Whole Foods Market - Bowery


82 Ratings
Whole Foods Market - BoweryWhole Foods Market - Bowery

Type: Store

95 E Houston St
New York, New York, 10002-1002
United States

(212) 420-1320 | map

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Added by Billolick on 09-18-2007

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Reviews: 51 | Ratings: 82
Photo of CHickman
4.34/5  rDev +6.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 5

The vibe has always been low pressure and friendly, and I've been there 5 or 6 times this year. The separate beer "store" at the Whole Foods in the Bowery is very impressive with its own registers in the middle that has always allowed me to pay quickly.

Really high quality stuff with small batch, popular craft and macro brands. They have a huge cold section for those wanting to drink immediately and tons of varieties to choose from. Good range that should cover everyone's needs.

Service has always been good, with 2 people there to help and offer advice. Some seem to know a lot about beer and recommend some good stuff if you ask about a style or brand. They even discussed turnover and storage so I got a good feel for how they move product, and it all seems to turn over at a good pace.

Huge selection, has to be one of the biggest selections in Manhattan with a 360 selection around you if you are in the middle of the store. The counter has the bomber specials and new arrivals, and the back wall has the 6 packs, both cold and room temp. They have shelves of singles for mix-a-six with a lot of different beers, and then a whole section of international beers broken down by country (Germany, Japan, Belgium, US, etc.) and style like sours. The growler fill station had 6 beers on-tap, with half IPA's but some unique ones like Oxbow / Coppertail Grizzaca and Evil Twin Table Beer available in 32 or 64 oz. fills. It's nice to see a big selection of Evil Twin and Westbrook beers always on hand, as well as the more established craft middle players like SixPoint, Dogfish Head, Stone, etc.

Value: The prices are reasonable if you know your beer prices, especially for NYC. They always have specials running at this store and the bomber deals are good with some being great like the $6.99 per bottle Evil Twin Even More Denmark that I got last month. If you know your prices then you should do just fine here, and the growler prices are on the low side which is always a plus in NYC.

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Photo of drewone
3.73/5  rDev -8.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4

I would say this is a must stop - (even though it's not my favorite NYC spot) just to experience a whole foods with essentially a whole separate beer store complete with its own entrance and growler fills.

Overall design is nothing special, but fairly well organized and laid out. at least half the beers are in coolers. Is an area the you can buy singles of 12oz bottles and 6 growler fills available. Was happy to get a growler of a kuhnhenn stout. Fairly wide selection with a good turn around. A good first stop, went back a for few more stops (to pick up some Maine beer co).

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Photo of metter98
4.19/5  rDev +2.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Vibe: Some people might be intimated by the long (but deceptively quick-moving) lines at Whole Foods stores, but the Bowery location has its own "Beer Room" and own cashiers so there is never a long wait to check out. It has its own entrance on Houston Street near the intersection of Second Avenue. The main store has its own selection of beer, but the only thing worth checking out is the selection of domestic singles near the cheese section—you can pick up beers there and then continue to the Beer Room and finish shopping. Shopping baskets are available just outside the Beer Room after the main store's cashier area.

Quality: This store gets a lot of customers so most popular beers have a high turnover rate as well as those that are limited releases and sell out quickly. About half of the store has ranks of bottles lined up around windows but I've never much of a problem getting skunked beer from sunlight.

Service: There are usually two or three employees working and I often see them walking around answering questions to customers and recommending beers based on favorite styles or tastes. The store has very convenient hours and is open until 11 pm all week long.

Selection: This store has one of the best selections in Manhattan if you are looking to find a wide range of different types of beers. About three quarters of the beers is available in singles in the form of 12 oz., 500 mL, 22. Oz. or 750 mL bottles. Most singles are stored warm; two coolers are devoted to six packs and cases while another cooler is devoted to singles. They also have a growler filling station with six beers on-tap available in 32 oz. or 64 oz. sizes.

Value: I find prices to be rather reasonable at this store and occasionally you can find sales for beers that they are looking to clear off the shelves (such as Christmas beers in the early spring).

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Photo of Lare453
2.81/5  rDev -31.3%
vibe: 2 | quality: 3 | service: 2 | selection: 3.75

A it's a grocery store so nothing great...

Q mostly fresh but there was some out of date stuff and two of the bottles I got were infected.

S there was one guy there and he was a dick...

S there was a lot of beer but nothing special. Just regular distribution stuff.

V a little high but normal,for the city

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Photo of TrappistJohnMD
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

Stopped in Whole Foods while waiting on friends for dinner at a local restaurant.

