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Binny's Beverage Depot - River North

Not Rated.
Binny's Beverage Depot - River NorthBinny's Beverage Depot - River North
BA SCORE
88
very good

54 Ratings
Ratings: 54
Reviews: 42
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 9.02%
[ Store ]

213 W Grand Ave
Chicago, Illinois, 60654-7673
United States
phone: (312) 332-0012

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @binnysbev

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: AudioGilz)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 54 | Reviews: 42 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by JNewbs:
Photo of JNewbs
3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Went here at the recommendation of other BAs when I queried on where I should go in downtown Chi-town.

My first impression was that this is a wine store, or maybe a liquor store. Beer is the red headed step child here.

When I found the beer I rejoiced. The selection was fairly large, especially the Beglian aisle. I was a little diappointed that they offerings for Three Floyds were so limited. They had Alpha King and Arctic Panzer Wolf, that was it. Also picked up some Ommegang Abbey Ale in 12 oz bottles, which I usually can't find. They had all the Hoppin Frog you would want, including Barrel Aged BORIS and also DORIS. Happy to see that, being an Akron, OH boy.

Prices seemed a bit steeper than I anticipated on the beer. However the prices on the wines and liquors seemed a lot cheeper than I expected.

As for people, I actually think that the "beer guy" there when I was there did not know his stuff. He was trying to find the Ommegang for a customer, and he kept looking with all the Belgian imports. I actually intervened after like 2 minutes and showed the guy where it was.

All told, the selection gets this one an overall "good" in my book, but that might just be because it's different than what we have back home.

More User Reviews:
Photo of BRami127
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of Jas45678
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of 302BeerGuy
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of surfcaster
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Great selection, first come first serve no BS kind of place.

Photo of brandoman63
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of markgugs
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of dtomes
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of cadaugherty
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of little_star
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of JohneHoodlum
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of Stevedore
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4

Selection here is great in terms of quantity and a couple of recent releases were still on the shelves but nothing overly rare or interesting was available when I stopped by. All the locals are represented well as well as many of the better out of state breweries.

The location is fantastic if you are staying in on or near North Michigan Ave.

Photo of Roman5150
3.88/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 2.75 | selection: 4.75

Was in Chicago over the weekend, visited this place after hearing so much about it. Wow, never seen a selection this big. So many beers I have been searching for, (La Trappe Oak Aged Quads, Ten Fidy, EVERY Michigan beer), maybe im just used to the horrible selection living in Tennessee, but even in SE Michigan not many stores come close to the size and selection.

The Belgian aisle was very impressive, every single trappist that is available in the US, they had. Many rare belgians that I have only seen in Belgium as well.

The domestic aisles were also very large, and pretty well organized. I checked a lot of dates, and while assuming their is a high turnover here, didn't find anything expired (or even close), which is awesome.

Not much service, I was browsing for a solid hour and not one person came up to me to ask if I needed help, then again, this is how I would like it, I hate being bothered unless I ask for help, but others may see this as a negative.

Also, it's pretty cool they have parking given their location in River North. Next time im in Chicago, I will be back!

Photo of MinorThreat
2.76/5  rDev -28.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 1 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

I stopped into Binny's during a trip to Chicago last week. I am from Denver and was excited to try some Midwest beer that is not available in my distribution area.

A-Looked like most of the Big Box LQ's I've been to. Clean and well stocked. Kind of warm inside a problem I will get to next.

Q-Here is where I have a big axe to grind. I picked up Central Waters IIPA, Founders Centennial IPA, Stone 10yr ruination (sold out fast at home) and a few lambics. I was a bit concerned buying hoppy beers that have been setting warm (real warm) on the self, but thought they would be ok.
I get back to the hotel and look at the Founders IPA, bottled 2/XX/12, five months old, hot for five months... Guess what they tasted like cooked vegetables and stale grass.... Ok so I grabbed a bad six, so I move on to the Central Waters IIPA. Did not notice a date, did notice the awful DMS from cooking on the shelf. Ok that sucks but I've a bomber that is only a few weeks old. Once again, trashed, total drain pour. I just wasted $35....great....
Selection was really nice, however I would never buy another beer from Binny's again. Hopefully the 12 bottles of Fruet they currently are baking don't completely fall apart too.
I am far from a complainer, the Founders IPA was my bad, I would have avoided a five month old IPA had I looked. But c'mon 3 for 3 is pretty bad. More than anything I would be furious if I was one of the brewers who beer Binny's is ruining then selling. What the hell is the point of making a quality product when the retailer is just going to destroy it so bud light can stay cold?

S-Pretty standard... nothing great nothing bad

S-Good, but sort of hard to respect a huge selection of wrecked beers.

V-Prices were good for the product in quality form, the product just was not in quality form.

O-Avoid, seriously, they don't have enough refrigeration or sense to crank the a/c if nothing else to preserve the beers they have rotting on the shelf. I would rather have a mediocre IIPA that had been cared for than Pliny from Binny's.

Photo of stouts4me
3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

Good atmosphere here.

Quality is on par with other Binny's.

Service is good, pretty much all Binny's have employee's eager to help.

Selection is real good, differs from other Binny's somewhat, for instance, I found like 15 Santa's Little Helper from Port Brewing here, and none at the Binny's by GI Clybourn. Also, I found 2 Black Cauldren from Grand Teton, none anywhere else.Nectar Ales Black xantus were about 10 deep here, also. And Dampf Loc from Local Option was here, haven't seen it anywhere before.

no food here.

Value-great if you hit their sales, good otherwise.

