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RSVP Discount Beverage & Redemption Center

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BA SCORE
87
very good

51 Ratings
Ratings: 51
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 16.32%
[ Store ]

887 Forest Ave
Portland, Maine, 04103-4107
United States
phone: (207) 773-8808

view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
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(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 51 | Reviews: 41 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by berley31:
Photo of berley31
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%

Stopped by on a recent trip to Portland, the day after pubcrawling in the Old Port area to try a bunch of Maine craft beers. I had read about RSVP's service before we went and was a little apprehensive, but all I can say is that they were friendly when we were there... one gentleman in particular even asked how we were making out... twice! The cashier was also very helpful even though we were checking out many singles and the prices weren't coming up. Good beer selection, with lots of Maine beers, which is why we were there, but a very good selection of Belgians as well. Overall I was very pleased with RSVP Liquor.

Update 11/09 - Back for a second trip, selection was still great, and the people waiting on us were extremely helpful and kind.

berley31, Jun 18, 2009
More User Reviews:
Photo of meehandennis
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

meehandennis, Saturday at 04:23 PM
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4.04/5  rDev +4.7%

asherchase, Oct 04, 2014
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3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

ChrisinRI, Sep 01, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

Rochefort10nh, Jul 22, 2014
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4/5  rDev +3.6%

ezchaos, Jul 04, 2014
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5/5  rDev +29.5%

mk_ultra, Jun 19, 2014
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5/5  rDev +29.5%

jamvt, May 19, 2014
Photo of Resuin
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

Resuin, Mar 16, 2014
Photo of hockeypuck
4/5  rDev +3.6%

hockeypuck, Jan 01, 2014
Photo of cnwillis31
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

cnwillis31, Nov 10, 2013
Photo of johnnnniee
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%

I stopped in here last week while working out of town. I’m a little surprised about the low ratings from previous reviewers, but then again I had no issues with my out of state ID because I’m a bit older. On forest st a bit out of the center of Portland a bit past the Bear with ample parking. Feels like an open warehouse with a row of cold beer coolers filling the back wall of the store. Macro’s well yea they have them, but a huge focus on craft beer with a focus on Maine as usual. Off to the far right hand side of the store is a long warm isle with an incredible selection of craft beer. Respectable imported selection but more domestic with a focus on ME brews. Employee sent to straighten out the shelves said hi to me but never asked if she could assist me. Nice selection. decent prices, if I were in town again I wouldn’t hesitate to stop in again. .

johnnnniee, Jun 16, 2013
Photo of spence3208
2.97/5  rDev -23.1%

Heard this was to place to go if in portland area. so I ventured in. found a decent amount of craft beer offerings. the store is a typical bottle store with dim lighting and cardboard displays. my buddy had a hard time with buying beer because he had a NH ID he is (24) strange issue, but other then that was a OK experience. cant say id make the trek to go again.

spence3208, Jun 07, 2013
Photo of PlinyTheKid
1.94/5  rDev -49.7%

This place blows. To be honest, it's filthy, it's unorganized, as the staff is beyond rude to their customers. They will not sell to you unless you are over 25 on ID. Even if you are associated with the person under 25, they will not sell to you either. They denied service to us, even though one person from our party had a legitimate 22 year old ID, and restricted everyone else from tr group from making their own purchases. The cashier was ignorant, beyond rude. Don't bother. Go to Beer Cellar down the street instead.

Also, even from Los Angeles, this place had nothing interesting.

PlinyTheKid, Jun 24, 2012
Photo of GarthDanielson
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%

Always heard ads for this place on the Maine radio stations, and was driving through Portland on our way home so we figured we'd stop by. If you are in the area and specifically looking for Maine beers, this is a good place to look. We were able to score a 6er of the newest Baxter release at the time, as well as some bombers from Rising Tide and some Allagash not normally available in NH or Mass. The place is your typical liquor store, with wine and booze sections along with the beer. The beer consists of a wall of coolers, as well as two aisles of bottles. On top of that, there are some end caps on the aisles, and a couple of random displays throughout the store that all have beer, so you really have to do some searching/exploring. That being said, there are some solid beers available here, both US and imports. On top of the Maine beers, we were able to score a variety of Mikkeller brews. The staff doesn't roam from behind the register from what we saw, but they were friendly enough. They have snacks and what not available, mostly chips and jerkey, which is typical of a liquor store. We are going to try to visit some of Portland's other stores, but it's good to know RSVP is solid for when we need some decent brews.

