Craft beer might not be first thing you associate with Midtown’s Cash Saver, the discount grocery store known for its cheap prices.
But the former Piggly Wiggly at 1620 Madison Avenue has quietly transformed its beer aisle into a beer oasis.
Craft beer manager Taylor James, who carefully tends to his coolers and displays like a garden, now boasts of the best selection and best prices for craft beer at a retail establishment in Midtown, if not the best in the city.
“Currently, we offer 140 craft and import selections along with 60 domestic products, and that number will only increase as new beers become available on the market. We have 158 linear feet of space solely dedicated to craft and import selections,” said James, whose father owns two area Cash Saver stores, including the Madison location, and two Piggly Wiggly stores.
The selection is truly excellent. On a recent visit to the Cash Saver, there were six varieties of beer from Schlafly alone, including the Pale Ale, Dry Hopped APA, Hefeweizen, Oatmeal Stout, Coffee Stout and Kolsch, all marked at $6.78 a sixer.
Among the brands you can find at Cash Saver are Yazoo, Ghost River, Blackstone, Sierra Nevada, Abita, Southern Tier, O’Fallon, Samuel Adams, North Coast, Shiner, Bridgeport, Red Brick, Victory, Fort Collins, Rogue, Goose Island, Flying Dog, Lazy Magnolia, Anchor, Shipyard and New Belgium.
James says that if the distributors can get it, customers want it, and grocery stores can legally sell it, then he’ll carry it. Stone is among the brands that are coming soon.
Cash Saver’s beer pricing is even better than the store’s other items. Cash Saver sells its goods for cost plus 10 percent, which means low prices on everything from canned items to produce to meat. Beer is actually marked at 3 percent below cost, and then 10 percent is added at the register.
“Beer is an important category, and we want to offer it at the lowest price point possible,” said James. “The result is the guaranteed overall lowest prices in the area and you don’t need a shopper’s card or have to pay a membership fee to save.”
That means you’ll find six-packs of beer at Cash Saver for sometimes $1, $2 or $3 lower than you can find at Kroger or other stores.
So what’s next?
“We are hoping in the next month or two to have a ‘make your own six pack’ section, so customers can try different crafts and imports. As far as our long-range plans go, we are looking to renovate our Madison location and expanding our beer coolers will be part of that plan,” James said.
Check out photos below of Cash Saver’s displays and coolers. And follow Taylor James on Twitter at @taylorhjames.