Beer & Wine Hobby

Your Rating: None
BA SCORE
3.73/5
Good
PLACE INFO

Type: Homebrew

155 New Boston St
Unit T
Woburn, Massachusetts, 01801-6297
United States

(781) 933-8818 | map
beer-wine.com

Notes:
None provided.

PLACE STATS
Reviews:
31
Ratings:
35
pDev:
22.52%
 
View: Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 31 | Ratings: 35
Photo of Jason
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of WoostaBia
4/5  rDev +7.2%

Photo of Longstaff
2.4/5  rDev -35.7%

Just came back from Beer-Wine hobby and I have to say - worst homebrew shop ever. The service is crap - they couldn't care less if you shopped for your supplies there or not as long as they keep pushing mail orders out the door. Called ahead, to see if they would put together my order so I could just pick it up when it was ready. Lady on the phone with a slight accent said that I was better off coming in and getting the grain and crushing it myself. Ok - so much for service. Then I asked if other supplies I needed (yeast and hops) were available, without blinking an eye she responded "oh, yes we have plenty of the items you need." Guess what, they didn't have the freakin yeast I needed. Thanks for the help, now I have to delay my brew schedule so I can go find the yeast somewhere else. Not only that, 10lbs of grain and 4 ozs of hops ended up costing $30 - outrageous when compared to other places in the area. Then there was a little matter when the manager (same lady with accent) tried to rip me off. Called for a tank plug for my corny keg and gave the part number on the phone to make sure they had it on hand. Went to the shop, lady said I wanted something else on the phone which was $8. The tank plug was $25 - a number she picked off the top of her head. I pointed to the item on their website and lady refused to give me the advertised price (which was $12 and in line with prices at other online shops). Told her to shove it where no man would want to go.

You get much better service at a LOCAL homebrew shop. This place may be in the area, but I don't consider it to be a local shop. Hit up Modern Brewer in Cambridge or Strange brew in Marlboro for much better service and better prices.

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Photo of IBUnit63
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%

Now this is what I like - a warehouse operation...

Good ingredients, carefully organized with a decent selection.

Service was quite helpful - for a noob they provided good insight into lengthening the life of LME for me and gave words of encouragement as I face the daunting task of my first batch.

Prices aren't bad for the area - hop prices a little cheaper than I've seen; other stuff maybe more expensive than mail order but with shipping it's a wash, so no big deal. Only beef is that prices aren't consistently marked on the shelf.

Barring mail order this'll probably be my most visited place for stuff within the 128 area. Good, solid supplies with a helpful team.

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Photo of WanderingFool
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%

I've been getting my homebrewing supplies from Beer & Wine Hobby for almost as long as I've been homebrewing. They have a good selection of equipment, beer making kits, fresh ingredients and other supplies. Prices are resonable. The owners are friendly and knowledgable, but seem to cater a bit more towards wine makers. On occassion, their supply's may be low or out of stock.

If you live near Boston this is one of the better shops to find fresh homebrewing ingredients. I would recommend Beer and Wine Hobby to any homebrewer or wine maker.

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Photo of AllThingsNinja
2.75/5  rDev -26.3%

I should have thought about the fact that this shop is tucked away in an industrial park a bit more before making my trip out to this warehouse. When I say warehouse, I don't mean it in a good, or even big box store type of way where there would be miles of shelves of ingredients and toys. This is a warehouse first, and a retail outlet as a second or third priority. Their retail space is poorly organized, and requires the attention of staffers who may or may not be tied up with shipping obligations.

Of course they do take phone orders for customer pick up. That feature might be nice if the shop is on your way home from work.

The prices match their catalog, so browse that to evaluate the prices. You might save yourself a trip to Danvers.

Other reviewers have mentioned that they seem more focused on wine than beer, which is true. They ought to rename their business Wine and Beer hobby.

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Photo of CharlesRiver
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%

Since it is located a couple of miles from my office I tend to pick up supplies here often. The store is very clean and very well lit. They normally have a very nice selection of fresh hops and yeast which is plus to say the least. The service can be hit or miss, depending on how busy they are. They have more wine making equipment and supplies than I have ever seen in one store. The one bonus of doing business here is the frequent buyers card.