Nice, clean store. I live in the beer and retail wasteland of America, so Whole Foods always impress me. Was initially dissappointed with selection as I ran across two small beer areas in the main store. However, there is a much larger beer room just behind the express checkout area.

Beer room is very organized and clean. Arranged according to country. Mostly warm bottles but there is a smaller cooler area. Couple of taps for growler fills available. Also noticed some homebrew supplies. Selection seemed better than what I saw in WF on Greenwich St.

Service was average.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.94/5  rDev -3.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

I would rather take New Beer over Whole Foods any day, to be honest. I guess I'd rather support people trying to support their families than a corporate giant. And that's what Whole Foods is people. A corporate giant. Anyways. Tons of beer to be had here. If you go to New Beer and this place, you are most likely to find whatever you are looking for. Growler system is nice, but I have found the variety lacking at times and have not purchased that many from them. The service has been lacking at times here and good at others. But when it's been lame, it's really been lame.

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Photo of knightlypint
3.84/5  rDev -6.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Nice place to buy beer, spacious. Neighborhood isn't the best, and this WF is a bit off the beaten track. Right across Houston St from DBGB.

I've found the quality of the bottled beers to be as good as it can be; however, I've run across a few bottles of Brits which were beyond their BB4 date. They have coolers but most beers are stored at room temperature. Windows are shaded.

Service is friendly and helpful, although a few of the guys haven't been sufficiently enlightened about beer.

I'd say the best beer selection I've come across in Manhattan, south of 86th St. Selection not quite as extensive as some beer shops in northern NJ but it will more than do. Not as good as Happy Deli either, although HD is OOB. The stock is broken out by nation...US, Belgian, German, UK, Ireland, Scotland, Italy, etc....this helps. My only real criticism is they heavily favor recognizable brand names, with only a small dose of novel stuff. About as good as it gets in Manhattan.

No food.

$5 for a bottle of standard Sam Smith, I consider that a bit pricey. Orkneys are running $6 or $7 a bottle, but Dark Island is available for $5...which is nice. Old Peculiar and Riggwelter for $5 a pint. This is the kind of place you go to for stocking up on solid beers, but figure $6/pint and $12 or $13 for a six. Can't wait for inflation to hit.

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.24/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

This is a Whole Foods so the staff was what I would expect - hipsters - but helpful though not the quickest moving folks when you needed something. Staff seems knowledgeable about the beers.

They have a very good selection of bottles, many available as singles in addition to having a growler filling bar (though no drinking is allowed on premises).

It can be quite busy and hectic depending on the time of day that you go there - I prefer to visit on a weekday evening instead of on a weekend afternoon.

Prices seem to be average.

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Photo of rodney45
4/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Good access, directly across the street from the F train, which works well for me living in queens.

Regular wholefoods type beer department, except expanded. about four, large racks filled with all types of local, domestic, and international beers, mostly singles and 24 oz bottles.

They also have a large, produce style open refridgerator filled with 6 packs and 750 ml's. Homebrew section is by the register, and has a lot of specialty grains. More than i would have expected. They carry a very large selection of yeast, hops. Their dme and lme is a little lacking, but besides that, its all there.

The selection is pretty good, very expansive, but not a lot of rarities. I did find DFH world wide, and some pretty hard to find trappist's.

Service was great, not really anyone rushing you with anything. Mostly chill hipsters. You cant really beat it.

Prices are a little on the high side, but thats what you get when you go to a whole foods. Some things were well priced, but their singles can get a little out of hand, esspecially when theyre charging 4 bucks for a single founders rye ipa, when i can buy a 6 pack for 12 bucks.

Pro's- ease of access, selection, depth, and you really never know what you'll come across if you dig behind some of the older bottles.

Cons- Major amounts of sunlight hitting the bottles, and prices for singles.

Definitely recommend.

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Photo of peensteen
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Nice looking place, like most whole foods its bright and organized. Large selection of refrigerated beers with both domestic and imports. Lots of Belgian bottles as well as a bunch of Mikkeller and Evil Twin. A bunch of domestic 6 and 4 packs as well as bombers but nothing that isn't available at New Beer Distributors for a couple bucks less. You can't get singles from 6 packs unless its from their rack of singles, I did find a few choice singles there. The staff seemed too busy when I was here the second time to answer questions and most answers were short an not much help. I would recomend coming here after New Beer Distributors and checking for anything you missed.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.16/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

This is one of the largest Whole Foods stores I have ever been in. Great looking too, conveyor sushi, chocate counter, gelato, the Whole Foods where I live doesn't even have this stuff.

