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Old 09-07-2007, 10:31 PM   #1
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Default My LHBS rocks!

Ok, I figured that since a dozen threads went around for people who hate their local shop, I wanted to bring the exact opposite experience to light.

My LHBS is small. Very small. In fact, it's 90% wine if you don't count the big bags of grain in the back room.

Prices are ok, maybe a little more than I could find online, but for the convenience of having it right there...worth the little extra he charges.

He was out of UK pale malt, but gave me MO for the same price.
He often sells me the whole grain bill at base malt price, because figuring out 1-1.5 pounds of 7 different malts is a pain in his ass.

He tastes my crappy beer, and makes recommendations. He tastes my good beer and compliments it.

He says: "Hey Alan, how's it going?" as I walk through the door. Aside from bringing my account up on his computer, and me telling him my name that first time we started buying there, I never really told him my name. He just remembers it from all the times I come in and punches my name up on the computer without me having to say a word.

He invites me to a big brew out with his local club, knowing I'm not a member and don't much care to be in a club, he invites me just to come drink and learn.

He shares his personal recipes for a kick ass kolsch. Another local HBS packages their recipes with bags labeled '60 minute hops,' but don't tell you what they are. They don't tell you what grains are in it, they just have a big bag of pre-crushed AG grains for the kit. If you purchase grains in bulk, you can't have the recipe to try and duplicate it again, you must buy the kit.

So, I just wanted to say happy thoughts about my local homebrew store because the owner and (almost) sole employee is an all around great guy who's happy to have me in his store and always makes time to chat while we're putting together a grain bill.

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Old 09-07-2007, 10:42 PM   #2
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Congrats! I'm very happy for you. It's great to have a LHBS with helpful people. I'm extremely fortunate to live in Austin, home of AHS. The guys there are always helpful and all their recipes list out ingredients to the ounce. No secrets, just beer.

Great customer service is hard to come by. You are fortunate you found one. Enjoy!

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Old 09-07-2007, 11:51 PM   #3
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So, after all that great PR, are you going to tell us who it is? (or did I miss something?)

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Old 09-08-2007, 12:10 AM   #4
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Oak Barrel in Berkeley rocks as well. that is all.

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Old 09-08-2007, 02:05 AM   #5
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It's "Thirsty Brewer" in Baldwin (about 10 miles north of Baltimore), MD.

I wasn't meaning to come in and advertise for him, more just to make sure people realize that there ARE good small LHBS stores out there after all the recent horror stories.

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Old 09-08-2007, 02:20 AM   #6
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Sounds like my LHBS, jezter6. I've been looking for a source of bulk 2 row and grinder, but the guy really needs people to buy his grain or he'll let it go. Loves to talk and calls me by name. I think I'll just pay the extra for the convenience and the personal touch. By the way, the name of his shop is the 'Grape and Grain' in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Scott's a hell of a guy.

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Old 09-08-2007, 02:20 PM   #7
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Good to see LHBS that treat their customers right.

My LHBS is the same way. Always got time to chat, taste and comment.
If they don't carry it they will order if they can.
He even went so far as to let me order a sack of grain he couldn't get
( for reasons I won't explain here) and put it on a pallet order he had comming from the same location. No charge to me.
They are here http://www.brewerylane.com/beer.html

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Old 09-10-2007, 09:31 PM   #8
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I think we get lucky in Maryland. I love my LHBS as well, Flying Barrel here in Frederick.

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Old 09-10-2007, 09:53 PM   #9
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I've gone to Maryland Homebrew a few times and Columbia and have had great service. I just wish there was a shop a bit more local to me in Montgomery county.

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Old 09-11-2007, 02:51 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adx
I just wish there was a shop a bit more local to me in Montgomery county.
Try shooting a bit north next time. Flying Barrel is a GREAT LHBS, and if anything, it's worth the trip just to meet new brewers. Prices are competitive and you get your items the same day. It's still a little drive, but Bethesda to Frederick isn't really that bad...

(As a note: I do Frederick to Sterling to Alexandria daily... My perception of "not that bad" may be off a bit.)

to great Home Brew Suppliers!
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