Liquor World

Liquor WorldLiquor World
Liquor WorldLiquor World

13 White Street
Cambridge, Massachusetts, 02140
United States

(617) 547-3110 | map

View: Place Reviews | Events
Reviews: 25 | Ratings: 33 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Glider
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75

This store is more about the liquor, which stretches the length of the small shop, whereas the beer is wedged in a couple of coolers wrapping around the back along with a few racks running into stacks of cases. They have a pretty decent selection given the amount of space.

Prices might be a little high but not too bad. The bigger draw is that you will occasionally find things you wouldn't really expect to see. For example, I picked up a four-pack of Mayflower Thanksgiving after I had looked for it at a couple other places and been told it was all snapped up right away. Overall a bit disorganized, with the occasional gem.

Their liquor selection is somewhat similar. Multiple times I have seen unusual items at a good price and grabbed them, only to come back a few weeks later and see that they raised the price quite a bit. However, they do have a good selection of liquors, which I appreciate for my cocktail hobby. Some of their whiskey prices especially are a bit ridiculously high, so you do have to pick and choose if you are price conscious.

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

off the top, this place gets a fair amount of press from MA BAs, which likely led to my being somewhat disappointed: my expectations were too high. personally i found the selection to be decent - above average - but nowhere near what i was expecting after hearing numerous glowing reviews.

they hit on the usual suspects - DFH, founders, pretty things, lost abbey, ommegang, stone, southern tier, et al., and a few belgians, but really nothing out of the ordinary. picked up a DFH WWS, and Brix from element brewing co. much, much bigger selction at downtown wine and spirits a stone's throw away in somerville. don't get me wrong, you could do a lot worse, but with plenty of equal - if not better - places around the Boston area, this isn't one you need to go out of your way for IMO.

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Photo of Hopdaemon39
4/5  rDev +1.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

Originally went here to find De Dolle (anything)- they have the Oerbier and Dulle Teve (which I picked up on my last visit). They have a nice selection of Belgian beers (including De Dolle, St. Bernardus, Chouffe, Rochefort, and others) and a pretty good selection of domestic- Stone, Victory, The Bruery, DFH, etc. If you a frequent redline user this will be a very convenient stop for you as it is RIGHT off the Porter Square stop. However, it is not convenient for me as I live in JP unless I'm going to/coming from the Homebrew Emporium.

The De Dolle I bought at $6.95 a bottle and I bought Weihenstephaner Heffe for $11.95 a 6-pack. A little pricey but not outrageous.

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Photo of mlazzaro
4.45/5  rDev +12.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

People that work there have helped me pick out beers based on personal experience, that's really rare and helpful. I appreciate it. Small but quite good selection. They play NPR. Ever now and then I find the most ridiculous nugget, like a 10 year old J.W.Lees for $10. and Fantome <$13. They seem to intentionally buy rare beer which make my life easier. Good old high ABV beers for decent prices. Considering the location, I've left feeling like I got some serious deals. Check it out and don't miss the back cooler.

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Photo of celticfutblclub
4/5  rDev +1.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

so first things first i think the new look in liquor world has definitely enhanced the feel of the place. its a minor note as one doesnt go to a liquor store for the feel but for the selection .. but still its a nice touch.

the selection for such a small place is quite good six pack selection is small but i think they cover a good range of beers with the space they have. the selection of bombers is much better. some appear to have sat for a bit but picking up a pretty things or something local you will find that they arent too dated.

the pricing is definitely much better then any other place in the area they beat downtown by about a buck a bomber/sixpack and the same can be said of the local liquor store thats a bit closer to me. also conveniently located off the T which is nice.

all in all a good dependable liquor store.

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Photo of Fluke828
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%

Checked this place out the other day due to the other BA reviews and I have to say, everyone is pretty spot on about this place. Somewhat of a small space in the Porter Square shopping center but the selection is pretty impressive for the amount of room they have.

Very nice variety in the sixpacks that are in the first coolers you come to in the back. However, the 3-4 coolers around to the left were strictly reserved for bombers and was really terrific. Reasonably priced overall even though just picked up a few local bombers. Nice to see Three Philosophers on the shelf as well, good to know. I would reoccommend this place and definitely will be back due the proximity to the Porter Red Line T Stop (literally across the street)

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Photo of zackcg
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%

I'd under appreciated Liquor World for almost a year while living in Somerville, but as time went on I came to realize they are a force in the Cambridge-Somerville circuit.