Photo of elNopalero
4.58/5  rDev +18%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

I’m pretty impressed by the selection at this place. Not only did they have a whole corner of the store devoted to domestic craft brew, they also had a whole aisle of imports, and plenty of beers in the fridge. But they didn’t have KBS! (I was there the day it came out—but too late for any.) I spoke with some knowledgeable staff/beer geeks who had some good recommendations to visit during my stay in Chicago. And—since their excellent selection goes beyond beers—I ended up picking up some bourbon too!

Photo of smakawhat
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Well for a first visit to Chicago Binny's does the trick. This store is laid out well and very organized. Selection is quite good for domestic craft consisting of some good Chicago selections, and a mix of some basic and some obscure. Three Floyds though flies off the shelf here. I grabbed a pack of their Pride and Joy, hesitated, but it back, then came back 10 minutes later to purchase it making my mind up and it was gone.

Staff here is also quite helpful. Prices seem reasonable as well. The staff went in the back to grab something that wasn't on the shelf for us too. Selection is also good for foreign with a large variety including lambic and gueze styles, however a colleague didn't like the German selection that much.

Still there is mug to enjoy here, ny only complaint is you can't break up the six packs and mix them up. I wish I could have, there was so much here I wanted to try.

Photo of zeff80
3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Popped in here for a short visit while driving to supper nearby. It was bigger than I expected when I saw it from the outside. Beer makes up the left hand wall of the store. There was a nice selection of beers that I can't find in Missouri - like Port, Dogfish Head, Allagash, Victory, Lost Abbey and locals like Half Acre and Flossmoor. Service seemed rather disinterested and I would like to have a large order of beer placed in a box not in plastic bags. What I have sampled so far from there has been good quality. It appears the IPAs are fresh and they move product pretty rapidly. I did not have a lot of time otherwise I would have spent more time and money in that store.

Photo of thain709
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I had the Binny's in Lincoln Park on my list of places to go, but it turns out this Binny's was just a short walk from our hotel. So we went and checked it out to kill some time.

As you enter and walk down the ramp you can see this one focuses on the wine. Wine takes up most of the (small) space. The liquor is off to your right and the beer is far off to the left.

The selection is much smaller than that of the Lincoln Park location. It's also very cramped in a corner. The import section is small, but included brews from all over (BrewDog and Evil Twin stood out). The craft section is about four short rows of 6 packs and bombers. Craft breweries were well represented: Goose Island (including their soda), Half Acre (no Daisy Cutter), Metropolitan, Two Brothers, Floosmore, Victory, Boulevard, Tyranena, New Belgium, Great Lakes, New Holland (all the Hatter selections).

As I said, it was smaller than that of the Lincoln Park location, but there were some things this location had over the other one. I was disappointed to find no Daisy Cutter or Three Floyds. Service again wasn't bad. We were helped in the wine department more than the beer section.

Photo of Northsider
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4

This location is very close to work, so it's easy for me. Good selection here, but I wish they had more chilled. Only a select few crafts make it to the fridge area... Unless you are looking for Hard Lemonade, Bud, etc you won't find much cold.

Actual building is pretty cramped and small. Not a big surprise I guess, considering it's River North. I kept bumping into people while navigating the aisles.

I was able to pick up some Flying Dog and Great Lakes when I was there. They accept credit cards, which is great since the liquor store near my place is cash only.

Not much else to say...standard-ish Binnys.

Photo of argock
3.74/5  rDev -3.6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

Visited on a recent Sunday for a few items to try I usually wouldn't get my hands on in Virginia. They have a ton of stuff, without a doubt. It is slanted toward American beers, but there is a long aisle of Belgian and other imports above and beyond what I would expect, even for a big city store.
On the American end they carry Western brews: Port Brewing, Lost Abbey, North Coast, Lagunitas, Green Flash, Bridgeport, Sierra Nevada, Breckenridge, Fort Collins, New Belgium, Great Divide, SKA, Uinta, Widmer, Pyramid ; Midwest brews: Two Brothers, Three Floyds (limited), Boulevard, Goose Island (but no BCBS), Tyraena, Flossmoor, New Holland, Founders, Bell's, Great Lakes, Hoppin' Frog, and plenty of very local micros; and Eastern brews: Smuttynose, Southern Tier, Victory, Brooklyn, Ommegang, Allagash.
There were an impressive number of Belgian and German brews and others like Hitachino Nest.
Pretty wide selection overall and prices were really good by my estimation -- 6-packs for 8.99-9.99 were most common and bombers for 4.49-8.99.
One big drawback which probably isn't unusual for the city is no singles of 12oz beers -- I asked to make a 6 pack of 2 each of several beers and was turned down categorically even though all the 6-packs were the same price.
All in all, I would go back, but I would plan to hit them the first day of my visit as there is so much to buy in so little time.

Photo of KickInTheChalice
3.65/5  rDev -5.9%

The main thing this Binny's has working against it is being compared to other Binny's. At this point, I have been to ten or so Binny's, and this is the location in most need of an update. The whole store is cramped, it seems dingy, and the underground / cave nature of the entrance does not help.

On the plus side, you can be 100% confident that light is not hitting the craft beer section, since none gets in the store at all.

In terms of selection, this Binny's has less than the Lincoln Park or Lakeview stores do, but every once in a while they might have something not available elsewhere. The prices are on par with what you expect to pay at other locations.

Overall, this is a decent store. It serves its purpose of being close enough to work for me to pick up something every once in a while on the way home from work.

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Binny's Beverage Depot - River North in Chicago, IL
88 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.