In recent years, many of us on the craft beer hunt have come to realize that grocery stores can be our best friend. The prices are usually good and they can have a pretty good selection of bottles. So where does Standard Market fit into all of this? Not only are they a grocery store, but they are part of of the food movement. They make food interesting and tempt you at every turn. As you enter into the store, you know you are someplace special. The food is so special that if makes me forget the main reason I love this place…the beer. Once in the store, you head back to the liquor department and to your delight you see a large selection of craft beer and wine.
This alone is enough to satisfy the needs of most craft beer fans, but there is more. They actually have about a dozen beers on tap at any given time. There is a little bar area to sit at that is very popular. It is so popular that they are currently expanding the seating area. Eric Kobus, their beer manager, does a great job organizing events and educating his staff on the current craft beer market. I always like to test people when I go into a place by asking questions. You would be surprised how many top tier craft beer bars have servers that are not up to quality. However, on every occasion, the Standard Market staff passed the test. They also provide weekly events and classes to beer enthusiasts. Their “Beer 101” course is quite popular and really does a good job of examining different beer styles.
Recently, we had the release of our Nelson Smokes Ginger collaboration cask beer with Urban Legend Brewing at Standard Market. One of the best things about beer blogging is having the ability to work with the brewers close up. We have been brewing for many years and were excited to do our first collaboration. We thought long and hard about where to have this release and Standard Market was at the top of our list. They did a great job hosting the event and created a great atmosphere for our followers. The Standard Market employees really took an interest and wanted to learn about the collaboration.
The environment for tasting is really relaxed. It’s much different than being at a bar. It is very social and also educational. Every time I sit down for a beer I meet someone new. Another perk is that you can select any bomber of beer in the store and have it opened for you right there to drink. Many of these beers would cost twice as much at a bar. It’s a deal you just can’t beat.
Yesterday we had our Suburban Brewing Trolley tour that started at Standard Market’s Drink Local Chicago Event. The event featured beers from Pipeworks Brewing Company, 5 Rabbit Cerveceria, Flesk Brewing Company, Church Street Brewing Company, Lake Effect Brewing Company, One Trick Pony Brewery, Two Brothers Brewing, Urban Legend Brewing, and Spiteful Brewing.
The event was held outside in front and the weather was beautiful. You couldn’t ask for a better day. The turn out was good and there were many great beers on hand. There was also quite a bit of teaching and discussions from the breweries that attended. I overheard discussions on lagering, secondary fermentation, and even bottle art. An amazing day in beer. Why would expect anything less when I go to Standard Market. We try to get there once a week so make sure to stop by and say hello.
Open Daily: Coffee 7am–5pm