The selection is always well balanced as far as styles is concerned. You'll always be able to find bear republic, founder's, DFH, lost abbey/port and many other cross-coast offerings. They always do a good job competing with highly sought after beers i.e - nemesis, KBS, gandhi-bot, nugget nectar, sculpin, older viscosity, etc...

The customer service is exceptional as well, promptly answering email inquiries time and time again (they now have a very informative and frequently updated twitter page - hugely helpful). They even toss in quantity based discounts for those who make a decent sized haul on craft stuff.

There isn't much in the way of makin mix sixers, and you can't split anything up, its something I like to be able to do from time to time, but not a deal breaker by any means.

To those who plan on going or have never been, the beer is in the back. Thats all you need to know.

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Photo of gfreed
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%

A nice find in Cambridge in an unlikely locale. You'll usually find someone arguing with him or herself outside the store. Inside it's narrow and deep, and the floors aren't very clean. The beer is logically grouped in the coolers, and off to the side are the big bottles and unusual things, both warm and cold. This is the only store in the Boston area I've been to that regularly stocks Weihenstephaner lager, which is reason enough to visit. However, also note their prices: almost always a dollar below those at nearby stores. The staff tend to be heavily tattooed and can appear off-putting but if you ask a question they give knowledgeable answers in complete sentences. Definitely worth putting up with the difficult parking lot, where the spaces are narrow and the drivers elderly.

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Photo of MrDanno96
4/5  rDev +1.3%

I stopped in here on Sunday before heading home from EBF 2010. I was a little disappointed initially because the place is kind of small and the beer is stuffed all the way in the back. After looking around for a bit, however, I realized their selection is pretty impressive. Everything you would expect, plus some rarer finds. They had three different Founders beers and I was delighted to find some Lost Abbey as well, including Bbl Angels Share. They had tons of singles in the coolers, which is always nice. The guy working up front was helpful and it turned out he had actually been at EBF too. Since I'm not from Boston I'll probably check out some other Liquor stores the next time I come, but this seems like a great option for local beer lovers.

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Photo of albern
4/5  rDev +1.3%

I can't add too much beyond what everyone else said, but this is an interesting, tucked away sort of place in the Porter Square shopping center. I had been here years ago and the place has definitely kept up with the times. There is a cooler on the back wall facing front that is full of the typical stand bys and a bunch of macro junk. Go around the corner and they have singles in the cooler, and lots of them. I definitely appreciate singles in the cooler and this place will not disappoint. They have some harder to find beers, such as Fuller's, Coopers, and many more. This is a nice store, unpretentious, decent prices, much cheaper than Elm Street Liquors in Davis Square ... but isn't that just about universally true.

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Photo of BeerutalTruth
4.65/5  rDev +17.7%

Liquor World is like a hidden gem in Cambridge. Very unassuming form the outside, you'd think they specialize in Jack Daniels and 30 packs. Upon entry head to the back left part of the store and plan to spend 20 minutes going through their craft beer section. It seems like there's something new every week. They have at least five cooler doors and two large shelves of strictly craft beer. Bombers, 6 packs and they will even special order kegs for you!! If you have any questions just seek out the guy with all the tattoos and he will drop some knowledge and send you in the right direction. No pretension here. It's one of those stores where if you're buying a case of Sierra and for some reason 2 12 packs ring up cheaper they will tell you to go for the 12 packs.

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Photo of morebeergood
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Stopped in here randomly on a Monday afternoon to check this place out. No greeting when I walked in, and just a grunt to my "thanks" on the way out. Oh well. Very long store, wine to the right, liquor to the left, and all the beer is at the back. Pretty expensive selection. All the major US craft breweries represented here, with a few small ones sprinkled in here and there. Even better selection of Euro beer. Some beers that I seriously have never even heard of. Nice. Six packs and bombers mostly. Prices were in line with what things cost around town. I didn't really see any "deals" to report or prices that made me jump. It was pretty much everything you can find elsewhere at the same price as everywhere else. That said, if I lived in Porter Sq, and this was the only place that sold beers, I would not be too upset. Overall, a well-above average beer store. I picked up a few singles (Heavy Seas Barleywine & and a Stouterik Belgian stout) for $5.75 total. Would stop in again if I was in the neighborhood.

