A few weeks ago Walgreens opened at 27,350 SF flagship store at the corner of State and Randolph in the Chicago Loop.  The two-story store is well designed, modern, and the best looking Walgreens I have ever seen.  It also offers freshly prepared sushi, manicures, cigars from a humidor, a 700-bottle wine selection at price points up to $500, and a $2,000 bottle of cognac.

And the beer selection? It wasn’t bad, but simply put, it did not measure up to wine selection or even the rest of the store.  The craft beer selection included about 50 brews sold in 4, 6 or 12-packs at room temperature or in the cooler.  Larger 22-oz bomber bottles were also available.  The selection included many local brands including Half Acre, Metropolitan, 5 Rabbits, and Two Brothers.  Other brews including of Goose Island (which I no longer consider local), Great Lakes, Sierra Nevada, Bells, and New Belgium are also available.

I applaud Walgreens efforts to include a decent selection of local craft beer in their new flagship store. If I was in downtown Chicago and needed to pick up a six-pack, I defiantly would stop by especially considering the large amount of beer in the cooler.  My issue is the beer selection available in comparison to the wine and other liquor selection.  A 700-bottle wine selection and the availability to purchase a $2,000 bottle of cognac makes the beer selection look, well sad.  The craft beer scene is growing rapidly in Chicago.  Walgreens is looking to reshape their look and capture additional market share with their new products.  It would have been nicer to see a beer selection able to compete with the local chain liquor stores. However, even with their current selection having a drugstore carry craft beer shows how far the craft beer movement has come.


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,


No comments

Be the first one to leave a comment.

Post a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.