Galco’s corners craft beer market. Photo by Martha Benedict
By Nicole Possert
Galco’s Soda Pop Stop has long cornered the market on being “the” place to find and buy sodas from around the world. Now, the Highland Park soda shop and market has become the place to also get the biggest selection of cold craft beer, with a recent cooler expansion that now provides 10 refrigerated cases – up from four – devoted to artisanal beer in bottles. It’s an impressive wrap-around corner and wall of cold-beer nirvana that filled with 600 types of beers. Already one of the largest and oldest beer “bottle shops*” in Los Angeles, Galco’s new cold beer section further expands the overall selection and temperature options.
This is good news for both beer aficionados as well as those who just like to explore new tastes and need a store that offers a really diverse and large selection from small and artisanal brewers.
With beers from around the world, Galco’s stocks 100 different Belgians, imports from England to Mexico in addition to an overwhelming amount of space devoted to American craft beers, including Eagle Rock Brewery, Fat Tire, Unita Lagunitas and Russian River. Newly arrived batches of holiday and seasonal ales include five Belgian-style holiday ales, England’s St. Peters Winter Ale and DogFish Head’s 75 min IPA made with maple, Petrus Winter 9, not to mention Lost Coast Brewing’s Winterbraun. Yes, all of them are either in the new beer coolers or on the shelves.
“Our customers know we have the biggest selection but wanted to have more cold beers so we’ve responded by expanding from 4 doors [cases] up to 10 doors of cold bottled beer,” said Galco’s owner John Nese.
If 10 cases of cold beer is not enough for you, Nese plans to add four more cases in the new year.
* In beer-mecca Portland, where I’m spending some time these days, people use the term “bottle shop” to refer to a store where one can browse a large selection of diverse bottled beers for purchase. It helps to easily distinguish between a brewery for on-site consumption where they may or may not have their own brand bottled vs. a lot of different brands of bottled beer.