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Photo of rowingbrewer
3.15/5  rDev -15.5%

I have used this store on several occasion. when I picked up the ingredients for my first brew, I thought that this place was pretty darn good. they had everything I needed and pointed me in the right direction for items I needed to pick up. Since then I have gone to online ordering. I have compared orders I have made, and I usually end up saving well over 30% by ordering online and paying shipping. this place is a warehouse, with downtown boutique prices. the service is ok, but the savings from online buys far outweighs any benefit of face to face transactions.

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Photo of Sycodrummer
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%

The shop is located only a few miles from my house so it serves as the place I stop by if I need anything last minute. It's basically a warehouse from which you are allowed to shop. Most of the business looks to come from mail order clients. They stock the usuals: a number of varieties of malts, specialty grains, yeasts, and hops. Also LME and DME and a number of starer kits, and lots of accesories. Prices seem a bit high, but the staff always offers to help.

You are likely to find better shops, but it's good to pick up last minute needs. Price is the biggest turn-off for me.

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Photo of gentlebubbles
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%

Tucked away in an industrial park, this is an outlet store for their on-line operations. As such, there isn't a proper storefront, but as I ventured in, I was welcomed by a friendly voice. I found a small store jam-packed and stacked high with kits, ingredients, and supplies. I had the sense that more goods stretched away behind the shop. Set to one side are a few carboys of wine the staff are making on site. Not beer, there's no place to boil anything.

The refrigerator is redolent with the smell of hops. I know that's not necessarily the right storage, but it still smells wonderful. The bags of whole hops looked green and fresh. I had lots of liquid yeasts to choose from. There's a variety of bagged malts and grains.

Way too easy to spend a lot of money here.

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Photo of YonderWanderer
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%

This is my main stopping point when I need materials for brewing. They have a good selection of all the essentials - malts, yeasts, grains, hops, and a large variety of equipment, including more specialized things. It's basically a warehouse that is open to the public, and it seems that most of their sales come from mail order, but the staff that works in the front are incredibly helpful. I've had lengthy discussions with them about brewing certain styles of beer, about types of yeast to use, types of hops, and so on. Incredibly helpful and friendly service, and one of the biggest reasons I'll go back to a place. Price-wise, they're on par with any home brew shop.

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.16/5  rDev +11.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

From what I gather, it's a nice little homebrew store for beer and wine making. Very small place located in a industrial section of the town, but they seem to make the most of it. Everything in the store is as organized as they can be I think, some of the items are impossible to keep straightened out just based on what they are and everything seems to be in good working order. The service was good, my wife got me a groupon for a beer making class that I finally cashed in and we went for the class. The manager teaching the class was very passionate about it. He was good at answering questions and was very patient. After the class he of course offered a "one day only" coupon to buy more stuff in the store if you purchase a specific amount. I did anyway, I'm new to homebrewing, but really want to make the most of it. It was tough getting out of there at the end because most of the people in the class wanted to buy stuff and there were only 2 employees to help out. They had a lot of ingredients, supplies and cleaning products to get you going and plenty of selection. I don't have too much to go by on the prices, but it's cool that they do groupons, so that made it worth it. Kind of a hike for me to get there, but if I had time and was in the area, I would go back.

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Photo of jneiswender
4.65/5  rDev +24.7%

I have been using this place for the better part of a year now mostly through online transactions. The sales process is very smooth and the selection is probably one of the best I have ever seen from one homebrew company.

On a few occasions they have had trouble filling my order (hop shortage worldwide) but for the most part my orders have always been filled and on occasion they have substituted very good products to replace what I have asked for.

The website is easily navigable for the most part. However, I think they could use some work on the products catergory. Things seem misplaced at times.

I also have problems finding other small ingredients kinds of things like sterilizer, Irish moss or corn sugar. They don't seem to be in the most intuitive places.

All that said, the prices and selection are probably the best on the web unless you ebay your ingredients/equipment.

I also get my stuff VERY promptly. Usually only a day or two after I order it.

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Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
2.85/5  rDev -23.6%

This is my primary destination when I need supplies, because I know they'll probably have what I need (except yeast), and it will probably be fresh.

The place is pretty big and decently organized. A lot of their ingredients are individually factory packed. Nothing bugs me more than hops and grains repacked at the store, especially if not in vacuum bags and then dated. A great deal of their hops are locally packed--I avoid those.