Still the beer selection is interesting. Peppered through the store are a few small displays. Some even have the six packs of cans and bottles split up for individual sale. However, if you don't go and head to the back of the store behind he express cash registers, you'll miss the big selection.

Selection here is pretty good, but a little pricey. Fairly organized well too. Another surprise was to see brewing equipment and ingredients you could actually purchase.

Foreign selection isn't too shabby either, there's a small few obscure beers on that spectrum also. Prices seem to be in line with the rest of everything else in the neighborhood, nearly of the carbon copy prices you find in DC.

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Photo of superspak
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

When I was down in NYC visiting for a couple weeks, I definitely had quite a few whole foods to choose from to check out for brews. I chose this one because of the location to a couple other places I wanted to check out.

At first I was kind of skeptical after walking into the normal store and finding hardly any beer inside. After walking down Houston, I discovered that there was a whole other part of the building dedicated to just beer and wine! Jackpot

I walked in and they had a nice semicircle of taps lined up. Apparently it was Oskar Blues day or something because half of the taps were from them. Also had a rep there from the company giving out samples. Good first impressions right there.

They had some very large shelve on the left side of the store dedicated to bombers of a large selection of breweries stacked up at least 5 rows high. On the back wall there are open cooler with a ton of six packs, and further down they have shilled bombers sitting in the coolers.

There are a large amount of breweries represented on all of the shelves including locals like captain Lawrence and a few Southampton. Cigar city 750s were also quite numerous.

A lot of selection of imports as well, like Nogne O and tons of Belgians are very well represented. Basically, if it is distributes to NYC, then you will likely find a few or many offering from the brewery available at this location. Very nice and diverse selection of beer at this location.

I wish I would have rated this back when I visited, but overall this is definitely the type of place anyone would want to check out. A big diverse selection of offerings from many breweries; at a good price for being the fact that it is in the middle of Manhattan haha.

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Photo of negroobserver
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

This is an excellent place to shop for brews. The location is easily accessible. The room is large and spacious. In addition to beer they also sells home brewing supplies through Brooklyn Brewshop.

The staff is mostly nice and accommodating. They don't smile much, but they're helpful.

The selection is one of the best in NYC. Hey have a diverse range of beer including Trappists, crafts and generic brand name brews. The prices are reasonable for new york city, but would probably be considered a bit pricy elsewhere.

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Photo of tobelerone
3.94/5  rDev -3.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

This Whole Foods location has the best selection of any of their stores in the city, edging out the Columbus Circle and Greenwich St. locations, the latter being my "home" store as it's right next to my job. As with most locations the service is fine but a little disinterested. They get the job done though.

They have a ton of domestic craft, imports, singles, sixers, etc., and do growler fills, often with very interesting things on offer. They also have glassware, although the selection is not extensive, nor would you expect it to be. Prices range from good to fairly high, it really depends on what you're looking for. There are plenty of oddball European bottles here as well.

The downside here is 1. It's Whole Foods and I find them to be a bit obnoxious to begin with and the clientele somewhat irritating. 2. They don't want you breaking up sixers if they're not already laid out in individual bottles, and 3. the best beer store in the city is practically around the corner (New Beer) and while they don't always have everything WF does at the same time (for instance WF just got Founders Imperial Stout a week or so before NB is getting it), NB has generally much better prices, you can build your own sixers, and the guy who runs it is much more personable.

When I'm in this neighborhood I always make a point of checking out both stores before buying anything. Yesterday I bought stuff in each place; between the two you will certainly find something to love and walk away happy.

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Photo of jonmacklin
4.01/5  rDev -2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

As unbelievable as it may seem, this is the best beer selection I found in NY during my recent visit up there, (I also went to Bierkraft in Brooklyn & Good Beer on 9th) probably b/c whole foods is a big corporate entity and can thus afford more retail space, and therefore stock more beers but I digress....

they pretty much have all the bases covered: cold six packs, impressive array of warm bomber and larger format beers, and what appeared to be a little belgian section. The singles selection was a little lacking and as whole foods is a little corporate they weren't too keen on selling me individual bottles that weren't in the 'single beers section'. I also saw some rarer stuff there too.

If you're visiting Manhattan and looking for good beer, especially if you're taking it back home with you, definitely stop into the whole foods on houston!

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Photo of joefuzz
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I have been to many whole foods before and this ones beer section blows the rest away by miles.

