Big Red Liquors

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Big Red LiquorsBig Red Liquors
46 Ratings
Big Red LiquorsBig Red Liquors

Type: Store

418 N College Ave
Bloomington, Indiana, 47404-3829
United States

(812) 332-0653 | map

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Ratings: 46 |  Reviews: 26
Photo of homerman9
5/5  rDev +18.8%

Photo of mattknueven
5/5  rDev +18.8%

Photo of ToddGingerich
5/5  rDev +18.8%

Photo of mgeraci
4.86/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

This Big Red is awesome. If your a Bloomingtonian you know Big Red is all over the place, but know that or not this is the one to go to regardless of the others. The layout is huge and well organized. The beer selection is great from the commoners to some very good rare brews. I have been working on a list of some of the must try best beers in the world and they had a nice selection of some of these rare brews. This store will have my regular patronage. Keep it up Big Red you do well for a chain!

 501 characters

Photo of MikeFox
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%

Photo of DAdams
4.75/5  rDev +12.8%

Photo of toolbrew
4.7/5  rDev +11.6%

I frequented this store while living in Bloomington for 3.5 years. Please note that there are ten(?) other satellite stores in Bloomington, but this is the largest, with the best beer selection, and a walk-in beer cooler.

Also keep in mind that Bloomington is home to Indiana University, and as such, there are loads of Bud, Miller, and other cheaper beers that mean you get more buzz for less money.

Aside from those beers, Big Red has a great selection of microbrews and craft brews. I used to order beer for a restaurant there so I know the distributors they go through and what they have at their disposal.

The walk-in cooler that I spoke of has six packs of just about everything they sell warm. One wall is microbrews, the other are more commercial brews for college kids. In between are kegs and 30-pack cases.

There are several reach-in coolers that have single bottles of about everything they offer. And bombers (22oz) bottles too. Then of course the 40oz bottles. There are also warm singles.

Big Red does a great representation of Stone, Bell's, Upland, Two Brothers, many Colorado brews (not New Belgium), and many other Indiana brews.

They typically have one person working who is in charge of the beer stocking and is very knowledgeable about what you are looking for.

Big Red offers beer tastings here and there. And they also have a great selection of liquor and wine.

For the money I spent I got great bargains. I only wish there were a place here in Michigan that was that cheap. Of course Michigan tax laws are huge.

 1,551 characters

Photo of mightyjoemoon
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%

I'm mainly writing this review to point out to Bloomington drinker's how lucky they are that they have two (including Sahara mart) beer venders which carry an impressive selection of imports and crafts. Big Red has the cold beer and also a better selection of micro brews of the two. The prices are a bit higher here as well but not on everything. I was reading reviews of a liquor store in Fayetteville Arkansas (my wife's home town) and was shocked at how their biggest liquor store had the same rating as Big Red. Big Red carries an order of magnitude more selection of beer than the comparable store in Fayetteville. I also don't know of a comparably good liqour store in Knoxville, Tennesse (my home town).

Big Red carries all the trappists available in the states including the full run of Rochefort and Chimay. They have a good selection of UK ales, German lagers and wheats, Czech pilsners and lagers, and the previously mentioned seasonally rotating and excellent coverage of micros. Basically they have a wide enough selection of beer here that you could come in regularly for 6 years picking out bottles that are new to you and not run out of options.

Sure you have to provide two forms of ID on weekends, fight past hordes of douche bags, and walk through the shadows cast by monuments built out of keystone cases but if you love beer you are lucky that you can come to a store with such a good selection. The staff is also helpful, knowledgeable and friendly.

 1,475 characters

Photo of wdberkley
4.6/5  rDev +9.3%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Photo of samsbinky
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of backfat
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

been wanting to go to this beer emporium for quite some time now. when i visited bloomington, i would ask people where a good place to buy brews could be found (as i often do), and big red was always mentioned. i had gone to big reds smaller locations but never got around to going to this one. wow. beverage depot. i was greeted right away and asked if i could be helped finding something. i kinda went blank and thought about asking for something ridiculous like apocalypse cow from FFF, but i just asked to see what new beers they had. excellent selection, especially warm. new holland (which is a rare one to find in Indiana) was there. founders, FFF, bells, victory, sierra nevada, boulder, dark horse, and a variety of indiana beers. great place. cheers!

 760 characters

Photo of hoosier222002
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Visited here on several occasions during the holidays and other such in-law events. I think this one is actually 418, or atleast that is what I am reviewing. Located near or on the campus of IU, this is a beer lovers heaven; especially for those out of state where one can find beers not available in ones home state. I always go for the Founders and Bells until recently, and the Stone and DFH WWS and 120min. They have just about everything. Prices are reasonable and cheaper than some places I have seen. They dont allow mixed sixers or breaking up sixers but they have some beers for sale as singles but not necessarily the same ones that are in full sixers. Service is hit or miss. The last time I was in, nobody helped me. The two previous times, someone was there at my beck and call basically. I always make a visit here while in IN, and you should too.