Service is hit or miss; if you rub them the right way, they're very helpful, but if they get outsider vibes from you, they're cold towards you. They used to have a nice electric mill, but it broke and they pulled out of the box one of the cheaper hand mills in stock instead of a premium unit (i.e. high volume and calibrated adjustable crush).

They don't carry much yeast, in particular they seem to favor White Labs over Wyeast. But they'll order whatever you want if you give them a call a week in advance. The hops selection is only fair, in both breadth and quantity. I often can't find what I want, or else find just 1 or 2 oz when I want 4 oz.

Prices are notably higher than mail order shops. There isn't really much bargain in their kits. OTOH, their kits are good recipes.

Re-review:

I've been there several times recently. They still don't have an electric mill after almost a year (this is absurd--I can't even imagine cranking 20 lbs of grain by hand!), and they've got bizarre restrictions on buying hops. Shortage or not, other places don't tell you how much you're allowed to purchase. No change in scores, still not impressed, yet I go back ~50% of the time because except for hops and Wyeast they've got everything I need.

 1,680 characters

Photo of SithLantern
4.5/5  rDev +20.6%

Photo of DrinkingDrake
4.2/5  rDev +12.6%

I've only been here a couple times but I order online a lot. The place is not far from me but if I am really busy shipping is not that expensive and it is usually here the next day.

They have a great selection of grains, hops, and yeast. If they don't have what you need they are really good with giving you the best substitution.

As far as equipment goes they have everything a homebrewer would need. I've purchased almost all of my equipment through them and have never had a problem. They have great beginners kits for under $100.

They offer a wider variety of brew kits as well and if you are a part of the newsletter they usually let you know about new kits at least twice a month.

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Photo of bigman147
2.5/5  rDev -33%

I started a braggot last Monday before I was to travel out of town for Thanksgiving and I needed to pick up some supplies immediately (1 inch tubing for blowoff tube since this beer was extremely active). Needless to say I wasn't impressed. First off, when you enter the building, you have to guess were to go. The signage is poor and you feel like you are walking into someone's office.

The selection was great if you wanted prepared beer kits or wine supplies. The layout was confusing as both beer and wine are kindof mixed together illogically. I thought about buying some hops but after looking at the shelf of hop plugs that were brown and very old looking. I decided against it. They have a good amount of stuff if you have time to wander around and look in every nook and cranny. It took me a while to get anyone to assist in locating the tubing (they had run out of 1" tubing). Everyone seemed busy with the mail order side of the business and didn't really pay much attention to anyone in the store. I did hear a conversation between a customer and one of the cashiers and it did appear that they could be fairly helpful to new homebrewers but for more experienced homebrewers you will be frustrated.

Overall, if you are in a pinch and need something immediately, this place is a good option. Prices appear to be high to account for that convenience. If you want to make wine I think this store might be better for you than it is for homebrewers.

 1,464 characters

Photo of joebrewer
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%

Based on visits to Barleycorn, the homebrew shop in Cambridge, Walpole Wine and Spirits, and Beer & Wine; Beer and Wine stands out as the most well-rounded homebrew shop.
Grain, extract, hops, and yeast selections are superior to all other shops, but prices are higher.
Beer and Wine also has a larger selection of other items: brewing equipment, other ingredients, books, and winemaking equipment. Help at Barleycorn's is good, but they don't have the equipment selection that Beer and Wine has. However, Barleycorn's a fair amount cheaper for everyday stuff like yeast.

For brewing ingredients, I find that Beer and Wine is as close to a sure thing in the greater Boston area for having everything I need.

They would be a much better store if they lowered the price on a few items (hops, yeast). $8 yeast vials!

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Photo of adowney523
4.35/5  rDev +16.6%

The people at Beer & Wine Hobby warmly welcomed me to their store. Help was offered and questions were answered.

There seems to be a great variety of kits for particular styles of beer and they offer a great starter kit. The grain selection is pretty good, though I have not been always been able to find the exact grain i was looking for.

Several types of hops in pellet, plug, and whole form. Good selection of yeasts particular liquid yeast.

This place obviously also caters to wine-making. I am usually able to find all the ingredients I want. They also seem to have an excellent stock of equipments for all your homebrewing needs.

