John's Market

Not Rated.
John's MarketJohn's Market
BA SCORE
95
world-class

62 Reviews
Reviews: 62
Visits: 83
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: n/a
[ Store ]

3535 SW Multnomah Blvd
Portland, Oregon, 97219-3761
United States
phone: (503) 244-2617

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

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Place added by: HiroProtagonist

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Reviews: 62 | Visits: 83
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%

Don't let John's Fool ya! It looks shabby but it is a must stop! Go to the back and a plethora of great beers awaits. You name it, John's has it!!! I regret no being able to bring home all of the beers that were starring on these shelves. Boo-hoo! Alesmith, Rogue, Hair of the Dog, Avery (even 9th and 10th) Wow!

The people who work here are glued to a cash registar but they speak highly of their manager. Cheers!

This place will make you weak in the knees for beer!





I was here in August. Almost forgot to review it. (536 characters)

Photo of waldowin
4.4/5  rDev +2.6%

As this was my first real "beer-store" visit, I wasn't sure what to expect. Walked in, saw racks of convenience-store items at the very front, and nearly left. Until I saw around them, and realized the *entire store* from that point back was all wines and beers. Shortly after that, I realized any beer I'd really been wanting to try was offered here (with a few smaller exceptions).

The only knock on this place, is that it's pretty brightly lit, and the only beer they keep cold is macrobrews (bud, coors, etc), which was hard to believe.

I quickly forgave them as I realized they had entire shelves of some beers that were retired a year ago or more. However, the strong majority of these brews are present-day, I got the impression that the only reason they had 2004 examples of Storm King, say, was because they just had that much inventory and hadn't sold it yet (several cases were stacked on the floor).

Bought waaaay too much beer there in spite of this (to the tune of $130, ouch!). Cracked one of the Storm Kings that had been sitting out for a year, and it was excellent, so I'm not too worried about the rest.

As far as the service goes, the only service I received was the man ringing up my order, who was friendly, but not terribly knowledgable.

Absolutely worth a trip if you're in the area. I know I'll get back there some time in a month or so, when I've finally consumed all these amazing beers. (1,429 characters)

Photo of GClarkage
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%

My lower jaw dropped all the way to the floor when I saw the beer selection this place had. I thought Bottleworks was the be all end all of beer stores in the world. Well, this place pretty much doubled the selection of Bottleworks. Located in what looks as though was once an old grocery store (I guess it still is...technically), you walk to the back of the store and are amazed by huge coolers and wall to wall and aisle after aisle of beer. Most are organized by country. They also have an entire cooler about 12 doors long with just USA micro's! Again, another store that was Dogfish, Weyerbacher and Victory on the west coast! Huge Belgian selection and a whole 5 shelf 8 foot long shelf unit of X-mas brews! The service was pretty shitty though. No one at the front knew jack about beer and after looking and gwaking at all the beer for at least 30 minutes, no one even asked me if I needed any kind of help. The only other knock about this store is that most of the beers were on shelves rather than in coolers. So, I guess time will tell as I drink all the bottle I brought from there are in good shape or not. If they are, this place is incredible. Another must stop at....several times in your life...beer store. (1,223 characters)

Photo of Crotor
4/5  rDev -6.8%

Damned impressive, this place. It boasts a top-notch selection with the best of the West Coast from SoCal (think Alesmith and Stone) to the North Bay (think Bear Republic) to Washington. John's Marketplace also had a first class selection of Belgians - only the addition of Westvleteren could've improved it. Also offered some hard to find east coast gems from Victory and DFH. German and international selections were also impressive. Most beers stored at a surprisingly cold room temperature, though there was some refridgeration.

My only complaint would be that some of the aisles were rather narrow, and many of the beer geek sort - myself included - tend to be rather wide. I was constantly afraid I was going to knock precious beer bottles off the shelves.

Note: my only interaction with "service" being when I checked out, I can't really evaluate that factor. If I could check "n/a" I would... (906 characters)

Photo of TheNothing
4.85/5  rDev +13.1%

John's Marketplace really is the end-all-be-all of beer merchants in Portland. It puts Susie O's and Liquid Solutions to shame. Never in one place have I see such a selection of craft beers, imports, wines and even meads (over 12 to choose from) in a single location. While many complain about the dent in the pocketbook, it really isn't because of pricing (compared to Thriftway 2 miles away). 12oz bottles are priced individually and you can get 5% off 12oz bottles with a mixed 6pack of your choosing. I go to John's Marketplace more than once a week as not to tap my wallet too hard at one sitting. (602 characters)

Photo of SamuraiJack
4.65/5  rDev +8.4%

I won't talk about the shock when making the transition from the outside (scruffy neighborhood corner store) to the inside (beer lover's heaven) as that has been covered in depth by previous reviewers.

Instead, I'll talk about the amazing selection and excellent service.

John's is one of the two or three best beer stores that I've experienced in the United States on selection alone. An incredible variety of American Craft beers (especially strong in regional PNW breweries) is complimented by one of the better Belgian selections and a very broad international selection (with especially good representation from Britain and Germany). The only weakness I was able to identify was in the Lambic styles where the selection was better than average but in no way up to the standard they are setting overall.