GarthDanielson, May 31, 2012
Photo of JoRado
2.78/5  rDev -28%

I was visiting from the Midwest and RSVP was recommended a place to go to if I wanted to bring home some beers that I couldn't get back home.

I came here with three of my friends, two of which have lived in Maine for a couple years, the third was on vacation with me. The service saw me, but didn't greet me and allowed me to browse their selection without asking if I needed help. For some this may have seemed rude, but I actually prefer it that way.

I ended up getting to the checkout with about four bombers of various beer, and they refused to sell them to me because I was only 24 and had an out of state ID. Even though everyone of my friends that were there with me were 25 or older, and two of them were Maine residents with Maine ID's.

They then almost refused to sell anything to my friends because I was in the store with them! So I quickly left and waited in the car outside. I ended up texting my friends from the car so they could buy my beers I had to put back, but that was even hard to do because the employees wouldn't allow them to buy what I had picked out.

In the end they let that slide and I got my beer.

Overall a very annoying experience.

JoRado, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of kingcrowing
2.16/5  rDev -44%

Came in here on my way to Eb's - I've been to Down East Beverage a few times and really liked it but I thought I'd check this place out.

Overall their craft selection was fairly small with only a few things of interest - they had 3F Oude Geueze in 375s which I didn't see at Down East (although if I asked they may have had some), and WWS for a decent price.

I ended up grabbing those two and a Fantome - three bottles for roughly $35, and I was refused sale because I didn't have a Maine ID. I had both a Vermont ID and a federally issued passport and they still refused. This was totally crazy to me and I found the manager to be rather unpleasant about the situation.

I will not return in the future, Down East has a much higher quality selection and their service was top notch.

kingcrowing, Aug 28, 2011
Photo of silentjay
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%

Asked after I toured Allagash where I could find a good selection of beer in the general area, was pointed to this store by both a tour guide and a guest.

Looks very slummy from the outside, and had a less-than-desirable variety of clientele coming and going as I pulled up. Walked in, and the inside was a bit better than my first impressions from the outside, but not too much. Amply lit, and decently laid-out, though it reminded me of a discount grocery store.

No one approached me to help as I dissected their selection for a while, but I like it that way. cashier was friendly enough and they boxed my purchase nicely.

selection was good. found many products I cant get in MA and spent a decent amount. Found many products that I can get in MA that were priced at a dollar or two cheaper than I can get it here.

Would visit again next time I'm in the area. Though it looks shady from the outside, the beers they offer are worth the visit. the also had a SA Utopias in a glass case for $30 less than I bought mine for.... I almost bought that too.

silentjay, Jul 10, 2011
Photo of John_M
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%

Stopped by the first time this afternoon. This place is just great.

From the outside, the place looks like it was a Jiffy Lube in a past life, but no matter...

Upon going inside, RSVP is pretty sizeable, with a good size wine selection to the right and a nice liquor selection to the left. The beer selection is in the back, and is most impressive. Aside from generally having a good selection of craft and imports, there is a very nice separate area of local beers with a number of limited, hard to find local items I've seen no place else. On this particular day I was looking for stuff from the Maine Beer company, and I was not disappointed. I was able to purchase the current line-up, as well as a number of other hard to find (at least for me) local beers.

As for service, shrug... it's not that kind of a store. Service was pretty much non-existent, though I assume the folks up front could have answered any question I had. Frankly, I didn't require a whole lot of assistance, and so I could care less about the service here. The selection was the only thing that mattered to me, and in that respect this place is top shelf. An absolute gem in Portland... I'll definitely be back.

John_M, May 22, 2011
Photo of liddytime
4.65/5  rDev +20.5%

I was a bit hesitant to venture up to RSVP with some of the negative reviews, but in Maine, it is one a the few choices for quality hard to find beers.

While the ambience would never be mistaken for a Four Seasons hotel... HEY!? ... Whadd'ya want?!? It's a liquor store for Pete's sake!

