That's how I feel after entering Columbia's The Perfect Pour last weekend. Their beer selection is fantastic, a better version of what I've enjoyed at west coast beer/liquor chain Beverages & More (BevMo) which tends to have an impressive beer collection.
TPP's entire back wall is at least eight feet high loaded with beers from literally every style imaginable. Trying to name the collection would take forever, but trust me all but the most fussy beer nuts would enjoy their selection. From the outside it doesn't look like much, as the tiny doorway wedged into its strip center hides a decent-sized interior. They also carry a modest wine selection, some liquors, and have a respectable fridge keeping various beverages cold.
The place still smells brand new, like that construction dust smell that you either love or hate. Everything is clean and orderly and I found at least one member of the staff to be quite helpful. This store is actually a second Perfect Pour, as they own another shop somewhere else in Maryland that escapes me right now.
Their website offers nothing right now, but I did sign up for their email list. They advertise various beer and wine tastings, usually on Fridays and Saturdays according to the white board near the door as I left with my clutch of beers. On the day I went, they were pouring a Victory Prima Pils and some other Victory offering I've since forgotten. I tried the Pils and found it above average, but it's not a style I enjoy much. Still, that's a nice gesture to get a taste of a good label beer without having to make a purchase and discover it's not very good.
Speaking of tasting, the best feature of The Perfect Pour and something I took advantage of is that they allow you to buy individual bottles from within their six-pack collections. I've heard of this at Trader Joe's (but not in Maryland stores per ridiculous state law --- yet another item to be addressed later), but never seen it in action. Naturally, I grabbed a generic white six-pack holder they offer customers and selected six beers to take home. Oh, and two bombers of other brews to be listed in a moment.
Again, this is a welcome (and in my mind, wise) gesture from the Perfect Pour. Most of their beer selections are available in various four and six packs on the back wall. An employee tipped me off to this individual bottle purchase option, saying it's a way to try other beers without getting stuck with an entire sick pack. Please take advantage of that policy if you find yourself at The Perfect Pour. I wish more beer/liquor stores would be so considerate.
Feel free to argue with me about this, but for now The Perfect Pour's Columbia location gets a high grade from me. They give beer fans options, decent tastings on certain days, a clean store, helpful staff, and a vast selection of good beers. It's basically all you can ask for in the states other than making a stop at those mythical bars and beer stores with selections you wouldn't think possible.
Ok, so my beer haul from that night (remember last week, "what's in your fridge?"):
12 Oz Bottles
Lancaster Hop Hop IPA (PA)
Weyerbacher Double Simcoe IPA (PA)
Urthel Hop It Blonde Ale (Belgium)
Ommegang Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend (NY)
Troegs Troegenator Doublebock (PA)
Smuttynose Robust Porter (NH)
22 Oz Bombers
Southern Tier Unearthly Imperial IPA (NY)
Avery Collaboration Not Litigation Ale (CO)
All of the following will be new tastes, outside of the Collaboration, which I've had multiple times on tap at Stone's World Bistro & Gardens in beautiful San Diego, California.
Map It (For some reason Marie Curie Dr. isn't on the various map services. It's across from the Costco/in that center if you take the 95 South and exit onto the 175 East, first right and then another right)
(Image: Clara Natoli/MorgueFile.com)
7 hours ago