5 under-the-radar bottle shops
When you need a break from the frenzy of Beer Week, grab a bottle at one of these stops to unwind
Showcases and special tastings. Crazy collaborations and delicious pairings. History lessons and community discussions. Sacramento Beer Week is awash in hoppy, boozy opportunities. But what if you’re looking for a bit of quiet respite from all that celebratory togetherness? Easy: Grab a bottle (or two, or three) and head home for a night of Netflix and swill. Sacramento has no shortage of great places to pick up brews (though you still can’t buy single bottles in Midtown) including the always great Corti Brothers in East Sacramento or any Nugget Market. Following are five other stellar options for a night with a bottle—some obvious and others, well, not so much.
1. Shift Change
This mini-mart-gas-station combo, located near Hollywood Park, used to be just another janky corner stop-and-shop. Not anymore, my friend, not anymore. The neighborhood market still sells gas but, under new ownership, it also boasts a stop-worthy beer selection that includes more than 200 craft beer options from the likes of Track 7 Brewing Co., Modern Times and New Glory Craft Brewery. Plus, pick up a bag of coffee from Insight Coffee Roasters and doughnuts from Marie’s Donuts. It’s kind of perfect, really.
4516 Freeport Boulevard; (916) 731-8010; www.facebook.com/ShiftChangeMarket.
2. Curtis Park Market
Before Shift Change got into the convenience store-meets-craft-beer business, Curtis Park Market, under the direction of owner Keenan Gorgis, handily redefined what it means to be a go-to bottle shop with its generous selection of handpicked brews. If you haven’t stopped in lately, however, now’s the time to add it to your personal beer map. The shop’s expanded in both size and beer scope—the towering rows upon rows of bottles is dizzying. Recent offerings include Valiant Brewing Co.’s Chernyy Medved Russian imperial stout with cherries and vanilla and Dogfish Head Brewery’s Flesh & Blood IPA. Plus, they’ve been known to squirrel away bottles of Russian River Brewing Co.’s still coveted Pliny the Elder. So, you know, it doesn’t hurt to ask if there’s a spare in the back.
2703 24th Street; (916) 456-6488; www.facebook.com/CurtisParkMarket.
3. Pangaea Bier Cafe
Most everyone knows Pangaea Bier Cafe as a must-stop for an after-work or weekend beer paired with small bites. Those who haven’t ventured past the bar or patio, however, would be well-advised to take a peek into its adjoining bottle shop. It’s packed with hundreds of selections, including many of the cafe’s tap favorites. There are lip-puckering sours, deep, dark stouts and quite possibly almost all the Belgian ales you can dream of. Stuck on what to buy? Ask your bartender for some friendly suggestions.
2743 Franklin Boulevard; (916) 454-4942; www.pangaeabiercafe.com.
4. Tallac Bottle Shop
On the surface, this aging South Sacramento bottle shop doesn’t seem like much—what with its fading posters, flashing neon signs and other remnants of typical liquor store fare (junk food, cigars and lottery tickets). But, nestled amid its generous selection of champagne, wine, whiskey, 40s and football game-ready six packs is a small but not-too-shabby craft beer selection. Look for choices from Russian River Brewing Co., Drake’s Brewing Co., Lagunitas Brewing Co. and more.
5994 14th Avenue; (916) 457-3670.
If you’ve got the time, this one is worth the road trip. Located about an hour north off of I-5 in Williams, Granzella’s is a popular stop for those in need of a hearty meal, quick sandwich or ice cream. There’s also an expansive gourmet and gift shop and an addicting olive-tasting bar. Whatever you do, however, don’t miss a stop at the large beer case that boasts more than 150 options, including brews from New Belgium Brewing Co. and Anderson Valley Brewing Co.
451 Sixth Street in Williams; (530) 473-5583; www.granzellas.com.