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Photo of IBUnit63
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%

I've heard good things about this place. Even though I have way too much beer in my house I was at the Shaw's next door so I stopped in.

The store is typical size for an urban strip mall setting, so it's a little tight, but that's OK. Most of the beer is in the back 1/3 of the location. Coolers are full of good stuff, as is the left-size back wall and inner shelf. While selection isn't huge due to size there is a lot of quality in here. Good number of recent offerings from Founder's (Porter, etc.) and many other places. Prices seem to be inline with the rest of the area - maybe not utterly cheap but good enough to say "yup, that seems reasonable." The beer guys were attentive - frequently making the rounds but it seemed like they could tell who needed help and who was covered on their own so there wasn't that unnecessary "can I help you find anything" when you're deep in thought. That counts for something. This is right off the Porter Square T so location is convenient. I'll definitely put this place in the rotation.

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Photo of applky
3.25/5  rDev -17.7%

I upped my quality rating because it's so close to the Porter T stop. Few beer stores in the Boston area are this good and are this close to a major T stop. (The notable exception is Charles Street Liquors, which is by Charles/MGH has a definite edge over Liquor World in selection and service, but is more expensive.)

The good stuff is in this weird hallway in the back. Rogue, Southern Tier, Cisco's, Dogfish, Schneider, Weihenstephan, and sometimes even Founder's (among others) are regularly and widely stocked. FYI: Yes, I've seen the Founder's Breakfast Stout there on several occasions but never the Kentucky variety. Overall, the selection is good. That there are numerous places within a 15 minute drive from here with significantly better selections is a testament to how spoiled the Boston area is when it comes to beer.

Prices are actually pretty reasonable. Very few 22s cost more than $7, with many more around $5 or $6. Six packs and four packs are priced normally. Service is friendly but not very knowledgeable and, practically speaking, non-existent. There's usually one person manning the cash register, and that's about it. The place has a clean look, and is generally well-stocked. Unfortunately, if they're out of something, asking when it will be coming back in doesn't yield much beyond shrugs or I-don't-knows.

That being said, this is a great place to go for a few bottles or a good six pack if you're in Cambridge and don't feel like walking to Downtown (Davis T).

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Photo of BeerSox
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Located near the Porter Square stop in a shopping center near a Shaw's grocery store. The place is small and easy to pass up as just another liquor store.

The very back has coolers with mostly six packs in it. There is another cooler that has a few singles in it that are broken from six packs. The main feature of the store for beer is a few shelfs of singles filled with bombers and 750mL bottles. If you walk through the narrow back hallway you will see a walk-in cooler and also another row of coolers with more beers (mostly big single bombers).

The first visit I missed the area in the back with the extra beers and gave it a slightly unfair review, but I have to say after seeing that selection it's definitely one of the best selections in the area.

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Photo of jamie2dope
4/5  rDev +1.3%

For those of you who go to Downtown in Davis Square, I recommend taking the extra 2 minutes to drive to Liquor World, as they have great beers that are usually a couple dollars cheaper than in Davis. Parking is a pain, but worth it. Store itself is small, but has lots to offer. Service depends on who you get. Theres one guy who will take your name and number down to let you know when a certain beer comes in. On the other hand, theres a middle aged cashier who usually finds something to bitch at me about every time I go in. Some brands they usually carry include Founders, DFH, Magic Hat, Smuttynose, Lost Abbey, Left Hand, Oskar Blues, North Coast, Berkshire...and lots of great imports such as six packs of Weihenstephaner Hefe. Worth a visit for sure.

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Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Stopped here based on the buzz about KBS and BS being available. "Pimping" got me in the door, in other words. Would not have made the trip to Porter Sq. otherwise. I knew already there was no KBS, but didn't see any Breakfast Stout, either, though they had Devil Dancer.

Grubby looking inside, but grubbiness isn't listed among the items to numerically score. ;-)

It's a somewhat limited selection because of their size, but very eclectic, very responsive to people's actual needs. They had one cooler that had loose singles, the rest of the coolers were packs only (or single bombers). One of the employees broke a 4-pack for me since what I wanted wasn't in the singles, the checkout clerk was snarky about it. Weird vibe--don't they work for the same boss? I left totally satisfied, but was surprised by the attitude.

