Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Woodman's Markets - Madison West

Your Rating: None
Woodman's Markets - Madison WestWoodman's Markets - Madison West
64 Ratings
Woodman's Markets - Madison WestWoodman's Markets - Madison West

Type: Store

725 S Gammon Rd
Madison, Wisconsin, 53719-1345
United States

(608) 274-8944 | map

No notes at this time.

Added by cokes

View: Place Reviews | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 64 |  Reviews: 42
Photo of Rilesmiles
3.39/5  rDev -16.7%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 3.25 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4.5

While the selection is as good as any big box grocer, it's not necessarily a pleasant place to buy your beer. The liquor section in general is spirit and BMC-centric, and the clientele and employees reflect that. Still, if you're looking for something, anything, that's typical in this distro market, it'll more than likely be available here at a good price.

 358 characters

Photo of maundythirsty
3.4/5  rDev -16.5%

Stopped in hoping to find Lake Louie and Central Waters goods, but I did not. I also felt Class A screwed, but I have to take a little bit of the blame there. I think. Maybe not. Probably not.

Despite that, Woodman's is always good for some beer, and Madison's Woodman's West may be better than the average Woodman's. Two mile-long walls packed with mainline stuff and some twelve-packs and cases of better brews from Wisconsin -- like New Glarus and Capital. Standard-for-Woodman's samplers of Sam Adams and Flying Dog. The third wall -- I believe the north wall, on the same wall as the entrance -- is a cooler full of domestic goodies from all over the place. Multiple offerings from most. Wisconsin is pretty much represented in toto, minus LL and CW as mentioned. Also Lagunitas, Three Floyds, Goose Island, Rogue, Left Hand, Two Brothers, New Holland, Great Lakes, Smuttynose, Abita and more. Facing the domestic cooler is a smaller but very substantial imports cooler with scads of Asian and European beers I did not recognize. There was an impressive collection of Unibroue, maybe seven beers, for sale in packs.

Lots of big-bottle singles for sale over there, but it was the domestic bombers and singles I was excited about. Singles are $8 purchased as six-packs, and I went nuts scooping up one of almost everything I hadn't tried. I filled four packs, probably half the varieties on hand. However, in my joy (greed?) I did not check labels. I've had many good beers from this haul, but last night I had two undated pales that I believe were fading and poured a beer that smelled off. Tonight I was powerfully disappointed by an Otter Creek Pale Ale that was dated as brewed 51 weeks before I bought it and a New Holland Zoomer that was thoroughly, depressingly skunked. It was a real bummer to drive a couple hours back home with a new stash only to find out that I may have to chuck bottles as I pull them out of the cupboard.

Service stays high because when I arrived the line was backed up, but they called in extra checkers and zipped everybody through.

 2,077 characters

Photo of Stevedore
3.41/5  rDev -16.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

Basically, this is a liquor warehouse. The guys stocking the shelves have no real idea what our beer geek's latest whalezzz are, or that there is a such thing. But this is a perfect place to go browse for beer, look stuff up on your phone, and either walk out with nothing or walk out with a cart full of beer. The selection is deep here, and I always appreciate the fact that prices are about $1 less than other places in Madison- but don't forget that Woodman's is cash-only. Highly recommend when you're going in for stuff you want to stock up on, e.g. you have had these beers already, like the New Glarus fruit beers or something like that. If you are hankering for something new, this isn't a bad place to go but I would still suggest going elsewhere.

 757 characters

Photo of tyleeis
3.5/5  rDev -14%

Photo of taylorhamrick
3.5/5  rDev -14%

I came in here, it was only like 100 meters from where I was staying, to see what it was all about. The selection was enormous, I mean enormous. There were a couple of aisles of craft beers, and singles of certain beers were even available - not quite as many as I could find in other places, and there was plenty of beer that wasn't the sort of rare releases you really scour the stores for. This was kind of exiting. There didn't seem to be any help, especially not any knowledgeable employees. This was just too big to have any. There were only two working when I came in, and those two were either at the register or at the front where the liquor was located. The beer was mostly craft, and I mean most anything from Wisconsin was available, but a few nice things were missing, the rare releases weren't available upfront. But I mean, if you're in a hurry and you know what you want, you can head here and probably find it for a decent price.

 946 characters

Photo of anell213
3.59/5  rDev -11.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 4.5

Atmosphere: Not fancy looking, but every time I walk in I get giddy with excitement at the sheer size of the place.

Quality: Good. Large import section, huge microbrew section, lots of mini-kegs, etc. My big problem is that they don't seem to get as many of the limited release bombers that Star or Steve's gets.

