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Riley's Wines of the World

Not Rated.
Riley's Wines of the WorldRiley's Wines of the World
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

72 Ratings
Ratings: 72
Reviews: 54
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: n/a
[ Store ]

402 W Gorham St
Madison, Wisconsin, 53703-2004
United States
phone: (608) 257-0400

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @rileyswow

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: cokes)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 72 | Reviews: 54 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Shluffy
4.75/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of aforbes10
4.65/5  rDev +13.4%

On the tail end of our wedding anniversary trip to Wisconsin, I was determined to find a place where i could find all the top WI beers to take home with me. We found this place while walking down State Street on Sunday and walked around town for an hour until it opened. I am VERY glad we waited. They had everything i was looking for...Bitter Woman from Hell, Viking Big Swede, New Glarus Unplugged series, Central Waters, etc. A helpful staffer pointed out some other locals that i might like too so i grabbed them as well (if he's a BA and reads this, thanks dude, you were very cool!). Not too pricey and a 10% discount on the mix-a-sixer cooler. nice.

Also should mention that this place had one of the finest selections of beers in general that i've ever seen. I was only in the market for WI beers but i could have taken home 3 Floyds (Rabid Rabbit, Gumballhead), Dogfish (WWStout, 120 min, Raison D'extra, Golden Shower, Fort, etc..), Bells (i saw the wheat series there), Lagunitus, Rogue. too many to name. in fact, maybe i would have bought some of these but some crazy guy was following me around the store because i told him i'd buy him a Rockstar Energy Drink to keep him off the drugs and he wouldn't take money instead because "he doesn't drink that alcohol". Of course later he hit me up for $2 for his "alcoholic girlfriend".

If i go back to Madison i'm coming here again.

Photo of jegross2
4.51/5  rDev +10%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Riley's is great for three reasons:

1) Selection. They have almost every beer you could want to drink that is sold in the state of Wisconsin.

2) Quality. Rileys not only has a lot of beer, they have a lot of GREAT beer. Impossible not to find something new and interesting to try there.

3) Holding beer for me. I've bought a lot of beer from Rileys over the past 18 months, and a lot of it has to do with not only the helpfulness of their beer guys, but also their willingness to hold beers for me. I'd never been able to try CBS if not for the help of Rileys, and I am very excited for the Oak Aged Old Rasputin they're going to hold for me!

Riley's is the priciest of the quality beer selection places in Madison (the other two being Woodman's and Steve's), but they are not any more pricey than your average corner-liquor store. Making the trip to Riley's is certainly worth browsing their selection, getting their beer help, and most importantly, reserving those rare releases!

Photo of Sunn
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of Gotti311
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of bpfrush
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of Ri0
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of wardough
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Dropped in there a few weeks back when I was visiting Madison and the university. I was happy from the moment that I walked into the store. The staff was very helpful in directing me and very knowledgeable on their products. Found loads of New Glarus stuff (Mecca for me), including their Unplugged series. Even found 3 Floyds Anniversary X and Gumball, and some Founder's products (yet another Mecca). Good selection of Midwestern beers. Good place to go. There was waaay too much in the store for me to bring back in my suitcase. Warrants another trip to Madison.

Photo of MarcatGSB
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%

Another highly recommended stop on your way through Madison. We went to Woodman's first, and stocked up on some bombers of FFF, and some four packs of DFH Burton Baton, but saved some money in our wallets to head over to Riley's, and are glad we did.

The back wall is a large cooler, with a great selection of beers from Wisconsin and abound. The main reason for stopping at Riley's for the slim hope of scoring some Central Waters Peruvian Morning, and sure enough, they had it. I had never tried to beer, but read alot about it, and glad I picked up a few four packs. They had more of the limited releases from Tyranena, Central Waters, New Glarus, and Ale Asylum than Woodman's did, and a better selection of bombers and singles. They stocked quite a few (maybe 8-12) varieties of Jolly Pumpkin, which I was happily surprised with. Also some of the limited release DFH (Namaste, Theobroma, WWS, etc).

Woodman's is definitely cheaper, but Riley's will have some things that Woodman's does not. I would suggest stopping at both, and get the best of both worlds.

Photo of johnkale
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%

This is, thankfully, my local liquor store (this unfortunately means I live pretty close to State Street). Excellent selection of bombers and individual bottles, not enough space to provide the six-pack selection I would like. Staff is friendly, though not overly attentive, but in the end I tend to enjoy shopping without too much intervention. Everyone there is generally good at answering any questions I might have. Pricing is typical for Madison, certainly cheaper than my corner store. There are occasional deals, but generally on middling beer, I have yet to find a real steal in their clearance section.

Additionally, as the name implies, they have an excellent wine selection, especially from more obscure appellations, and they have some great top shelf liquor. Considering that its only a six block walk to this place, I can't think of a much better place to go beer shopping.

Photo of MilwaukeeCrusher
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%

This is probably one of the better stops in Madison if you want to get high end micros. Their service is top notch and the place really uses their space well considering their size. Pretty much everything is there you can get, with the exclusion of maybe some lesser or lower demand stuff. If something comes out new, this is a place to go and get it. Staff is courteous and knows quite a bit about beer. Will be back again, and probably would be more often if parking wasn't a pain and all the wild college traffic in the area.