While the service may seem, on the surface, to be perfunctual, it is well worth your while to pester. The beer knowledge available to you on request is amazing. If you want an accurate and complete recommendation or description of a beer - you will get it, no matter how obscure your question may be.

Be warned... this place will put a dent in your pocketbook. (1,180 characters)

Photo of NVbeer
4.45/5  rDev +3.7%

My wife and I made this our last stop on our way out of Portland. From the outside one would never think that a truely amazing selection of beers awaited. Once inside I was awstruck by the selection. There were beers I have only read about on BA such as Thomas Hardy's, Three Philosophers, and many, many more. My only problem with John's is that the majority of beers sit out at room temp. and many were covered with a fine layer of dust. While they may still have been good, I was quite leary of purchasing any that appeared to have been sitting out for a while.
There was a large selection that remained in coolers, and so for those who prefer beer kept at cooler temps, it is still a place to go.
The prices were resonable for what I had seen during my time in Portland, so I would add this to my short list of must go places when in town.
Jason
NVBeer (864 characters)

Photo of beerguy101
4.8/5  rDev +11.9%

This place is one of the most unlikely beer Mecca’s I have ever been to. From the front it looks like a seedy grocery store, in fact the day I was there were several college age kids drinking Steel Reserve 211 out front. Once you are inside and find the beer section (which is nearly the entire back half of the store), there is literally beer everywhere you look. On shelves, stacked in boxes, in several different coolers. Then there is the selection. There are massive quantities of Pacific Northwest micros, craft beers from California and Colorado, an extensive selection from England and a whole shit-load of beer from Belgium.

I spent nearly an hour wandering around in a beer hunter induced stupor before making my purchases. I kept finding something I had not seen before, and must of made 10-15 round trips through the place.

The ONLY problem I had with the place is the way the beer is displayed. A lot of it is out in the open and the place was kind of warm. Still none of he beers I bought there have suffered any ill effects,

This place is a MUST is you go to Portland. (1,096 characters)

Photo of Elemental
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%

Damn I love this place. On top of having deli style and other types of food, the wine and beer selection is impecable. It can be a little pricy for some of the beers you can find regularly at the grocery store, but as for the quality brews its great. Great selections and its all catagorized by country. (303 characters)

Photo of HiroProtagonist
4.85/5  rDev +13.1%

The best beer selection I have ever seen! New items appear on a regular basis too... and they always have those limited special edition beers you might be looking for. Like the previous reviewer said, be careful...you may stay for longer than you anticipate, browsing and dreaming. I enjoy the friday beer (free) and wine ($2) tastings on a weekly basis. Its nice to try out stuff from breweries you haven't gotten to yet. Nice people too.

2004 review edit..service is much more attentative these days, there almost always someone asking if I need help finding something, and Dave, the owner and beer master, is great to talk to. --add half point to 4.5. (658 characters)

Photo of freed
4.65/5  rDev +8.4%

Great wine selection, exceptional beer selection, and a great family helping out. However, be forwarned of the wandering, dumbfounded mood that will set upon you unless you stay focused. I often linger for much longer when stopping by to pick up a bottle or two.

The selection is prime, giving homage to most beer producing regions in the world, as well as an effort to perpetually add new beers. Recent tasting events with Dogfish Head and Mendicino added a whole new lure, though the large crowd from wine tastings often fills the aisles.

I've always had very good, curteous service, and love their sense of humor. Plus, the jerky discs near the checkout are good. (674 characters)

Photo of weefisheads
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%

Since the demise of the Northwests largest beer store (Burlington Market) several years ago in a literal ball of flames, I've been searching for a place to get all the beer I want, all in one place.

The search is over.

The facade of the building is that of any medium sized, mom & pop market - nothing impressive there. Even upon first entry, the place still underwhelms as you think this is just an ordinary store, repleat with a rack of t-shirts for sale. However, those intrepid enough to walk to the back of the store are rewarded with a selection of beers that'll make even non-beer lovers goggle. Several racks of bombers, many full coolers, and an unbelievable selection of international beers make this the best beer store in Portland far and away.

Having said that, I give the selection only 4.5 because, alas, OR can't compare to other states that offer beers from all over. Any beer from the Midwest is out of the question, and East Coast beers are limited to Sam Adams and one or two others. But that's anywhere in OR, so I can't fault 'em there. In addition, service here doesn't compare with the smaller places (Liquid Solution, Belmont Station) where folks are ever so eager to make suggestions and just plain chat beer. Maybe 2.5 is even being generous.

Oh well, size has it's disadvantages, but if your simply looking for a large selection of just about every beer you can find in the Northwest, than John's Market is a must!

NOTE : After visiting John's Market quite a few times since this review, I've changed the service to a 4.0 because I've received some great help from Dave, the beer guru here. Still not as service oriented as some other smaller places, but I shall go no where else. (1,723 characters)

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John's Market in Portland, OR
95 out of 100 based on 62 ratings.