Service: Worst part of Woodmans. The staff (if you can find any) always seems inconvenienced if I ask them for anything, and they aren't particularly knowledgeable about their products.

Value: Best prices in Madison, hands down.

 545 characters

Photo of sprucetip
3.64/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 2.75 | quality: 4 | service: 2.75 | selection: 4.5

Woodman's is a huge mega-box store. Just the liquor section is pretty big. Atmosphere and service are commensurate with the big-box store experience. Prices are very reasonable. The selection of midwest regional beers is impressive, and the prices better than about any place else I've seen in the region. The specialty beers selection is modest, and mostly midwest, but not completely. There were definitely some not so easy to get brews, but that is not their schtick. They cover their bases with some of each style, and the standard bearers for foreign countries. But where they are really good is providing quality regional 6 packs at good prices.

 651 characters

Photo of daledeee
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%

I love going to Madison. My wife goes for quilt fabric so I get to go for beer! Fair tradeoff huh?

This is one huge grocery store with one huge liquor/beer department. They have a great selection of American micro, macro and imported.

Unfortunately, they help was nonexistant, the checker was grouchy and would not greet me and I bought some skunky beer.
I bought 8 kinds of beer but one bad one is too many.

 415 characters

Photo of miskatonic
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%

Visited this place last night on the recommendation of other area BA's - I was pretty happy with the selection, although not being a Great Lakes area native I didn't recognize as many of the beers as I expected to. Definitely exciting to see so many local breweries and how well they are all represented - as mentioned before there was no Lake Louie, but that probably has more to do with a bad relationship with the distributor than the Brewery (anyone know the story or who the distributor is?). I definitely was impressed to see all the 5l mini-kegs, especially the Einbecker Mai-bock and the Reisdorf Kolsch. The import selection was pretty lame though - there were beers from various importers that are nice to see (St. Bernardus abt12, Einbecker) but many other amazing beers from the same importer were missing (Brasserie des Rocs, Zum Uriege) so maybe they could steal some space from the macros (do you really need three full doors of AB cans) and increase the imports, especially the specialty Germans and Belgians. Overall though compared to the average liquor outlets around Madison, or even the more savvy stores this place has a leg up on selection and value (great lakes sixers were all $5.00 even!?!) - I'll keep shopping around for comparison during future visits to Mad Town, but Woodman's will be my backup for guaranteed selection.

 1,351 characters

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.74/5  rDev -8.1%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

Was in the souhtern madison area and decided to stop out to this store to see what beers I having been missing out on in the madison area. This is my first time shopping for beer in Madison, Wisconsin.

Woodmans always has been a good price for beer and i was thinking that the selection should be great since Wisconsin is such a great beer state. Was i right, this place has an amazing selection of craft beer from every corner of the USA. Oskar blues and Boulevard were 2 breweries that really surprised me at this store. I will be stopping here again. I easily could have bought 2 large boxes full of beer in this store.

 623 characters

Photo of ejimhof
3.74/5  rDev -8.1%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Photo of bigred89
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of EvilKeith
3.8/5  rDev -6.6%

Woodman’s West in Madison has been rumored to have a better selection of beers than any of the other Woodmans’ locations in the area. I can tell you that the rumor can now be called a fact.
From the exterior this location looks just as big as the stores in Onalaska or Madison East. There is a slightly different sign featuring a smiley faced sun character at this location.
The direct entrance to the beer/ liquor department is located to the left of the main store entrance. This store in a store is still impressive in its size. Along the left wall the import beers begin with singles and sixes. German, English and Belgian breweries are represented with a good variety of styles.
At most of the Woodmans’ I have been to the imported beer section ends along the left wall. A nice feature of this store, that sets it apart from the others, is the presence of an addition aisle of quality imported beers.
Along the back wall there are vast quantities of quality beers from across the United States. There is a very good selection of beers brewed regionally and in Wisconsin.
This is probably the place that you have to go to if you are looking for beer in Madison.
The negative in all of this is the complete lack of the Lake Louie line of products.

 1,265 characters

Photo of dancinwillie
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

Living in and around the Madison area for the last 5 or so years, I've started taking this place for granted. Even with the new gigantic liquor section. But make no mistake, this is the place to go for amazing variety in Madison.

They have just an amazing selection here and it's laid out very well. You've got your domestic macros, followed by huge assortment of domestic micro/craft beers. Then a little section devoted to building your own 6-pack, which is directly over the larger singles section. Then at the end, a good selection of Wisconsin craft/micro's. Then you're while your thinking "that was really awesome, time to check out" you walk down the other side, and they have a load of craft imports on that side.