Photo of BeerBelcher
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%

This is one of the best liquor stores I have ever shopped. WI is a great state for liquor stores (far better selection than many other states I've shopped), and this is one of the top couple in the state, if not #1. There are a lot of beers in WI that don't make it out of state, and Riley's has all those plus many others I've not seen elsewhere. A giant selection, big coolers, lots of singles for mixed 6-ers, a knowledgeable staff - this place pretty much has it all. Throw in a downtown location convenient to other places in Madison you'd like to visit and you've pretty much got anything you could want in a liquor store.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%

The first time I pulled into town and drove past Riley's I assumed that it wasn't worth a visit as it seemed like a college beer shop. Boy was I wrong! I drove for miles in all directions looking for a place that sold single bottles and came up pretty dry. Oddly, the other place right near where I was staying (Steve's Wines?) also had a good selection, but I didn't go there at first either. Finally, on about my third trip to Madison, I stopped in at Riley's just to see if they had anything that I'd missed. I started with the coolers of six-packs along the back wall and was impressed, but still left wanting, and then I found the bank of coolers on the east wall loaded with single bottles! Beer nirvana! I took home $80 worth and could easily have done that three times over. They have a great selection of imports, and an excellent selection of local beers! So don't be fooled by the surrounding campus and give it a shot. It's without a doubt the best selection of single bottles in the area!

Photo of AmberMan22
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%

Really nice store, well laid out and labeled. Even better now that it's got Brickhouse BBQ right next door. The store is well lit and organized sensibly.

The staff are friendly and helpful, but only if you go looking for help. I don't really expect anyone to come up and ask me if I need help, so I don't really mind it.
Actually, come to think of it, a guy told me there was a seperate fridge for Belgians...I need to go back for that.

Selection is very solid. Tons of WI local brews (Tyranena, New Glarus, Ale Asylum are all great, among others), and plenty of other top-notch domestics. Foreign beer section isn't too bad, and I haven't even gotten to look at the Belgian aisle yet. Damn, that's making my mouth water.

Prices are all very reasonable, pretty much as good as or better than you'll find anywhere in Madison. Pair that with their wide selection, and we have a winner.

Photo of blackie
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%

quality: I've never had a beer here that seemed to be either light struck or past its date.

service: I've never really had to ask many questions here, but most of the guys seem to know their product well.

selection: Great selection, especially for Wisconsin and Midwestern goodies. Great selection of six packs of Lake Louie, Capital, Central Waters, and New Glarus...and plenty of others that I could never recall. Nice rotating singles selection as well, well representing the wonderful Wisco breweries.

Photo of CuriousMonk
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

A gem in downtown Madison right off the UW campus. I heard about this place through other beer seller who suggested that I stop by this place for 3F bombers. This place sold all the New Glarus beers among the many microbreweries of Wisconsin. They also sold an arsenal of Mikkeller, 3F, Stillwater, and Dark Horse beers. This place is a little disorganized, but still you found the good stuff if you look long and hard enough. Friendly service but didn't come to you while looking at the beers. Just am glad I was able to buy a bunch of New Glarus and 3Fs here due to the extremely limited distribution!

Photo of Grinder
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%

WOW - they are correct when they say it's bigger then it looks. Problem is that 95% of the place is wine.

I would think they would have MORE beer being so close to campus.

A decent enough collection of craft and macro brews. A lot of local Wisconsin microbrews that can be found at most good liqueur stores.

So - yea - good place for craft beer . . .but there are better.

The help was very helpful as I needed a cheep church key and and really did not want to buy a cheap silver sharp one that opens cans (do they still make cans that need and opener like that?).

He must have seen me lamenting over the options and found an old one. SWEET!!!

Photo of terrabyte
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%

I don't get downtown much, so I've been waiting patiently to stop here for some time.

The worst thing about the place is the parking. There are about 6 spots in their parking lot, worth their weight in gold (thus filled), but what can you expect of a store downtown. It's more than some of the nearby locations could say.

I had beer tunnel vision, so wasn't even aware of what else they carried beside beer. They had about 10 coolers of craft-brewed 6 packs. Just as much space for more 6-packs (warm), and then 1 cooler for imported singles, and 2 coolers of American singles.

I stocked up on every single I needed that Woodman's doesn't carry, and walked out with 24 bottles. (I had to hold myself back) They even had Central Waters singles - something that Steve's Liquor Stores won't do to their 6-packs.

Definately a great place to get a wide variety of beer, slightly more expensive.

Photo of crossovert
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

This is a great shop in Madison, right net to Brickhouse BBQ.

The craft is split up into singles which is great, too bad I was broke when I went in and just got 1 can of 8 Bit Pale ale.

A lot of shelton beers are represented including 14.99 bottles of Mikkeller weasel and those expensive as all fuck Italian beers.

Most of the beer was in the coolers except the big high abv brews and some seasonals. I didn't even get to the 6 pack area. This place probably has everything distributed to Madison giving it a pretty wide selection.

The service is pretty good too. A great store.

Photo of ssimpson89
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of TX-Badger
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of egrace84
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of 510a
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of Stevedore
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of s_wit
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

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Riley's Wines of the World in Madison, WI
92 out of 100 based on 72 ratings.