Tons of bottles to choose from domestic and import, growler fills and homebrew supplies! And since its a whole foods and there is so much traffic through there you never have to worry about buying old beer that has been sitting months past its prime.

It is a little expensive on certin items but on others (sixpoint 4 packs) its cheeper than anywhere else, I guess since its a whole foods there using a standard mark up instead of the much hated "this is rare so I can charge more" method.

The staff was very nice and knows their products well, but even if you walk around looking super confused the whole time you will still have to be the one to ask for assistance.

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Photo of beenitty
4.16/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Most of the Whole Foods in the city have some type of beer department where you can get growler fills and a good selection of craft brews.

This is the one you want to visit if possible. They always have very good selections for growler fills and typically have rarities like Zhukov and Abacus show up. You'll pay extra for the rarities on draft, but everything else is very reasonable.

The bottle prices are typicaly Manhattan and you can always take a quick stroll to New Beer if you want to save a few bucks. They'll have everything you're looking for in terms of your regularities of craft. Very nice spread of American and European. Less likely to find a hidden gem here compared to New Beer since they're Whole Foods isn't a wherehouse, but definitely worth a stop if you're in the area.

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Photo of liamt07
4.16/5  rDev +1.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

Out in the Lower East Side, stopped by here on our last day of touring NYC so I could pick up some beer. Great selection of bottles, 5 tap growler station and a whole corner of this little shop dedicated to homebrew supplies (grains, equipment etc.) Service was a bit spotty, no one really offered to help so you've got to chase after them here for advice/suggestions and see if there's anything lingering in the back and not on shelves (I did pester one of the gentlemen and he pulled out a surprise for me from the back - at a 1 bottle limit for this 12oz beer). Large selection but probably not as great as New Beer down the street, and at slightly elevated priced (expect ~$2+ difference on larger format bottles I'd estimate). 6 packs can be broken up. Some special offerings here too that I didn't find at New Beer Distributors that I was quite pleased to run into as well, and a bit more logically organized than NBD as well (in terms of brewery sorting). One of the ladies (Liz, I believe) gave me a hand and pointed out some limited/uncommon beers for me to check out so I appreciated the help. Walked out of here with 7 bombers and a mixer four pack, and the bill came out to $120+, but that may be more of a function of the beers I selected than what's regularly available for sale here. Overall, a place that's respectable with a wide selection, although the service was a bit hands off. I'd certainly come back.

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Photo of Gmann
4.4/5  rDev +7.6%

Located on E. Houston and Bowery, the beer shop is located in the 1st floor corner of Whole Foods. Most Whole Foods have a nice but limited selection. The shop is rectangular in shape with the beer selection around the outside edges, some chilled, most not. In the center is a growler station that I believe has 5 taps. Growler stations are a must. Not a huge space but they utilize it well.

The Bowery's selection is much bigger and diverse. The American craft selection is standard for the better beer shops; good selection but nothing you can't find at another good beer shop. Their import selection is quite good; a bunch of stuff that I don't see make it out to LI. Their Italian beer selection is impressive as well as their Belgian assortments.

The service is good as they have several dedicated employees in the beer shop. The prices are a bit high but its to be expected in Manhattan.

Defitely a must try when in lower-ish manhattan.

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Photo of Neffbeer
4.2/5  rDev +2.7%

I come to this place when I want to get a growler fill, or pick up some fresh American beers (they have excellent quality control). Their import selection is good, but limited compared to New Beer Distributors up the street. They had an excellent selection of Drie Fonteinen, and Cantillon for a while, but that well has apparently dried up for now. The service has been attentive each visit I have made. They have also recently starting selling home brew supplies which is a huge plus for Manhattan. Check it out if you are in the area.

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Photo of r0nyn
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%

Just right down the road from the awesome New Beer Distributors is Whole Foods on Houston. It's got its very own beer section, which is really quite a nice touch!

Right as you walk in, you're greeted by rows and rows of beers from all across the country and the world. There are coolers in the back and a central island with a growler fill station. Behind the island is a shelf exclusively for smaller single bottles, so you can make your own sixer. It's a bit bright, but that's a minor complaint. Everything is neatly labeled and easy to read.

Quality is good, with most beers being within freshness dates and not having the patina of dust that I'm used to seeing at shady bevy stores. Again, the light is probably not doing the beer any favors, but that's what reaching in the back of the rack is for. Selection is quite good for the area, with a lot of domestic and foreign breweries represented. Nothing too rare or exciting though.

