RSVP Discount Beverage & Redemption Center

Not Rated.
   No picture uploaded.
   Have one? Upload it now.
BA SCORE
88
very good

57 Ratings
Ratings: 57
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: n/a
[ Store ]

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

view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 57 | Reviews: 41 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jamvt
5/5  rDev +28.9%

Photo of mk_ultra
5/5  rDev +28.9%

Photo of bitterliving
4.65/5  rDev +19.8%

Just got of the phone with these folks, and have to say the time they took looking for items over the phone was more than patient.
Without finding what I was looking for, Chris took my name and # to call me back when it arrives.

Two hours later, he calls back to ask how many they can hold for me, as it is coming in.

I've always had good service and selection when I've visited the store.
The place definitely doesn't shine when it comes to the looks department, but for pretty descent service and some of the best selection around the area (wine too) they seem to be the ticket when I head in that area.

Photo of liddytime
4.65/5  rDev +19.8%

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!

Photo of jzeilinger
4.5/5  rDev +16%

I travel all the time and when I'm in Maine, I have made this location a regular stop of mine. The store is predominantly liquor and wine, but the SMALL beer selection they have (when compared to the rest of the inventory) is very HIGH quality. I'd much rather have a more concentrated selection of high quality brews as opposed to a huge selection of crap. I've found RSVP's prices to be the BEST I've seen in the seven states I travel in. If you stop in, ask for Bill. Bill knows his beer, I love talking to this guy every time I come in because I learn something new every time. How many places can you go and buy DFH 120 at the same or just about the same price as what you would pay for in DE? I rely on Bill to give me recommendations for some new brews I've never tried before - he's been bang on. Business travelers, seek this place out. Locals who have never been here, pull your head out of the sand!!

Photo of joepais
4.5/5  rDev +16%

I was in looking for a special bottle for Secret Santa BIF. I know it was available in the state of Maine but haven't seen for a while. Sure enough it was there, as well as a great selection of Belgians and other imports. A large selection of American craft brews that was available in the state. They had the new Allagash collaboration as well as most of the other local Maine brews. The place was well laid out and the clerks were knowledgeable. The prices on the bottles were reasonable as well. I most defiantly be back when I get to Portland again

Photo of MaineBeerMan
4.5/5  rDev +16%

RSVP Discount Beverage & Redemption is one of the best places to buy quality beers here in Portland. The selection is huge, especially Maine and New England beers, with a good mix of others from around the U.S. and some quality imports.
The staff is always willing to help, I have gone in before looking for a case of something when only singles or six packs were out front and they will gladly check the walk in refrigerator for what you want. If you don't see something ask, they might have it out back or be able to get it.
The prices here are the best in town, bar none, although and the selection is one of the best. Stop in here if you are in Portland looking for local brews!

Photo of Reds76
4.4/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of smauretti
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%

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.

Photo of blackburnrovers
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%

Agree with the previous reviewer. I've lived in Portland for over 12 years and the place has changed for the better over the past couple of years since the new owners arrived. The store used to have bad lighting, a "very used" floor, etc, but things have slowly changed and it is more inviting. For starters, the place is brighter, a new floor has been installed, and racks have been moved making it easier to get around.

More importantly, the beer selection has improved. Sure, you can always get almost every Maine micro produced in bottles, but the import and "out of state" micro selection has greatly expanded. This is due in part to two new distributors in the state carrying out out of state micros and imports.

R.S.V.P. has jumped on this with an expanded "beer geek" rack which you can't miss on the way to the cooler doors in the rear of the store. Some of these offerings as well as most Maine micros can be ordered by keg through the store.

They have also recently put up a "Kappy's Route 1" scrolling sign outside the store announcing beer, wine, and booze specials.

I'm not a wine or booze aficionado, but they do have a large wine and booze selection.

Well worth a stop if you're in Portland and searching for a Maine micro, out-of-state micro, or funky import to take home.

Photo of lionskull
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Resuin
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of meehandennis
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of DrStiffington
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of ToasterChef
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%

I go to RSVP for two reasons; first, it's partnered with a redemption center and I like turning empties into full beers; second, the selection is the best in the area. Today was the first time I wanted a beer that is available in Maine that RSVP didn't have (they were sold out). They have beers that you can't find elsewhere in Portland. The beers are intelligently organized by brewery which makes for easy browsing. The coolers a full of local beers, popular micros (Magic Hat, Harpoon, Sam Adams, etc.) and macros and all of the international beers and other micros are stored upright and warm. There is also a wide selection of wines, liquor, soda and snack food.