Regarding prices, I found that they were notably cheaper than other places inside 128. And they have a 10% discount for 6+ items.

I'll be back for the selection and the reasonable prices + discount. Another place I use close to home has a better selection but ripoff prices and no discount.

So far, the best place I've found inside 128.

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Photo of YonderWanderer
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%

As others have mentioned, despite the not-so-appealing look from the outside, this store delivers where it most counts - selection. Walking in, you pass through a lengthy aisle of wines, and then you hit the first of the beer coolers. They're full of your usual macros, but also many local craft brews, as well as some national ones. Around the corner from that is where the real fun begins - a shelf full of Belgians stands opposite 4 coolers of bombers with an excellent selection. Again, local and national craft brewers, as well as some imports make up the selection - Great Divide, Left Hand Brewing, Middle Ages, Rogue, Stone, and more. Price is average for the Boston area. Service was okay - was asked if I needed anything, but that was about it.

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Photo of Damian
4.7/5  rDev +19%

Don't be fooled by the cruddy looking facade. Liquor World is a top-notch liquor store that carries an array of the world's finest beers. They even have a "We sell good beer" sign out front to assure you of this. Because of the limited space that the beer section has here, the store tries to focus more of quality than quantity. The cooler that is first visible when you reach the back of the store is stocked with a good selection of macro brews and craft beer 6-packs. Most of the real gems however can be found in the "hidden" cooler around the corner. It contains a terrific selection of top-rated and hard-to-find beers (breweries include Southampton, Stone, Avery's, Thomas Hooker, Southern Tier, Two Brothers, Berkshire, Thomas Hardy, Boon, etc.), all at rock bottom prices. You simply will not find better deals at any liquor store in the Boston area (with the possible exception of Trader Joe's - but their selection is far more limited). There is also some shelf space filled with more expensive, cellaring-suitabe beers (Roquefort, Fantome, Oerbier, Rodenbach, Westmalle, etc.). They even make a point to stock highly-desired, limited offerings. (I have purchased both the Breakfast Stout and the Kentucky Breakfast Stout by Founders as well as the Imperial Stout Trooper by New England Brewing here.) The customer service at Liquor World is exceptional (when Joe and/or Tom are around). Joe (the beer manager) and Tom are the "beer guys" here. They are not only incredibly helpful and friendly, but they will give you their personal opinion on just about any of the beers they carry. Joe will even take your phone number and call you when a beer you want comes in. As for the store itself, it is a bit dingy and cramped (especially if you are browsing the cooler in the far back). Overall, however, this is one of my favorite places to buy beer in the Boston area. If you live in Cambridge, Somerville or Medford, I highly recommend you stop by this (relatively) hidden gem.

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Photo of eveninghawk
4/5  rDev +1.3%

This has definitely become my neighborhood beer store for stocking up. The variety packed in this place is right up there with my other favorites in the city, Joe does a great job, and he and the other beer enthusiast at the register are always willing to talk up good beer, chat about views on beers mentioned on BA, and essentially take suggestions at will. I've seen a lot of flexibility in this store, and every time I go in there I suffer from "too much choice" paralysis. I LOVE getting that out of a beer store.

The prices here range from average/fair to a steal, and this is definitely one of the places I hit up when buying gifts for out of town friends. Beware the Saturday evening line at the register, and Sundays can be equally frantic close to closing.

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Photo of brewandbbq
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Located in the Porter square shopping center, which is 1/10 of a mile from Davis square in Somerville. An easy walk from Redbones, Downtown W+S, etc.
There is a large parking lot for the shopping center, but be prepared to stalk and prey for a space.
The store itself is long and narrow, with the beer being in the back.
At first glimpse you might be dissapointed in the selection, as there seems to be only one cooler and a small amount of other shelf space devoted to beer....But keep looking, there is an additional shelf of Belgians, and further back there is more coolers filled with brew. It almost seems like you are entering the "employee only" back section of the store..
The stock looked well rotated 'cept for some HOTD Fred being blown out, and variety is decent, but probably not even a third of what Downtown stocks. However, the prices are much better than Downtown, and the beers certainly seem to get more love here.
Can't really comment on the service, as there was a guy chowing down in the back, and another younger guy stocking the shelves. I didn't ask for help and no one offered. Fair enough.
Cash up was quick and the lady was nice.
I'm not feeling the high "selection" marks that others are posting..

