On their Facebook page, Grapes & Grains proudly declare that they procured the "1st Liquor License in Barrington, RI since 1770 A.D." Owner Matthew Amaral helped make Barrington a "wet" town after his efforts to get a referendum to allow liquor sales got the "yay" vote in 2010, though G&G was the second store to open, on March 27, 2012 (Brickyard, which received the second license, opened in December). It's an elegant store, with spirits along one wall, wines in the middle, and beer filling the left wall. There are eight coolers, one with mix-a-six offerings, six with craft four- and six-packs, and one with macro fare; next to the coolers is an impressive array of bombers. They scored bottles of Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout and Dogfish Head World Wide Stout (both aged for two years; we grabbed a few of those), joining recent arrivals from Southern Tier (Oat Imperial Stout), Elemental, and Allagash. I walked in expecting "Barrington" prices, but was pleasantly surprised to find that everything in stock is competitively priced. They even have the least expensive four-packs of Founders Backwoods Bastard in the state: four-packs were $13.50, $1-$2.50 less than I saw at a half-dozen other stores in the last two weeks. It took 242 years, but Barrington has been rewarded with a first-class store.


Two brews for the Thanksgiving table: MAYFLOWER'S THANKSGIVING ALE (natch), a hearty (8% ABV) strong ale . . . and STONE'S LUCKY BASARTD (not a typo), a blend of Arrogant Bastard, Double Bastard, and Oaked Arrogant Bastard that is rich and powerful and ultra-mega-hoppy, and will make a heckuva conversation piece when you break out the bottle with the scowling-demon-guy and the spelling-challenged label.

Go to bottlescansclaphands@yahoo.com and tell us your favorite store.

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