On an average weeknight, when we’re stopping to pick up a bottle on the way home, these are the stores we look to. For many of us, they’re where we first ignited a passion for wine. They’re big shops that have plenty of affordable bottles, as well as splurge options, in a range of styles from around the world, with sales staff who are happy to help regardless of what you’re after.
At its 166 locations in California, Arizona and Washington, BevMo has bottles ranging from $6 to over $600, in addition to a selection that includes both rare and house-label wines. Spirits show similar range, with nonalcoholic offerings in the mix.
Binny’s Beverage Depot
This independent, family-owned chain still operates like a small business, prioritizing customer service and experience. A wine hotline and podcast help shoppers feel confident purchasing, and a healthy sale selection and house label offer affordable options. Those are balanced out by $10,000 Champagnes and tons of other mid- to high-ticket options in between.
There are an estimated 194,000 wine shops in the U.S.
Chambers Street Wines
New York City
This shop could have fallen into the Best Rare Wine Retailers category or, with its Slow Food connections, Best Natural Wine Retailers—but neither of those categories tells the full story. Whether you’re looking for Macedonian Limnio or Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, this shop has you covered at a range of prices.
K&L Wine Merchants
Library selections and bottles from emerging local producers set this California chain apart from other big-box retailers. But don’t worry, you’ll still find plenty of affordable bottles—possibly better priced than they are at other shops, thanks to buyers’ relationships with producers—and knowledgeable staff to connect you to the right wine.
Total Wine & More
This big-box store with a huge selection is in 24 states and growing. With knowledgeable staff, huge selection at a range of prices, and wedding-planning and corporate services, it’s not hard to see why. Its free tastings and educational events, though, are what turn casual shoppers into lifelong wine lovers.