Fantastic store for beer lovers, I always feel a bit like the kid in the candy store. I don't think I've ever made it in and out in under 20 minutes. I just browse and browse, and change my mind, and go back and forth.

But as previous reviewers have stated, they don't have Lake Louie, which is a curious omission, and I have never been asked if I needed help, or even seen an employee over in the beer area. Also, the lines sometimes get crazy long, and they don't call for backup, so if you're getting a big haul, just grab a cart, so you don't have to hold cold beer for 20 minutes.

But these are small issues really, when what I come for is the beer, and they have it like no other place in Madison!


 1,441 characters

Photo of Ek0nomik
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

The west side Woodman's is always a good spot to stop at for a few bottles of beer. Although the place is usually crazy busy for groceries, their liquor department is pretty calm every time I visit.

They have a nice selection of bottles from various Wisconsin breweries, Midwest breweries and the rest of the country. Their prices are also pretty reasonable. I think this is the cheapest place for picking up a bottle of New Glaurus Belgian Red or Raspberry Tart. They also have a good selection of some of the well known Belgian beers.

If Woodman's was just a tad closer I'd be there every week.

 598 characters

Photo of Realale
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

Very nice selection of local beers in the super-grocery store. The beer/wine/liquor section is a seperate part of the store with its own entrance - look for the signage to save yourself a significant walk.

Beer selection is both sides of the farthest aisle from the entrance. One side is dedicated to imports, the other to domestic craft. All of the Wisconsin beers are grouped together and take up about half the length of the domestic section. Everything is coolers except for a stack of specialty 12 packs and seasonals which runs the length of the aisle.

Outstanding selection of local stuff, but no Lake Louie, and some of the basic New Glarus line-up was missing (Uff-da). The make your own six pack section was seriously picked when I was there (Sunday evening), but I was still able to cobble one together. Good stuff in the non-Wisconsin domestic craft section. I didn't bother with the imports as I was picking up a load of Wisconsin beer.

Most everything seemed well cared for, and no out of date bottles were noted, but a few of the singles I got had seen better days. Service was non-existent with the only employee present being the cashier. Sadly, this qualifies for "average" service in my book. Prices were definitely on the cheap side as befits the mega-grocery image. Big kudos for keeping almost everything cold though. Will definitely revisit on my next trip.

 1,389 characters

Photo of cokes
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

Best selection in Madison, hands down. The mix and match six packs are an incredible deal (assuming the cooler is well stocked). Best prices too.
Most anything from the region. And a good survey of brews from across the nation. Just tons of stuff. It would literally take years to get through it all. New stuff all the time.
It is a grocery store, so staff is only present to ring things up. Friendly and accomodating, but far from scholarly when it comes to beer. Still, the little things shine, like encouraging oktoberfest face-offs with the aforemention mix and match deals.
The Import (vintage) beer cooler is impressive as well. Load of Belgians and other stronger brews, domestic and otherwise.
Great place.
But the policy is cash or check, only....it is a good thing because it tends to limit my spending.

 821 characters

Photo of JeffKrenner
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

Stopped here on the way to Chicago on Sunday, 08/06.

Tons of good stuff that I can't find elsewhere here. Mad River, Fish Tale, Sprecher premium offerings, Eisphyre, etc etc. Huge cooler filled with microbrew 6 packs which is followed by a big bank of cooler space with assorted singles for 1.69 each. Good selection of 6 packs and mix packs. The singles selection seemed very picked over, but that easily could have been since it was a sunday afternoon it got whiped out over the weekend beer rush.

Best find there was Fish Tale 10squared Anniversary Reel Ale, which is retired. Wish I would have bought more of it than I did.

Only downfall of this place is that there wasn't a person working to be found other than the cashier, who was backed up.

 758 characters

Photo of ethosx19
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

Woodman's has the best prices in Madison on food, and more importantly, beer. I get a mixed six pack every time I come in. Selection is good for imports and regional beers. The staff can't always answer my questions, but the low prices are what keep me coming back.

 265 characters

Photo of Sixpoint
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

There are a lot of people who claim this is the best selection in Madison, but I can't agree. I think Steve's Liquor on Mineral Point is the best, even though the volume of beer is not as impressive as Woodman's.

Woodman's West struggles because 80-90% of the beer is stuff you would never want to drink. They carry just about every brand of macrobrew imaginable, and it occupies most of there shelf space.

