About Time: Belmont’s Craft Beer Cellar Named ‘Best of Boston’

Each August, Boston magazine publishes its annual list of what’s “best” around Boston; the “best” new restaurant, sticky bun, bikini wax (?!) and what not.

There is a lot to quibble about the concept and how and who the magazine selects as the “best” – the magazine’s universe appears to be limited to a few miles emanating from its “axis mundi” at the border of Boston’s South End and Back Bay neighborhoods – the 2014 edition will be known for one selection Belmont residents have known since 2011: the Craft Beer Cellar is the “best” beer store in Boston.

“Much to the delight of local hopheads, this shop – opened in Belmont four years ago by Cambridge Common alums Suzanne Schalow and Kate Baker – is now spreading its sudsy gospel to new locations in Newton, Winchester, Braintree(,) and Westford,” says the magazine of the business that opened its doors on a cool November day at 51 Leonard St.

“In addition to offering tastings and classes, staffers take their inventory of ales and lagers quite seriously, regularly updating the varieties available at each store online (the newly open Newton Centre outpost alone carries more than 1,000 beers) and cataloging them by brewery, provenance(,) and style.”

And what Boston magazine acknowledges for eastern Massachusetts will soon be known around the US: the Cellar is opening stores in two new states – Maine (Portland) and New York (Warwick in Westchester county) – and is looking to Long Island and Los Angeles for possible locations.

Maybe we will see this headline in a few years: Best Beer Store in the US.

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