 861 characters

Photo of joe1510
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Stopped in here on a recent visit to U of I. There are a few Big Red stores in Bloomington. The best one is at 418 College. I read some reviews on here so I knew of a good store to stop in. This place was exactly what I was looking for. One LONG isle of American 6-packs with a lot of harder to find seasonals. Across from this isle was long isle of singles, bombers and pints American and English. 5 or 6 cooler doors with a few Belgians, American singles and bombers. Didn't search around the store much. I was in a hurry and on the prowl for some micros that I can't get here in Illinois.

The prices are a little higher than they are around the southern suburbs of Chicago but there was an excellent selection. They also had some closeouts that had my jaw dropping. I bought a couple Rabbid Rabbits for $5.99 a bomber and a couple Morimoto Imp. Pilsner for $5.99. Brian Boru and many others were on closeout too. They were stacked in Bells and Dogfish Head. Case upon case of WWS and 120Min. Not to mention many of the others. Bell's had all the seasonals and a boatload of Hopslam. They carried a ton of Rogue including Old Crusty, Imp. IPA, and Imp. Stout. Many of the local Indiana brewers as well. The day I got there they even got in a shipment of Oaked Bastard.

The staff was helpful and talkative. Knew a good deal about beer and a few others things I asked about. Very professional but friendly at the same time. This place is loaded. I was very impressed.

 1,474 characters

Photo of erz316
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

This is the standard joint I go to to purchase beer and other liquor. Having frequented here once a week for many weeks, the staff has come to recognize me and have ceased with the nagging questions when I present two ID's (except on weekends of course). The selection of cold beer does not really interest me, as it is mostly huge blocks of Keystone, PBR, or other such party assets. They always have someone staffed in there for your convenience to help you find your beer quickly and get out of the cold. While browsing the warm beer someone always will eventually ask you if you are finding everything alright. Though not always as knowledgeable on the certain type of beers you are perusing at the time, they do, however, have one man who seems to know damn near everything about Belgians. One thing I really like about Big Red is the selection of glassware they have. though not big enough to deserve a whole section unto itself, they do stock many nice glasses for popular and good brands of beer that need particular types of glassware. They have a good selection of Belgian Trappist ales, a decent variety of weiss beer, and they stock some important standard UK brewers like S. Smith, Harviestoun, and Fuller's. Aside from A good selection of imports, the American beers (craft) are enough to satisfy most; having many of the top California breweries (Rogue, Stone...ktl). I have yet to run out of good, quality beer (or exciting glasses) from this establishment.

 1,473 characters

Photo of JasonEdelson
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of swamiswamu
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%

This place has improved considerable in the few short years since I graduated. The new renovations feature a huge walkin fridge with a wide variety of regionals, ie Bells, Upland, Great Lakes, FFF, etc, etc. Prices are very reasonable, esp. for Rogue bombers. Above all the staff seems to care about the selection. The checkout attendant was visibly excited about my pruchase of Barley Island Boubon Aged Oatmeal Stout, which turned out to be incredible. My only complaint is they no longer have cases of Rheinlander in returnable cases. Oh well.

 546 characters

Photo of adamhdv
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%

This Big Red has always had what I was looking for in stock (that is, if they carry it). Freshness seems to not really be much of an issue as the location of this place keeps it busy. Has a great selection of 6ers and 12 packs, a lot of which are cold too. Pretty big grocery isle row filled with singles too! The service has been good, always offering to help me find something.

Although, if you're not 40...make sure to bring two ID's and answer questions, gets annoying. Especially when the students are in town, dammit.

Worth a look if you're in town!

 559 characters

Photo of cerevisiaephilus
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%

This store has what I have been told is the biggest beer selection in Southern Indiana. They have a good selection of beer. Belgians include Chimay, Orval, Achel, Rochefort, Delerium, Gulden Drak, Piraat, Corsendonk, LaChouf, Duinen, 8 Lindemans and a couple others. A pretty good German selection, the big three Doppelbocks plus. They could do better on their British beer selection, although they do have most of the Fuller's and Youngs and Sam Smith lines. Their domestic selection is good. The Ommegang beers are $4.99 a 750ml, which I find to be quite nice (I'm not sure if this is standard?). They have SNs, Rouges, Anchor, Stone and then most of the regional beers from the midwest, 3 Floyds, Bells etc. Their staff is quite knowledgeable and the beer manager is very cool and has cards placed around the beer area so you can contact him with questions or suggestions, which I think is pretty cool.

UPDATE: 02/18/04, plans to get Westvleteren 12, Bernadus ABT 12, Westmalle soon...I was told one month. Rogue bombers of Chocolate Stout, Santa's Special, Yellow Snow and two others for $1.99 each!

 1,106 characters

Photo of JamesS
4.3/5  rDev +2.1%

Came in to pick up supplies for a buddy's bachelor party and ended up spending quite a bit more for my own beer selection. They have a wonderful selection of beers from all over the world in a variety of sizes. Singles and six-packs, cold and non-refridgerated, you can find the best of begian ales and scottish ales to a wonderful selection of US beers, including many Indiana brewed. The employees were also excellent with their help, even if they did not have intimate knowledge of all of their hundreds of beers.

 516 characters

Photo of Rado
4.29/5  rDev +1.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4

Photo of mrjmann
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of emwild12
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of zrab11
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of chrismattlin
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

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Big Red Liquors in Bloomington, IN
Place rating: 4.21 out of 5 with 46 ratings