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Photo of taez555
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%

Located in the Porter Square Shopping Center/Strip mall across from CVS, right next to Radio Shack, Liquor World might be hands down the most deceiving liquor store in the entire world. Camouflaged from the outside as ghetto, 40 in a brown paper bag, type liquor store where you might be lucky to find Sam Adams, is quit possibly one of the best liquor stores in Cambridge.

Small long narrow store with only 2 aisles, it starts with your typical shelves to the ceiling liquor and wine with what at first appears to be only a couple beer coolers against the back wall. Upon further investigation there is actually an entire extra set of coolers to the left side heading back toward the storeroom packed with the most craft singles I’ve ever seen in a cooler. On top of that there’s a shelf to the left of that with a huge selection of Belgians beer, and then.... there’s even more Craft singles in the middle on the aisle.

So how’s the beer selection? Well... this place isn’t a Warehouse, but they pretty much have it all and then some. Craft, Belgian, Unibroue, German, English, Micros. Founders, Stone, Dogfish, Oscar Blues, all the Trappists and Abbeys, I mean honestly the list goes on and on. On top of that prices seem to be fairly cheaper than most of places in town. Pretty much everything was a dollar or two cheaper than Downtown Wine and Spirts right down the street.

This place might win as the hidden Jewel of the decade. Fantastic selection, good prices and parking. I’ll definitely be coming here a lot more in the future.

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Photo of jtell
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%

This is becoming one of my new favorites. Joe is a really nice guy and definitely trying to make his customers happy. Prices are generally lower than most other places and the selection is quite good. The side with all the bombers and big beers is pretty well hidden and I think a lot of people miss it. Can find a couple beers that are aged and have been refrigerated the entire time. Really a good shop that is only getting better. I guess it isnt one of my hidden jewels anymore but they definitely deserve the press.

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Photo of bjohnson
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%

Have been here a bunch of times but just realized the breadth of their selection when I "went around the corner" to the other side of the cooler--figured now was a good time to rate this place. The place is long but narrow stuck in between a couple of your ordinary mall stores near the Shaw's and across from the CVS. Good selection of wine and booze adorn the side walls and the middle aisle as well. Didn't talk to the staff, and they didn't seem to interested in me being there. I got carded which hasn't happened lately.

Selection was very good and well priced. Quality was also very good. Beers they had in stock:

Rouge, Smutty, Boulder, Rapscallion, Concord, Cisco, Berkshire, Anderson , McNeils, Avery, Ommegang, Three Brothers, Magic Hat, Gearys, Left Hand, Lagunitas, Unibroue, Thomas Hooker, Z Street, Victory, Sierra, Wachusett, harpoon, Southern Tier, and your normals as well.

Liquor World is convenient being right in Porter Sq. The selection isn't as large as say, Downtown in Davis, but I believe the quality is better. Check it out if you get a chance and don't forget to go around the corner as the selection of beer almost doubles. It seems there are more better beers in the side fridge.

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Photo of Lnedrive14
2.75/5  rDev -30.4%

Found this place on my weekly trip into Porter Square to go food shopping. I wasn't expecting much from the outside, but was pleasantly surprised upon entering. They have all the regular micros (Victory, DFH, Magic Hat, etc.) but a surprising selection of actually interesting things: Rogues XS, Rare Magic Hat's, Avery, Stoudt's Fat Dog, HOTD, and other stuff I can't remember. All in all, it's actually a pretty decent place to get some beer.

However, the people in there were so rude! There was a sign about not breaking six-packs, but it was ambiguous as to whether they didn't want them broken in general or just in the particular case. The woman up front yelled at me and basically told me I was dumb. There was one other gentleman in the store and he didn't even look my way for the whole 15 minutes I was there. If you've really gotta get some decent beer in a pinch, it isn't a bad place, but I would almost avoid it just because the people were so rude.

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Liquor World in Cambridge, MA
Place rating: 3.95 out of 5 with 33 ratings