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Cap N Cork Liquor

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very good

22 Ratings
Ratings: 22
Reviews: 18
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 15.7%
[ Store ]

1674 Hillhurst Ave
Los Angeles, California, 90027-5532
United States
phone: (323) 665-1260

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(Place added by: Rumrunner)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 22 | Reviews: 18 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of uberabr


1.5/5  rDev -62%

I went to Cap N' Cork today to pick up some beers I havn't been able to find. Their website listed about 10 or so that I wanted. When I got there, it was immediately obvious that they didn't have all the beers listed on the site. They have 1 wall of coolers full of beers...hardly enough for the thousands they have listed online.

I ended up not finding a SINGLE beer I had come for.

I talked to the manager, disappointed by their false advertisement. He said that they used to carry all those beers because they were a litle over ambitious when they first opened, but that they ended up having to throw most of them away due to lack of sales, and consequently they offer a relatively limited selection. I mentioned that I drove about 45 minutes to get there and didn't end up finding a single beer, and the guy gave me a half-assed "sorry." I then pointed out that they might want to change their website since it is just about completely wrong. No response.

This brings me to my next point: There is a psychological principle called the Sunk Cost effect. When someone drives an hour to get to a store because they supposedly have a large selection of rare beers, they will undoubtedly feel obligated to buy SOMETHING, even if they don't find anything they were actually looking for. They end up justifying the lost time by buying something they never wanted to begin with. I feel that Cap N Cork is, intentionally or not, utilizing this principle. Why havn't they changed their website? They've figured out that in sales, the number one priority is getting the customer there, it has nothing to do with the actual product. What a lame, immoral business game.

My last point: On top of not having the beers I came for, their selection of other beers was also sub-par. I couldn't find a single beer I'de like to try. Not a single Lagunitas, Stone, or Bear Republic beer. I guess if you're relatively un-established in the beer-tasting game, and you happened across this store, you'de be very impressed. To me, it was a let down. My local wine store has a much finer selection. Ironically, I found the Lagunitas I was looking for at a gas station on my way home.

What a lame store. I'll never return.

10-20-2006 05:50:35 | More by uberabr
Photo of kojevergas


3.4/5  rDev -13.9%

I live within walking distance of the Cap N Cork, so I end up coming here whenever I run out of beer or just want to poke in and see what's new. First things first: the employees are absolutely clueless. At best, they know if they're getting Deschutes The Abyss or not. I've tried to talk to them about breweries and upcoming seasonals and whatnot, and it's clear that they have no idea what I'm talking about.

No food is served here, but you can buy snacks. Just not pretzels. Chips but not pretzels. The horror!

Selection is above average, but they rarely get anything truly limited or special. A few overpriced bottles of red poppy sat here for a few months before someone cleaned them out. What I like about the Cap N Cork is that they frequently have variety boxes from breweries - moreso than you'll find at the Vons down the road. They also have a decent selection of six packs, but never the more sought after 6ers like Lagunitas Sucks. There's a fair amount of German and Belgian imports, but little of note. If you're after a year round six pack or if you're looking for an uncommon Californian bomber, this might be a good bottle shop to visit - if you don't mind paying a little more than you would elsewhere.

I usually see Lagunitas, Stone, Bear Republic, Victory, a couple Lost Abbey, Rogue, and various west coast options here. They have some stuff from Oregon but nothing like Cascade. Even their Deschutes selection is usually lackluster; they don't often carry even the seasonals. I've also seen Green Flash and Old Rasputin ($8.99 a four pack). Alesmith Speedway Stout is $11.99 here; that's $1.00 more than most places and & $1.50 more than BevMo! They do carry Sierra Nevada if that's your bag; I know they got Narwhal earlier this year (albeit at $10.99 a four pack). I've never seen Alpine here, but they did have The Bruery Oude Tart at an obscene price.

They don't seem to care about the age of bottles; old IPAs would definitely sit out here.

Elsewise, it's nothing to write home about. Just a decent bottle shop that really only makes sense for local residents in my opinion.


01-19-2013 00:35:42 | More by kojevergas
Photo of charlzm


3.7/5  rDev -6.3%

Visited on Monday afternoon, 06/23/08, at about 3:30pm.

The store is very clean and well organized. Almost all of the substantial floor space is dedicated to wine, and there are lots of spirits arrayed impressively on shelves behind the counter.

