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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

No notes at this time.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 54 | Visits: 78
Photo of WiscoTerr
5/5  rDev +15.7%

I love this store. I live in Madison and stop by most of the liquor stores around town every couple weeks, but always seem to find the best selection at Steve's. It's a solid mix of the good local brews, without filling half the store with junk. They are always one of the first to get new breweries to town and have a Twitter presence which I personally love. They generally run $1 per product that other stores, but totally worth it to support local and have that extra knowledge on tap. My only knock is that they could have more singles for sale, but that's not a big deal. Also love that everything, including bombers, are in a cooler. (646 characters)

Photo of LittleTimmy
5/5  rDev +15.7%

Another location has opened up at 6227 McKee Rd off Highway 151 (small strip mall downhill from the Super Target). Regardless of which location, Steve's is a must stop if you're visiting Madison and would like to pick up some good Wisconsin beer. I always stop on my way out of town to look over their great selection of Lake Louie, Central Waters, Ale Asylum, Lakefront, New Glarus...well, you know the roll call. They also have some micros from farther afield, like Stone and Lagunitas, another pair I can't get back home in Iowa City. (537 characters)

Photo of GIVEMEBACKMYSON
4.85/5  rDev +12.3%

By far my favorite liquor store. They are continually working to get more quality brews into their coolers. The selection is terrific. The only place I see it lacking is in lawnmower beers. There are some beers I'd like to see there, but it's a problem with their distributor, i'm told.
The staff-whenever they see what I bring to the counter, they reveal themselves to be fellow hopheads. Very knowledgable about the beers worth knowing about, and they can talk beer with the best of em. But if all you want is a 40 of Camo and a packa Winstons, you might as well head elsewhere. (582 characters)

Photo of daledeee
4.85/5  rDev +12.3%

When we go to Madison, we always stop here. We are from Iowa. We cannot get Kalamazoo, Unibruie and some regional Wisconsin brews in Iowa. The Belgian selection is also adequate. Lots of cold beer here. And the best string cheese we have ever found. This store also has a large wine selection, even though I don't drink wine. (325 characters)

Photo of brakspear
4.7/5  rDev +8.8%

Finally, a store that recognizes that heat and sunlight are terrible companions to quality beers. Most, if not all, of the quality beers are stored in a large walk-in cooler with an excellent rack of single bottles of imports kept inside. The selection is excellent for many hard-to-find Wisconsin micro and craft breweries, the selection of regional and national craft brews is decent as well. Imports seem to lean towards Belgian beers, but there is also a nice selection of Continental lagers and British beers. As a plus, the staff was very helpful and and knowledgeable of the Wisconsin craft brewing scene. This will be a must stop every time I am on the west side of Madison. (682 characters)

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 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 Deuane
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%

Stopped in during Great Taste to stock up on all of those wonderful WI beers that we simply do not get in PA.

The staff could not have been more helpful in my quest....Mike, the guy who checked me out and the dude with the Aussie accent. They were more than happy to look for things in the stockroom, like a case of Tyranena Scurvy and call other stores to try and secure me some NG Raspberry Tart.

I was focusing on WI brews, they carry a vast array of labels from the majority of the states bottling micros, so what the total selection (non-Wisconsin beers) is like I am unsure...but it seemed solid enough and I doubt one would go wanting too much.

Everything was well stored and the place screamed clean and orderly.

I will certianly make this place a must stop the next time I am in town. (798 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 Schmitfaced414
4.64/5  rDev +7.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Staff was helpful and gave me accurate information on when to expect a shipment. They also do a good job keeping their Facebook page up to date with new arrivals. If you are in the area, I recommend stopping in to see what is on hand. I was able to pick up some nice bottles from TG and Karben4. (298 characters)

Photo of pweis909
4.55/5  rDev +5.3%

As a resident of a small town located far from a major metro center, I don't see the selection of brews that are available in many of the big cities. Therefore, when I accompanied my wife on a trip to Madison, I was thrilled to find that our hotel was less than a quarter mile from Steve's.

This place has the best selection of beer I have found in Wisconsin. I've only seen better at a spot in St. Paul and in San Francisco. (I know, I should get around more.)The beer cooler has a very good selection of Belgian and German beers, Wisconsin micros, Dogfishhead, and several California classics, such as Lagunitas, Stone, Bear Rupublic and more. If that doesn't sound like much, consider the source. In my part of Wisconsin, Dogfishhead and those Cali beers are almost completely absent, as are all of the Germans and most of the Belgians. Most of the beer is for sale as singles, also virtually unheard of in my part of the state.