Some reviewers have commented negatively on the service. I was pleased to find the complete opposite! I was approached by not one, but two employees who were incredibly helpful assisting me in picking out Pilsners for my weekend beer-tasting. They were very friendly and very informative ( and I know a s*itload about beer!)

The selection was as good as it gets for Maine and the prices were very reasonable.

Don't give them grief about their ID policy either. I'm sure it's not them, it's the mega-anal state of Maine's policies!

liddytime, Jan 08, 2011
Photo of gueuzeonhigh
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%

This store runs frequent advertisements on the radio. Even so I've driven by it from time to time. RSVP carries a good beer selection for Maine. From my casual experience patronizing various beer sellers dotted up and down the eastern states of the US of A, RSVP's beer selection is average but probably stellar for Maine. Wide and varied beer distribution up into Maine is likely harrowed by low demand, high tributes, rules and regs, you name it.

I also patronize two other stores in the greater Portland Maine area that sell craft brews. RSVP probably has the better selection but it's not so outstanding that I'd go out of my way to shop there.

I didn't bother to review their other offerings- looks like a goodly selection of wines.

I did not require assistance so I can't comment on the store's help.

In the end I'm glad for the existence of any channels through which I can obtain quality craft brewed beer.

gueuzeonhigh, Nov 20, 2010
Photo of gtn80
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%

RSVP is my go to bottle shop in Portland. First the good part. They have a great selection of continental beer, especially German and Belgian. They also have a great selection of craft beer, especially the local and New Englad scene. Most is warm, but they do put a bunch of the bigger micros and cases of micros in the coolers.

The bad is the service and atmosphere. The place is a pretty dumpy warehouse feel. The service is exactly that, serviceable. I usually only interact with the cashiers, and they are adequate. The problem is the staff has no clue about beer, but I don't really care about that. I know what I want going in, but if you like to ask alot of questions, this isn't the place for you.

gtn80, Nov 12, 2010
Photo of twelvsies
4/5  rDev +3.6%

RSVP Liquors, conveniently located just up Forest Ave north of I-295. A pretty standard liquor-mart style store, big-ish, but with a nice selection of beer. A wall of coolers holding six packs, growlers, etc. A good showing of local beers, as with most places in Portland, and also a good deal of variety from around the country, essentially whatever is available here. Solid showing of Belgians as well, and usually a large stock of said items. Where some smaller shops get a case or two of something like Red Race for example, RSVP will have a whole stack. So, if there's something you can't find, it's worth a trip to see if it's in. That being said, there's really not a lot of "geeky" selection here, or at least as far as I can tell. I am only a semi-regular customer, so maybe befriending the beer guy would help, but I have not met this person. The staff I have encountered have been friendly. Big store = low prices, which is good. Definitely a spot to check out in Portland.

twelvsies, Oct 04, 2010
Photo of lou50rp
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Stopped in today 8-7 to but a locally distilled gin, and checked out the beer selection. Found a good selection of locals and out-of-state microbrews. Lot of 12 packs with good prices. When I am in Portland, it will be scheduled stop from now on.
I like the ample parking and easy access. (its only a couple miles from the interstate and not far up the avenue from the Great Lost Bear and Maine Beer Supply) Brewing supplies, packaged beer and lunch with in a mile. Can't beat that.
Staff was friendly, (only encountered at the check-out).
The prices for all my purchases were good (except for the taxes and deposits).

lou50rp, Aug 08, 2010
Photo of smauretti
4.35/5  rDev +12.7%

Stopped in at RSVP on 7/16/10 and 7/24/10 and enjoyed the selection of brews available. I found many beers that are not available back home in Massachusetts. Picked up some Mikkellers, Bar Harbor Cadillac Stout, Maine Beer Company Zoe, Maine Beer Company Peeper's, Stone's 14th Anniversary, Sebago Single Batch as well some other great selections.

Service was good on both occasions and found associates that were knowledgeable about the beer available.

RSVP has a great craft beer selection that was worth the stop on the way through Portland.

Put this one on your list as a must do if in the area.

smauretti, Jul 29, 2010
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RSVP Discount Beverage & Redemption Center in Portland, ME
87 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.