The beer is kept in coolers; I didn't count, but, if memory serves, they have about eight doors of craft beer. Impressive.

Lots of bombers, individual bottles and sixers of all the usual suspects that a moderately well-stocked LA area beer store carries. Nothing out of the ordinary (no Dogfish Head, Oskar Blues or Sprecher and very little Alesmith, Russian River, Lagunitas, Bear Republic or Ballast Point, for instance).

Decent selection of Belgian and German beers, and some nice English choices as well.

Even though I live only four miles away from this place, I don't think I'll be going back unless I'm much closer. And seeing as how I have never been to this neighborhood before, despite having lived in LA for 21 years...

A note about the service: I came up to the counter with $20.00 worth of beer and wanted to shop for more, but I really needed to use the restroom. I asked politely if I could use it, and the fellow behind the counter told me, "Sorry, no."

I told him it was a shame I couldn't buy more as I had to get to a restroom fast. This didn't sway him. I probably would have spent double that much if he'd have just let me pee in their restroom.

Maybe this is why I go so far out of my way to go to Walnut Liquor or Lone Hill - they never deny the bladder needs of their customers.

06-23-2008 23:49:26 | More by charlzm
Photo of BucBasil

South Carolina

3.7/5  rDev -6.3%

I was here today and overall the place made a pretty good impression on me. The entire wall is lined with beer coolers, and there were a couple of aisles as well, although the aisles were mostly for wine and liquor. Good selection, with some things that I hadn't seen before, but nothing too crazy. Good assortment of styles and geographic regions. The staff wasn't really involved much, but everything was pretty easy to find and self explanatory. Everything inside was well kept and clean and orderly.The location is great as well, a couple of blocks away from the Vermont/Sunset metro stop and in Los Feliz. It was kind of on the pricey side, but overall a good beer shop. I think I'll be stopping here again soon.

01-17-2011 02:25:54 | More by BucBasil
Photo of mikedrinksbeer2


3.73/5  rDev -5.6%

This is a nice store for the area. They have a vast wine inventory, in addition to tall wall of hard liquors. The entire back wall is a beer cooler that even wraps around the corner some. The beer is laid out in a really clear way, Styles and Location mainly sorted. It's easy to find what you're looking for. I don't always find the rarest of options, but it's a nice array (Stone, Bruery, Russian River, Abita, many Smaller CA brews as well). The Staff isn't very knowledgeable, which is a shame, but they're friendly when checking out. The Parking is a plus, and the prices are a little high.

11-01-2011 21:03:49 | More by mikedrinksbeer2
Photo of GRG1313


3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

11-19-2013 03:37:33 | More by GRG1313
Photo of augustgarage


3.85/5  rDev -2.5%

I've stopped in here a handful of times over the last year, and while they frequently don't have what I came in expecting to find, I always leave with something I hadn't heard of before.

Per previous reviews, all of the beer is in a wall length refrigerated case, with each door largely corresponding to a geographical location, style, or bottle size. Quality is generally very good, although several beers don't seem to turn over very quickly, so be cautious when picking out a hefe or an ipa. On the other hand, I tend to find ales that are no longer in production as well - especially limited Belgian releases - though nothing super-rare.

Besides the single bottles, they have a wide selection of 4 and 6 packs, cans, cases, min-kegs, and so on - largely from the West Coast, but including several gems from Belgium, England, Australia, Germany, Austria, etc. Prices can be slightly high (e.g. Temptation runs almost $26; and they mark-up their top-shelf whiskey quite a bit), but overall they compare well to anywhere else in L.A.

Spirit selection is rather good, and while their single wall presentation is impressive (though I wouldn't want to be working there during a strong earthquake), it doesn't lend itself well to browsing.

Soft drinks, mixers, snacks, and a few groceries are here as well since they still try to maintain an identity as a neighborhood corner store rather than a specialized liquor emporium.

I get the impression the business is family run, so the person behind the counter can be a surly and condescending middle aged man, an earnest enthusiastic young man, a harried but kind matriarch, or any combination thereof.

Worth a visit if you are in or near the neighborhood - though try to keep an open mind about what you hope to find within.