The prices are also pretty darn reasonable, with most Wisconsin singles ranging from $1.5-2.5 and most other US micros ranging from $3-5. As I wasn't prepared to take back a big stash of beer, I only picked up a 750 of Rodenbach, which seemed like a good deal for me at $6. I compared some of the prices on the Trappists (Rochefort, Westmalle, Chimay and Orval) that are distributed in my neck of the woods, and they were about the same, give or take a quarter. (1,396 characters)

Photo of seanlaughery
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Visited Steve's on recommendation from a friend while in Madison to visit family for the holidays and was incredibly pleased with the highly knowledgable staff and selection.

I'm looking forward to coming back around Christmas time when I visit my family next. (262 characters)

Photo of CRJMellor
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Steve's is set right off the main East-West drag in mad-town. Easy to find, great parking out front and some relaly nice surprises inside.
As you walk in moderate to low priced wines dominate the floors. Only after getting your bearings do you see the Wall of Beer. At first glance you see the generla crap but then as you move down the coollers the odd flashes of some good but widely distributed Midwest beer start popping up. Bells, Great Lakes, Goose Island some others. Then finally, nirvana arrives. New Glarus, Oscars, Viking, Central Waters and the penultimate, the holy grail of WI beers . . .
Lake Louie, 4 different beers in growlers, well refrigerated and ready for consumption for the ridiculous price of $7.50 each !
After recovering from seeing these a door in the middle of the cooller wall is noticed. I slip in to further beer mecca with a wall of some single beers and some others not on the shelf. Crowded but well laid out cooler.

These folks know how to store beer, only advice is to turn down the flourescents a bit and add some more singles to the rack.
Great place. If you go to Mad-town, beer hunting this is Number 2 place behind Great Dane for a must stop. (1,192 characters)

Photo of Chaz
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Stopped in for a visit while in town to take the Capital tour.

The first thing I noticed was how thoughtfully laid-out and easily navigable the store is, as well as how spacious it seemed.

It hardly took a moment to find the beer, as there were floor stackers of Capital cans placed near the entry and a little further in at the checkstand (alongside a stacker of the new Horny Goat bottles). I almost became distracted by a cheese and deli section in the northwest corner of the store before seeing a the first cooler door in the cold box which was loaded with mainly import singles (Drie Fonteinen and Samuel Smiths among others). A little further along I came across two doors with Wisconsin micro and Midwest craft singles, unsurprisingly featuring a good deal of New Glarus (aside: when I checked out I quizzed the folks at the counter as to whether Iced Barleywine might be around, and they were able to suggest a retailer that might still have it. Further conversation revolved around the Berliner Weiss, convincing me that these folks were serious if not downright passionate about their beer!)

As I was sorting through the singles I missed the empty six-pack cartons (folded in a clear lexan file holder mounted about 5' high along the cold box), but as I would be buying more than 1 or 2 sixes I simply walked into the cold box/"beer cave" and picked out an empty case with which to haul my beer - and keep it from rattling around in the trunk.

I saw a few imports as well as the Usual Suspects (Stone, DFH, Dale's) that we don't get in the Twin Cities market, but I was mainly here for Lake Louie and O'so.

Prices were as good if not better than I'd expected, and overall this was an excellent shopping experience. (1,731 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 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)

Photo of beerinator
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

I waited here in line for my Great Taste tickets. So I spent at least an hour and a half looking at the outside of this building before I started shopping. They have a nice parking lot, the grass seems well taken care of, and they even had a picnic table and chairs on the side (probably for smoking employees).

Eventually I got inside where it was warm.

The local selection is great. All of their products are kept cold. You could buy beers by the six pack and they had a single's wall that was deep inside a walk-in cooler.

I found some Unibroue 2004 in the singles wall. Steve's was out of the New Glarus unplugged line, but they seem to have had all of the other New Glarus products. They also had some Founder's Breakfast Stout which I haven't seen anywhere else.

