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December 4, 2009 9:02 PM   Subscribe

Where can I buy Scottish beer in DC or Alexandria tomorrow morning?

Tomorrow is the Scottish parade in Alexandria, VA, and I'm going to a parade-watching party. I would like to bring some appropriate but inexpensive drinks/snacks along, but as of right now I just have, um, shortbread cookies. I was hoping to snag some Scottish ale somewhere but it's more difficult to find than I expected - I had pinned my hopes on Harris Teeter (Potomac Avenue location), but it let me down. Where can I go tomorrow morning - ideally either in Alexandria proper (i.e. none of that Fairfax-County-pretending-to-be-Alexandria nonsense) or in DC (but not too far northwest, as that would be completely out of my way) - and buy some SkullSplitter or similar? Also, the shop needs to open no later than 10 (yes I am drinking beer at a party that starts at 10:30). I'm pretty there are some cute little wine/beer shops in Alexandria but I don't know what/where exactly they are or what sorts of things they stock.
posted by naoko to Food & Drink (11 answers total)
Chevy Chase Wine and Spirits has one of the best beer selections in the DC area. I have friends who would make a detour when driving on I-95 just to go here. It's a little out of the way for you, but is easily accessible by the red line.
posted by kdar at 9:08 PM on December 4, 2009

The P Street Whole Foods has a decent beer selection, that's some ways NW but from 14th and P, it's only a few blocks to U St metro which lets you take the yellow line in a straight shot to Old Town Alexandria. If you're around Capitol Hill there's Schneider's, that's right by Union Station, I'm afraid I don't know specifically what they carry but you could always call first to check, they're super nice, great customer service.
posted by citron at 9:23 PM on December 4, 2009

Ooh, I do love Schneider's and it's right near me; I just have only bought wine and liquor there but they may have beer? I'll check.
posted by naoko at 9:43 PM on December 4, 2009

Rick's Wine and Gourmet has a good beer selection and nearly always has some Scottish beer. I'm not sure if they have SkullSplitter right now, but they tend to have the Froach Heather ales from Criagmill and, more recently, BrewDog.

Rick's is located on Duke St, and opens at 10, just east of Quaker Lane. Less than a mile west of King St Metro. You can always call and ask what they have.

There's also a Whole Foods on Duke St more or less due south of King St Metro at Duke and Holland, which has a pretty solid beer selection.

Finally, there's a Total Wine and More just west of 395 on Little River Turnpike (which is the same road as Duke St). It's in the shopping center on the north side. They have a big selection, if sometimes a bit old, although they're a bit further out.

I basically recommend Rick's, since it's a lot more the cute little shop, with a very good beer selection (although it's becoming more well known).
posted by skynxnex at 9:50 PM on December 4, 2009

Give Total Wine a call. They have a pretty good computer system and can generally tell you on the phone if something is in stock or not. Phone is (703) 941-1133.

It's easy to get to, basically just a few hundred feet past 395 on Duke Street. If you enter from Beauregard St you avoid a lot of stupidity in the parking lot, just FYI.
posted by Kadin2048 at 10:47 PM on December 4, 2009

Scottish Beer? I'm Scottish and all the kinds of things you see marketed as "Scottish Beer" are just gimmicky trash we sell to tourists and people who themselves are so blinded by the romantic image of our past that they buy into it as well. If you want a genuinely Scottish beer that reflects what Scots are actually drinking, in Scotland, then go for Tennents.
posted by Biru at 4:17 AM on December 5, 2009

Tennents is the only Scottish beer I know of that's widely available. There are some excellent small breweries (Black Isle comes to mind) but these are hard to find in Scotland, and I'd be really suprised to see any in the US.
posted by Magnakai at 5:37 AM on December 5, 2009

Brickskellar carries over 1,000 brands. On 22nd St NW, near the corner of P St W.
posted by elle.jeezy at 6:58 AM on December 5, 2009

I recently stumbled upon a good Scottish beer called Innis and Gunn while traveling in Canada, but sadly is only available in the States in the New York area, at least according to their website. More research may turn up other sources.
posted by kuppajava at 10:18 AM on December 5, 2009

On Chevy Chase Wine & Spirits - if you can't find what you're looking for, Magruder's is just up the block and has a selection just as wide; between the two of them you have a heck of a selection. But, then, they are about as far north and west as you can go and stay in the city.
posted by The Bridge on the River Kai Ryssdal at 12:12 PM on December 5, 2009

Thanks, all. Lots of great answers but Rick's was closest to my driving route from home to the parade. Good selection and friendly, helpful staff - I would go to Alexandria just to stop by there again.
posted by naoko at 11:16 PM on December 5, 2009

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