10-14-2009 03:19:21 | More by augustgarage
Photo of DogFood11


3.85/5  rDev -2.5%

I drop in here from time to time although its a bit out of my usual routes so it doesn't get near enough attention from me. The entire beer supply is stored in the wall lined coolers. The owner seemed eager to talk to me about his beer stock and pointed out some new seasonal offerings they just got in. Friendly guy and motivated. He also asked for any suggestions and I told him I'd take it easy on all the organic stuff and lean on some of the better local Micro's like ballast point, Lagunitas and maybe branch out for some east coast brews.

Selection: They carried 4 or 5 offerings from Stone and Rogue. 1 cooler was well stocked with some hard to find Belgians along with the usual suspects. I picked up some triple karamelite and a few bottles of poppering hommel. The biggest downside is the selection of American Micro's was decent at best. Tons of organic offerings from various brewers. They carried the line of Santa Cruz (Ughhh). They carry a line of SLO brewing (ehhh). I was excited to find Full Sail's LTD series in six packs, that was an easy choice.

Notes: Prices were on the high side especially considering there is a bevmo just a few miles away with a selection at least on par with this. Kind of a shitty part of town. Graffiti covered the bldg across the street from the cap n cork. Worthy of a stop.

01-26-2007 23:40:10 | More by DogFood11
Photo of ithacabaron


3.9/5  rDev -1.3%

Plenty of free parking.

The store is vast, one of those SoCal classics with a twenty-foot high wall of booze and a sea of wine. Beer is kept cold -- almost all of it -- with about 12 coolers, stacked end to end. Bottles that come from here are always nice and fresh. Organized by country and style, things are easy to find and a good selection of classics (Stone, Alesmith) and hot new kids on the block (The Bruery, etc.) are easily found. Great seasonal rotation, including hard to find one-offs from local breweries.

Service is nice when you're checking out, but otherwise non-existent.

A great snapshot of what beer drinking in Los Angeles looks like right now. Prices are a bit higher than I'd like, but they always are, aren't they?

06-06-2011 07:05:34 | More by ithacabaron
Photo of Rumrunner


4/5  rDev +1.3%

Update: 4/5/2005
I will leave my old review as is and just highlight the new Cap N' Cork.

The Cap N' Cork has moved across the street to a larger facility. A much cleaner and more respectable atmosphere. The spirit and wine selection has gotten larger and the wine selection is much more credible. They now have a small deli and make sandwiches. They also have a larger parking lot in the back. Everthing is an upgrade.

The beer selection is about the same. They have added a few and removed a few. Sadly they had no Fantome. They have added Bear Republic, Left Hand and Ommegang. Prices for some beers were very competitive. This is still a good but not a great place to purchase craft and imported beer. (End of update.)

Sometimes when a chance is taken, it pays off. I drove by this store and I decided to check it out. A pretty normal looking store from the outside. Nothing impressive. I step in. Pretty dingy and this place sure needs a face lift or just a mop and dust rag. Not the cleanest of liquor stores.

They carry plenty of wine and spirits. Chips, crackers and dips as well. The macro selection and mid sized breweries are well represented. In fact they have twelve packs and cases of beer stacked up all over the store. Mostly macros but some Sam Adams and Sierra Nevada Pale as well. There is very little floor space in this store.

Well the cooler is another story. Plenty of quality brews. Let's start American. Stone, Alesmith, Anderson Valley, North Coast, Firestone, Anchor Steam and a few others. A decent supply of German and English beers. They had a healthy supply of Mexican beers, Brazilian and even beers from Guatemala. I bought a couple of these. What the heck, I have never had Guatemalan beer before. Casta from Mexico is here and a couple of Czech., Chinese and Indian beers They also have a nice supply of Belgians. Fantome and Fantome Noel. Lambics and Abbey ales. A huge selection? No, but not bad. I am sure a Belgian beer drinker could find something to their liking here. A very nice supply of beers.

I put my selections on the counter and it immediately drew interest from a few other customers. It was the bottle of Fantome that did it. The proprieter and I talked beer for a few minutes while the customers looked shocked as we could find so much to talk about the beer I was purchasing. Maybe they took some knowledge away with them? The owner does love beer.

Overall a very healthy selection. The prices are about a buck more per selection than a few other places that I purchase beer. But in a pinch this place will do nicely.

I learned from just having a minute to investigate this liquor store that all routes must be explored and traveled. You never know what you might be missing.

11-07-2003 07:24:25 | More by Rumrunner
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Cap N Cork Liquor in Los Angeles, CA
89 out of 100 based on 22 ratings.