The service was more than helpful, and a pleasure to be around. I'm sure I'll stop here again, mostly because of it's convienence, but also because of it's selection and service. (959 characters)

Photo of zeff80
4.45/5  rDev +3%

Steve's is a truly great beer store in Madison. They carry tons of great Wisconsin beers, New Glarus, Capital, Furthermore, Ale Asylum, and more. Plenty of Stone, Founders and Dogfish Head. The vast majority of the beer is in the wall of coolers. Most of the breweries are available for singles with a few notable exceptions (like Tyranena, Founders and Central Waters). The service was great. I was searching for Old Ales and Barleywines for a tasting and they answered my questions very thoroughly. Plus, the care that they took to pack up all my beer was exceptional. I haven't consumed much of what I purchased so far but the quality seems great. (650 characters)

Photo of cbutova
4.37/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75

Recommended as the bottle shop to stop in by a friend-of-a-friend from Madison. Stopped in here on the way out of town during a road trip from Chicago to Decorah, IA. Did not get to go to any other bottle shops in Madison but this place had a great selection. I found all of the New Glarus fruit beer 750mls and most of their regulars. I also got some Central Waters beers and other random WI locals of which there were many. Be sure to look in the walk-in cooler as I found a few bombers in there that were some of the best bottles I found during an 8000 mile road trip around the US. Prices were great compared to the East Coast cities, which was a big plus for me. I was also impressed by the fact that almost all of the beer was in the fridge, perfect since I had to put it into a cooler anyways. All around great bottle shop if you are looking for some quality brews. (872 characters)

Photo of Beertracker
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

Steve's Liquor is located at the intersection of Junction Rd. & Mineral Point Rd. which is easily found from W. Beltline Hwy. I was staying at a nearby hotel and decided to stop by for some road beers on the way home from the Great Taste of the Midwest. Steve's has an outstanding selection of local/regional microbrews including, but not limited to Ale Asylum, Capital, Lakefront, Lake Louie, New Glarus, Sprecher, Tyranena, Viking, and they even had meads from White Winter and cider & perry from AEppelTreow. In addition, I found seasonal & specialties from other notable micro's including Bear Republic, Bell's, Goose Island, & Three Floyds. The import selection isn't bad, but it doesn't seem to be their main focus. The place is clean and easy to navigate, minus the occasional display located mid-isle. They have about 16-20 doors devoted to good beer with a walk-in cooler that customers can browse through for cases. Steve's is a definite stop for the beer thirsty traveler. Be certain to ask for Jan, The Baroness of Beer!

CHEERS! Beertracker (1,053 characters)

Photo of jenitivecase
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

Visited on a trip to Madison this weekend.

Pleasantly surprised to see an entire wall of coolers devoted to beer. Great selection of stuff that's not available in KS, so that was definitely a plus; that said, points get knocked down a little bit simply because Steve's fails to stock some of the good stuff that is available in KS. Overall, though, great selection.

Staff was knowledgeable and eager to help. When making my selections, the workers were able to offer intelligent commentary on various beers, demonstrating a high level of personal experience. They were also willing to break down six-packs to allow me to buy single bottles, which was greatly appreciated.

Ambiance was great - be sure to check out the selection of cheeses, and keep an eye out for in-store wine samples. Overall, a great experience - if I lived in Madison, this would definitely be my go-to store. (883 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 bditty187
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

Steve's Liquor keeps all of their beer in a cooler, rock on! The store seems heavy on wine but, fear not, there is lots of beer. They have a very good selection of beer… everything from unique, outstanding imports to wonderful craft beers to regional beers to macro beers. The staff is helpful and friendly. The prices didn’t seem too bad. Well worth a visit. I hope I make it back… (385 characters)

Photo of cokes
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

My personal pick in Madison. Billed more as a wine store, the focus is equally on beer.
Kind staff is attentive and as well versed as any in the area. They know their stuff and love talking about it.
All the usual WI suspects can be found here. Most regional stuff too. Only place in Madison to carry Kzoo's/Bells entire line (both Steve's Locations).
You'll find me back in the cooler at the singles more often than not. Lots of goodies.
Make sure you don't leave without picking up at least one growler of Lake Louie, as Steve's is one of the few places its found.

Update, early 2004. This store was briefly surpassed by its University Ave counterpart. No longer. Recent months have seen a huge influx of new and exciting beers. This is the premier joint in Madison. Stop here. (788 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)

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