I would recommend this place if you live in the area, but there may be better places to place your order online.

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Photo of mkabull
4.65/5  rDev +24.7%

This is the place where I got my start at homebrewing . With their recent expansion they are even better than before . They carry a wide variety of extracts , malts , adjuncts , yeasts , hops , and equipment . The biggest thing they offer is great service never to busy for a question always time to find an item and information for everyone from beginner to expert . They have been a key component for my transition from extract to partial grain to all grain brewer . Good selection great service excellent place to go for whatever your brewing needs .

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Photo of BetterDarker
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%

Great selection of grain, okay selection of White Labs yeast, though what they do have is fresh. Checking out can be a bit of an ordeal as it seems like the guy I always get doesn't know the SKU's very well. A little pricey on the DME, but I love the warehouse type atmosphere. No frills here, just what you need and plenty of it. If you're into making wine they also have lots of kits, and each fall they get fresh, pasteurized with no preservative cider. The staff if is unobtrusive and friendly.

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Photo of CavePainter
4.6/5  rDev +23.3%

This is the way it is done - warehouse style. Makes a lot of sense to me.

Measure your own grains. Search the shelves for kits. Great selection of hops. Lots of beer brewing guides. Buy kits, tubes, wort chillers, bottles, yeast...you name it and they've got it.

Staff is friendly and helpful.

I wish that there was a place like this on the south shore. I willingly went to Beer and Wine Hobby from Plymouth, Ma when I needed supplies. There were a lot of places closer and on the way, but this is the place to go. Now that I am in the Boston area, I still make the trek or order online.

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Photo of abartke
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%

This place is great. I used to go to Homebrew Emporium in Cambridge, but this store is far and away better. They have a good selection of grains, a lot of different yeasts, plenty of kits (some put together by one of their employees), and a fair selection of hops. In addition, they also sell quite a few books and wine supplies. Everything has to be fresh -- they seem to have a very high volume mail order business as well. The employees are pretty good too. Every time I've gone in someone has asked me if I needed help. Good place to go if you are in the area in need of supplies.

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Photo of Britt
4.44/5  rDev +19%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

As most everyone else has stated, the storefront is a warehouse, sort of like a mini-Costco for home brew supplies. Much like a Costco, they don't have absolutely everything under the sun, but you are sure to find what you need. I have only ever purchased via the storefront, so I can't speak to online ordering. I've always found the staff to be friendly and helpful without being overbearing. When I don't have a plan, I tend to walk in and stare at the ingredient kits for a good long while. They will usually ask once if I need help finding anything, but never get pushy or try to sell me anything I don't want. For those who shop in store, they have a Frequent Buyer Program. They keep track of how much you spend in the store, and once you reach $500, you get a $20 gift certificate. A nice perk.

I purchased my startup kit (an Ultimate Beer Brewing Kit with Ingredients) from these folks about three years ago and all of the equipment has proven itself to be durable and high quality. I have stuck to brewing with extracts, so aside from purchasing a brew kettle, the startup kit contains everything I've needed.

I have brewed four batches with their "Recipe of the Month (ROM)" Kits and have been very pleased with the results. They contain high quality ingredients at a reasonable price. I've done the math, and you don't have a specific recipe in mind, you'll definitely save a few bucks buying a kit as opposed to purchasing all of the individual ingredients separately. The instructions that come with these kits could be a bit clearer, but are still very easy to follow.

Overall, a good store with quality ingredients and equipment and friendly staff. A short drive from Boston (provided you don't get stuck in traffic) and complete with ample parking. This is my go-to home brew store.

 1,804 characters

Photo of Norica
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%

Went here today to pick up some supplies. Yes it's tucked in an office park, yeah it probably caters more to the wine side and internet sales. I don't care. I love when sevice people greet you when you walk into a store, ask if you have if you any questions or need help, and then leave you alone to browse. It sounds simple but it's the little things that count in retail. I got what I needed (I'm not an expert homebrewer so my demands are simple), signed up for the newsletter and frequent buyer program and headed for the door. Bonus points for being easily accessible in the Boston area and for ample parking.

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Beer & Wine Hobby in Woburn, MA
Place rating: 3.73 out of 5 with 35 ratings