PlumpJack Wine & Spirits


24 Reviews
PlumpJack Wine & SpiritsPlumpJack Wine & Spirits

Type: Store

4011 24th St
San Francisco, California, 94114-3715
United States

(415) 282-3841 | map

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Added by SamuraiJack

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Reviews: 24 | Ratings: 30
Photo of oggg
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

I am beginning to understand what Michael Jackson means by "beer hunter". I made the pilgrimage to this quaint wine and beer store in Noe Valley. They have another branch on Fillmore but it does not have beer.

The store was relatively quiet on a Saturday early afternoon. There's only about 6 feet of wall space for beer, among like 5 shelves. Seems small, but they stock the largest selection of Belgians I've ever seen. Westy, Rochefort, St Bernabus, Cantillon, Unibroue, Petrus, etc. They've got the small 11.2oz bottles as well as nice 750ml bottles. There's a bunch of hardcore lambics next to the Lindemans, 2 or 3 Oud Bruins, and a couple of other specials, including a Rauchbier, Dorothy Goodbody stout, Old Engine Oil, and some other rare stuff. I even saw some 3L Double Bastards =)

The only thing I might complain about is that there is ambient light that comes through the front door. It hits the wines at the front, but I'm sure it gets to the beers too. We'll have to see, I haven't opened any of the bottles yet.

The manager is quite knowledgable and friendly. Sadly, on 3/27/04 he was out of Westy. He recounted the story of Westy and how some guy goes to the back of the monastery in Belgian, waits in line, buys as much as they will let him. Then he puts it on cold storage and waits to piggyback it with some other shipper, and brings maybe 300 cases to the States to distribute, of which he gets like 2 cases, but they're gone now and he can't predict when they will come back.

Prices are quite reasonable for these rare imported beers. Don't be surprised if you come out averaging $5/bottle.

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Photo of SeanChouffe
4.85/5  rDev +12.5%

During my last trip to the Bay Area I was on yet another quest for great beers of the world. After researching retailers through Beer Advocate, I narrowed my hit list down to two places. Plump Jack was at the top of my list
Plump Jack was a little hard to find, but worth the search. Parking is horrific, and I had to have y girlfriend circle the block, while I frantically pursed the beer selection. This was the best selection of primarily high-end Belgian beers I have seen in the US. I was able to find some of the the Holy Grails of Belgian beer (at least for a neophyte like me) The had Westvleteren Abt 12 Trappistes Rochefort 10, and other hard to find gems. My bottle of Westvleteren blew up in my luggage, and I have still not had the pleasure of the experience.
The prices are a little high and they do not have some of the more middle of the road brews, but Plump Jack is worth the trip.

 902 characters

Photo of lou91
3.7/5  rDev -14.2%

This is the best place to find belgian beers on a consistant basis. I was in search of xmas beers and they had some great ones including the gouden caroles and st. freuillen which are tough to find. They also had three years of doggie claws and a wide selection of lambics. They also have an extensive selection of british beers including the harvey's and george gale's. Tough to find parking in the area but it is worth a trip. The former owner was a serious beer geek. The new emphasis is obviously wine but their selection was still strong. I found the stone 7th anniversary ale which no one else seemed to carry.

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Photo of SamuraiJack
4.05/5  rDev -6%

The bartender at Toronado turned me on to this place. I asked him where to go for Belgians - he said here. OK... I know it's first and foremost a wine store, and it's in Noe Valley, and it's actually a Yuppy Noe Valley Wine Store to be blunt. But get over it, trust me, it's worth it.

The place specializes in Belgian beers and Vintage Ales. The do have a handful of (high quality and often hard to find) American craft beers, but the majority of their selection is within those areas of focus. As a result, they don't have a massive number of beers. If you want Sierra Nevada, or Rogue, or even Speakeasy you're probably best going to BevMo or Whole Foods or something. But if you've got a hankering for some Belgian... this is the place to go.

On the day I went there, the Belgian selection ranged from the usual suspects (Chimay, Duvel, Orval, Lindemann's) to a really good bunch of other Trappists (Westvleteren, Rochefort, Achel, Westmalle) to a bunch of nice Abbeys (Affligem, Corsendonk, Maredsous, St. Bernardus, La Trappe) to a great Lambic selection (Hanssens, Cantillon, Oud Beersel, Boon) to some really cool and unusual Belgians (Fantome, Binchoise, Chouffe, Vapeur, Dulle Teve) and a couple really large bottles (Jerreboams of Duvel and Chimay). The have Belgian style beers from other than Belgium as well (Allagash, Unibroue, New Belgium).

I didn't pay as much attention to their American beers or their Vintage Ales, but I saw some cool and unusual things in the passing (Lagunitas Solstice Lagunator, Stone 03.03.03 Vertical Epic, Marin White Knuckle Double IPA, Bear Republic Ricardo's Red Rocket -- a bunch of Thomas Hardy and a bunch of Fuller's).

The service can be good... but only if Drew (the beer guy) is there. Otherwise you're pretty much on your own. The other guys are nice. They're not snobs. But they're not super knowledgable.

Put it this way... next time I'm in SF there are two places that my trip is planned around... Toronado and here.

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PlumpJack Wine & Spirits in San Francisco, CA
4.31 out of 5 based on 30 ratings.
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