft beers...and that was EASY.

They have a wide selection and I was able to walk away with some Three Floyds, Great Divide, New Holland (Dragon's Milk-YUM) and a couple of nice Imports.

The prices were reasonable but I felt that they were a little higher than some of the other places I hit the same day so the 5% discount didn't really amount to much. However, when I had questions about a certain beer, another emplyee offered to do some quick research for me online and came back within a couple of minutes with the answers I was looking for.

I'll go back the next time I'm in town (914 characters)

Photo of Erdinger2003
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%

When I first walked into this place I thought I had gotton the wrong liquor store. All that I could see was wine bottles. Then I saw the beer in the cooler off to my right. They are a little strange in keeping all of their beer at a constant cool temperature, but I don't know if that's a big deal to anyone else. Walk into this cooler and you will find your imports. A very good selection that is comparable to HyVee Wine and Spirits. I tried to get some video of all the beer for my records, but as it turns out there is some kind of business rivalry or something going on there because I was practically yelled at. I was asked who I worked for, I replied the name of the local restaurant, but I don't think he knew what that was. If I hadn't come 300 miles for a great selection I would've left. Instead of being informed of the situation I was treated as a theif, however it wouldn't be too difficult to write down the selection as well. I think that information should be shared and not boguarded like it's a secret, but he didn't know I don't own a store, nor do I give a crap whether someone steals his beer that the rest of the world knows about already.

Re: review

Went back a few more times and found that the service is outstanding if you know Jan the beer Baroness. She knows her stuff. (1,304 characters)

Photo of badbeer
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%

This place is a nice place to visit with a decent wine and beer selection, however I was searching the beer only. Beer is kept in a walk-in cooler with a decent selection of singles. I thought some prices were fair, but it is overall a little pricey. Service was good, I liked that I was pretty much left alone to look and they only asked once if I needed help. The thing I didn't like so much is that there didn't always seem to be an order, some things seemed to be almost hidden because other bottles were pushed in front and I actually didn't find a few beers until I went inside the cooler behind the racks. Decent place worthy of a visit, but if you are looking for something look hard. (692 characters)

Photo of dirtylou
4.3/5  rDev -0.5%

This place gets by far the best publicity of a beer store on this site...honestly im not positive why

the service is pretty solid...these guys know beer. When i bring some off the wall stuff up to the counter, they compliment my tastes. The beer is well rotated and plentifull

but honestly, what does this place have i cant get downtown? The singles selection doesnt really rival Riley's or Woodman's...Theres a few belgians that you cant get anywhere else but everything else seems to be found downtown....I like going out there, but its really only a once in a month trip due to the location way out on the west side

prices are fair, but not really any different than anywhere else (692 characters)

Photo of beveragecaptain
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Steve's on Mineral Point has the best beer selection in Madison. They have a very large selection, much of which I haven't seen elsewhere in the city. Most of the sales people know about beer and like to talk about it. All beer is stored in coolers. In the cooler's on the right, there are six packs and single bottles of imports and non-local American beer. In the coolers on the left are mostly six packs of regional and Wisconsin beer. This includes most beers from New Glarus (including Unplugged), Capital, Bell's, Great Lakes, Founders, and much more. The best part of this store is the walk-in cooler. Be sure to check this out, as it is easy to miss. Lot's of single bottles of American, British, German, and Belgian beers. Bombers of Great Divide, Rogue, Bear Republic, and Avery. Bottles of Roquefort, St. Bernardus, Hanssens, Abbaye de Rocs. Prices are a bit expensive, but nothing unreasonable. Steve's, along with the Great Dane, are the two must visit places in Madison. (984 characters)

Photo of OldSock
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

Quality – Almost everything was in coolers, including a big walk in with a good selection of singles and cases. Clean, well lit store, with ample parking.

Service – Seemed like nice people, more than happy to chat for awhile and give me advice on where to find some Central Waters, which I never did actually find.

Selection – Very nice, with New Glarus, Lake Louie, Tyranena and Capital all represented well. It also had a good smattering of other regional micros and some imports, which I ignored.