Prices are pretty high for what I'm used to, but that's not surprising given that this is still New York City. Some things are reasonably priced, but a lot of the stuff is at least a few dollars above than I've seen elsewhere.

Staff is friendly and helpful. An associate saw me looking forlornly at the Goose Island bottles and asked if I was looking for anything in particular. I asked about GI BCBS and he offered to get me a bottle or two from the back. Quite a nice gesture.

On the Whole (hurr), this place is a great beer store. I think the nearby New Beer overshadows it quite a bit, but it's a very worthy establishment on its own merits. Definitely worth a look if you're in the area.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%

The Whole Foods Bowery Beer Room is one of the brightest spots in the craft-beer world of Manhattan, NYC. But it's not without blemishes.

The room is airy, expansive and well-arranged (perhaps too much so, and too much light). Shelves all around the store divide the beers in styles and countries. There is an entire shelf for England (with lots of whiskey-aged stuff and old ales), another one for Scandinavia and Italy, another one for Germany and so on... great selection of Europeans.

More shelves for American bombers from all over the country with an emphasis on local/regional/Eastern Seaboard brews (good to see small enterprises like Pretty Things or Defiant).

But nothing truly incredible or rare, sadly. Nothing I felt like jumping at before it was gone. Very broad, high-quality selection, but it is missing the surprise factor.

Nice to see Hoppin' Frog from my Ohio, though, didn't know was distributed here. But I'm missing basic things like Flying Dog Double Dog, Weyerbacher Double Simcoe, Green Flash West Coast... there are six-packs of just about any other brewery you can think of in the US, but they miss a lot.

Want Dogfish Raison d'Extra? Nope. Want Nugget Nectar? Nope. Want aged beers? Nope. Like that. They seem to have more rare stuff from Europe (tons of Mikkeller beers) than the US!

Bombers of Ballast Sculpin', however... nice touch (pricey, of course)

Service used to be pretty good, but my experience wasn't great. Lots of Brooklyn hipsters looking confused and being as unhelpful as possible. No one offers helps here.

Prices are high, of course, in most everything.

Oh, the growlers. Usually a good deal for fresh beer. Go for those.

I used to think Whole Foods Bowery was surpassing the nearby New Beer in quality and selection. No fucking way.

Still, an excellent stop and a must for beer lovers!

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Photo of JohnnyChicago
4/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Visited this in my quest to find the best beer store in NY. The selection is good; no beating around the bush, they make it very clear that this is a store for beer geeks. The beer is well organized and displayed and craft and micros are at the center of attention, with BMC stuff tucked into corners.

That being said, the selection is good, but not mind-blowing. Very few sixers and everything is pretty overpriced. I will say, however, that the growlers are a steal: 9-15 bucks for a fill and the jug is free.

Not an excellent store, but it does have its good qualities, and its well-planned layout makes browsing a joy.

Edit: 2/12

Selection has improved, but growler prices have skyrocketed and are now about $10-$15 + the jug. New Beer is a much better growler destination.

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Photo of Augustiner719
3.55/5  rDev -13.2%

Stopped in here today after long hearing about this place and its great growler and beer selection. After walking in, you immediately see a large circle bar with growlers all around it with various tap lines. growlers come in 32 and 64 ounces and are reasonable priced. Beers along the walls in refrigerated and warm sections vary from local craft to imports and are well designated. Prices were a bit high, usually on the 6 packs but single prices for bombers were in line at least with NYC prices. I picked up some saison du buff there and a couple of pretty things items are reasonable prices. Staff help was ok, but nothing spectacular by any means. one of the guys answered questions nicely while the other seemed to be just pissed off and non chalant with trying to help anyone. This place does have a great selection but its noting i would travel into NYC just to go to. 32oz fills are a plus though especially since they are easy to finish off solo.

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Photo of Mosstrooper
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%

This is a great store with a vast selection- the most important attribute in my opinion.

Despite the small size of the store (which can really suck if it's crowded), I could spend all day in the place browsing their selection. They had nearly every beer I could want and, as a bonus, they sell homebrewing supplies in the store.

The service was okay, I suppose- I never asked for help, but was never offered it either. I can't really speak to it much. My total at the register was $22.01 and the cashier who was checking me out gave me my dollar back when I paid her $23, I guess that's a plus.

As far as pricing, some things were priced very well, while some seemed to be way overpriced, however, given the wide selection it may be worth it to overpay once in a while. To any BA living in or visiting Manhattan: this is a place you need to give a look.

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Whole Foods Market - Bowery in New York, NY
4.09 out of 5 based on 82 ratings.
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