There is one long continuous aisle of domestics, but for the most part, many of them are not that impressive. They have stuff like New Glarus, Flying Dog, Summit, and Goose lsland... but in the Midwest, you can get those anywhere.

Their imports are lengthy, but once again, they're not that impressive. They have the traditional Belgian Ales (like Chimay, Youngs, etc.), but the last time I was there, nothing extraordinary.

You can always count on them having an ample supply though, and the beers seem to be kept cold and are rotated regularly. Overally, you probably won't be disappointed, unless you are snobby like me.

 1,044 characters

Photo of Golden2wenty1
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%

Two locations here in Madison, West Side on Gammon Rd. and East Side on Milwaukee St. For being a grocery store liquor department, it is truly a sight to behold. The place is simply enormous with a gigantic selection of liquor and wine and tons of beer as well. The whole perimeter of the store is beer, with hundreds of feet of cold cases of mostly swill beer but a very solid selection of the good stuff too. Just about every Wisconsin micro available, a solid representation from regional micros and a few coastals. Have a very nice singles cooler as well, mostly imports, but a few domestic crafts as well, i.e. Rogue, Bear Rep. About 10 brands of mini-kegs which can be fun. The prices are without a doubt the lowest around for beer and liquor alike. If only there were a campus location, I'd go broke. Perhaps it's better that way. Defintitely give it a look if you're in town, along with Riley's and Steve's for the harder to find singles.

 946 characters

Photo of emerge077
3.94/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

Visited this location yesterday, and I have to say, it's the best one i've ever been to. HUGE place. Spent a good while perusing the beer aisles on the far left. Cases divide the center, but on the right side is the import cooler, the left wall is the domestic. Cold cases were along the back wall.

Selection was great for the regional micro stuff. In most cases there were at least 3 varieties from a brewery, up to 10 or so from New Glarus. Some obscure smaller stuff I hadn't heard of, like Ilja's and South Shore. Old Chub 6-packs, but there was an empty spot for Dale's Pale. Good quantity of NG Unplugged, even a couple cases on the floor. Lot of empty spots in the singles section unfortunately, and I was told that you couldn't pull singles from 6-packs. Tyranena, Ale Asylum, Viking, and many other WI micros. Good import variety as well, although I didn't spend as much time there. They did have Rochefort 6,8,10. Checkout was quick, sort of impersonal. Eventually got a box for my beer, which was good. Recommended.

07/2008: Stopped in to find many new and obscure regional micros, including Stone. Got some help finding a case of Dancing Man during the afternoon on a friday. Might be the best Woodman's in WI...

 1,227 characters

Photo of s_wit
4/5  rDev -1.7%

Photo of beveragecaptain
4/5  rDev -1.7%

I probably buy more beer at Woodman's than anywhere else. There are two reasons for this: 1. Woodman's has the best prices around. 2. Woodman's has the largest selection around. Not the best selection in Madison, but surely the largest. During a trip to Woodman's, I typically follow the same route, which I'll describe. As you walk in the door, follow the wall to your left past all the crap. You'll notice an especially large selection of 40s along the way. Ignore them. Once you reach the corner, that's where the good stuff starts. Almost all of the beers is in chilled.

The wall starts with with imported singles. Some weird Eastern European beers you never see. The usual lineup of English beers, although more than you usually see in one place. This is followed by some specialty singles of American microwbrews, like Great Divide, Fish Brewing, and Rogue. Next comes a pretty good selection of Belgians: several St. Bernardus, Rochefort, etc. This wall of singles ends with the biggest and best selection of German beers I've seen. All the standards, and plenty of rareties. If continue along this aisle, there are some six and four packs of imports.

Crossing over to the other side of the aisle, you will see a pretty good selection of local beers in six packs. This is followed by a great selection of domestic singles, and you can make your own six pack for $7.50. I've sampled a lot of tasty beers from this cooler that I might not have tried otherwise, like Arcadia London Porter, several Founder's beers, and several beers from Lakefront. This wall ends with a good selection of non-local American beers in six packs. Lots of Bells, Great Lakes, Dogfish Head, Great Divide, and many more. If you continue along the back wall, there are a few Sampler packs from good breweries, but most of the rest of the beer here is crap.

Service is fine. They leave me alone for the most part, which is fine by me. As I said earlier, prices are generally better than any other place in Madison. For beer stores in Madison, I pretty much get everything I need between Woodman's, Steve's, and Riley's

 2,109 characters

Photo of bpfrush
4/5  rDev -1.7%

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Woodman's Markets - Madison West in Madison, WI
Place rating: 4.07 out of 5 with 64 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.