A good stop from almost everything Wisconsin, but not a huge selection of other stuff. (600 characters)

Photo of kmpitz2
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%

I'd heard a lot of good things about this place, so I finally got the opportunity to stop here a few weeks ago. Its a rather unassuming building sitting off on its own from a large shopping complex across the street. It took me a minute to find the wall of beer, but I was not let down when I got there. Good representation of local beer...Lake Louie, Capital, Tyranena, and a decent selection of imports. Most of the beers at the store were housed in coolers, which was less than optimal for me as I was taking them back to Kentucky from there. Service was very good. When I had a question, the woman working took me back into the cooler to show me where the beers I wanted were hiding. Prices were right where I expected them. Overall a very good beer experience for me. (772 characters)

Photo of orbitalr0x
4/5  rDev -7.4%

I stopped in here with fellow BA kmpitz2 on our way to the Great Taste last weekend. Upon entering you are greeted by clean, open, well lit store that has rows and rows of wines and liquor. We headed to the coolers on the back wall of the store, which is where all the beer is kept. There are only a few random beers scattered across the floor, otherwise everything is located in the coolers.

They had a wide selection of stuff including New Glarus, Lake Louie (yay!), Flying Fish, Gray's, Tyranena, Sprecher and much more. Make sure you walk through the middle cooler to the shelf of singles in the back. Yes...it's freezing in there and unfortunately the floor is quite sticky and disgusting. My shoes kept sticking to the floor even after I walked out. However...there are some gems of singles in there that included Fish Tale 10th Anniversary and some random Two Brothers and Three Floyds stuff. Prices seemed pretty comparable to what I pay in Chicago. I was especially happy to have the chance to pick up some Lake Louie in the new six packs.

The girl at the register was very nice and excited to hear we were going to the fest. Overall, this is a nice store that should defintely be on your list of places to stop if you are going to be in Madison. Fairly easy to locate on the corner....they just need to clean up that floor by the singles rack! (1,360 characters)

Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.2/5  rDev -2.8%

My first time venturing out to the far west side of town to check out this heralded Mecca of beer here in Madison. I must say I was impressed. Their selection of beers is huge, a entire wall of refridgerated cases with vast amounts of local, regional, and national crafts brews, a nice selection of imports (more british brews than I've been able to find elsewhere in town) and plenty of swill too. One of three places in Madison (along with Riley's, Star Liquor and their University Ave. location) to find Lake Louie brews as well, which are always worth a try. The best part is their walk-in singles cooler, behind the huge wall of cases.A big shelf of rare and not-so rare crafts and imports. Lots of Belgians, lambics, Rogues, Young's, Sam Smith's and a host of other brews I've never seen anywhere else. Beware - it's fricking cold in there, I was pretty indecisive and froze my ass off in shorts. I've pretty much exhausted Riley's singles case so it was ncie to see some fresh meat. The sales staff is incredibly friendly and the lady who checked me out seemed very knowledgeable about beer, and told me a little about some of the beers I picked up and how I got some pretty good stuff. Like Riley's you get a 10% discount on 6 or more singles, which is a nice little deal. A little on the pricey side, some a little more than Riley's which is pricey in and of itself, but not astronomical. Definitely worth a look if you're in town, I only wish it was closer to campus. (1,477 characters)

Photo of slander
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Nothing worse than a dry hotel room. Everybody knows that. Yes, we were definitely going to need "provisions". I'm new in this time zone, as was (Evil) Davo, but thankfully good ol' Craig knew just where to hook slightly this way en route to Madison just that way...
What a grand and majestic name for a liquor store!! You're greeted first by wine displays a few deep and you can see the liquor along the far wall, and there's the beer, in a cooler, no, coolers, yea, many coolers, hey, a whole row of 'em with a secret door that takes you to refrigeratedsinglesland. A very healthy selection of Wisconsin beers (Capital, Grays, Lake Front, Stevens Point, Harbor City, Viking, Sprecher, New Glarus, South Shore, Central Waters, Leinenkugel, Tyranena, Berghoff, Lake Louie), regionals (Bells, Three Floyds, Goose Island, Founders, Big Sky, 2 Brothers, Summit, O'Fallon, Great Lakes, New Holland, Arcadia, Great Divide, Left Hand, Fort Collins), and coast to coasts (DogFishHead, Mendicino, Anchor, Rogue, Bear Republic, North Coast).
Belgians? Let me see. Westmalle, Delirium, okay, check. English? Um, yeah, Fullers, Sam Smith, you get the picture. What else? Unibroue, '97 Carnegie Porter, Le Coq Impy Extra Double Stout '00, a couple of meads, what else you want? Lake Louie Growlers. Perfectly chilled for Madison area hotel consumption, they had a few of 'em and they were dirt cheap.
Refrigeratedsinglesland is just that, kind of. There's a rack of bombers and various singles, mostly from the West Coast breweries. Otherwise, you're "in" on the beer cooler scene.
Up front, ice cream and frozen pizzas, an assortment of meats and a whole lot of cheese, and chocolate, chocolate, chocolate and chocolate.
Good damn beer store. (1,739 characters)

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Steve's Liquor in Madison, WI
95 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.