Where RSVP is severely lacking is in its customer service. There were two staff members that I interacted with today. One is well known to me as a complete grump and a person to avoid at all costs (more on her later), so the first person I approached was the other employee (I approached her even though her register had a closed sign, I dread the grumpy employee that much). I asked employee #2 if there were any bottles of Cadillac Mtn Stout out back, as there were none of the shelves. She didn't believe me at first and had to go look on the shelves for the beer. While she was scanning the international shelves, I politely showed her where they were supposed to be in the domestic area. She then asked if it was a six pack. I told her it was a 22 oz bottle I was looking for. She then went and looked in the store room, returning a few minutes later empty handed. Her explanation was "I didn't see any," and I had to suggest that I try back later. That was the extent of my interaction with employee #1. She's obviously not the beer person at RSVP. I'll assume that their beer guy was not working that day, but perhaps she just didn't bother offering to put me in touch with him.

Now, the checkout process. The only open register was manned by the grumpy employee. This woman would make the grim reaper look like a fun guy. She never smiles, never says please or thank you, and until today, never suggested I have a nice day. I wasn't to impressed with her lackluster suggestion though. Her delivery is so rote and monotone, it's as if she were reciting the active ingredients of cough medicine. Normally, she just snaps "ID" without looking up at me and informs me of the price of my beers--nothing else. Her demeanor is so off-putting, I dread having to deal with her. But the selection of RSVP is so good, I'll keep going there, and keep hoping that another register is open.

UPDATE 1.29.10
The service at RSVP has gotten much better over the past 6 months. The cashiers are friendlier and there are multiple beer folks who will help you make informed selections. It's vastly improved.

Photo of Pamola
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%

I drop by RSVP every time I head back to Maine to visit the rents. I usually go in with a 60 dollar budget and walk out with a wine box brimming with bombers and 750s, and maybe a couple 6 packs as well. In my opinion this is the best beer store in maine by leaps and bounds. The local selection is exhaustive (most recent maine additions being the shipyard big beers, stone coast 1260, allagash collaboration, geary's wee heavy, and more) and they have an entire aisle devoted to euro singletons from every country on the continent. It's true the service isn't incredible. They have one older guy who knows beer cold. If you can find him, all your questions will be answered.

One of my favorite parts of this store is the gritty's mini kegs. 20 bucks for a little barrel of best bitter always makes me happy.

Check this place out. I have no idea how someone could be disappointed by what they have to offer.

Photo of ericj551
4.15/5  rDev +7%

I only just heard about RSVP on Beer Advocate when I was looking for a retail location to get six Maine Brewers Festival tickets. I was not interested in paying $6 per ticket and we were headed that way anyway so I stopped by. From the outside it looks like an everyday liquor store and even inside I was skeptical until I got into the back where the beer is. There warm section was awesome, it looked like they had almost everything that I know of that is distributed to Maine. They even had some Maine brews that I had not seen at Tulley's, my usual beer store.

Price was another big plus, some bombers were significantly cheaper than I was expecting. The service was mostly MIA, I'm sure I could have gotten questions answered if I had any but it seemed like the only person in the store besides us was the cashier. I will definitely be back, especially when I'm on my way to the Great Lost Bear.

Photo of berley31
4.15/5  rDev +7%

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.

Photo of UncleJimbo
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%

This store is located outside town, on Forest Ave. not far from Rt. 9. The interior is like a warehouse with a lot of beer, wine, and liquor. The cashier is near the front of the store surrounded by cigarettes, lottery tickets, and some playboy magazines.

The beer selection is good, and like other liquor stores in the area, the emphasis is on Maine beer. However, there was also a decent selection of beers from outside Maine (Unibroue, some English, some German selections). Overall, probably as good a selection as Downeast Beverage Co., but not as big on customer service or atmosphere.

Definitely worth a stop on your way to or from the Great Lost Bear, or on your way to I-95.

Photo of mtnbikerpa
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%

I visited this local liquor store while on vacation. I was not to impressed with the staff, they were not very helpful. But there were a number of long isles stocked nicely with craft beers. A lot of Maine beers available, Sea dog, Seabago, Bar Harbor Brewing, Allagash, Atlantic Brewing Company. Also Weyerbacher, Stone, BrewDog, Dogfish head, Flying Dog, Victory and a lot of German Imports. Most seasonals seemed to be fresh. I was able to get a good supply of Cadillac Mountain Stout which is always a favorite of mine when visiting Maine.

Photo of asherchase
4.04/5  rDev +4.1%

Photo of John_M
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

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.

Photo of deltatauhobbit
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Can't believe I've forgotten to review this place.

Certainly one of the best beer locations to buy from if you're in the Portland area, I've been able to get some real gems here, such as 1260 Triple IPA, Black Albert and could have gotten Black Ops if I had wanted to.

One of the better selections around too, guess it helps that they have the room for it too. Place is like a warehouse, while the looks have much to left to desire, it's really what's inside that counts. Parking is kinda hectic since it's on Forest Ave with a good amount of traffic, so be careful.

As a warning, if you are from out of state you have to be older than 25, pretty weird ayuh!

Photo of lou50rp
4/5  rDev +3.1%

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).

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
RSVP Discount Beverage & Redemption Center in Portland, ME
88 out of 100 based on 57 ratings.