For Local Cellar, beer fans can nab Almanac Beer and other local craft bottles from Rubicon Monkey Knife Fight to 101 North Heroine IPA, Eel River Blonde, and others. There was a bowl of hops on the counter to touch and smell, adding to the sudsy fun. For wines, expect California local bottles along the lines of Donkey & Goat, Broc Cellars, Matthiasson, Giornata, Farmers Jane, and Calder (the Charbono wine yields bright fruit and is part of the Slow Food Ark of Taste).
It's nice to see that many of the bottles are interesting but priced at $10.99 to $27.99 and without a giant markup. To combat our long bouts of warmer weather, a bottle of the fresh fruit infusions from Verbena is a nice sipping option — we went for the cherry flavor. Local Cellar's David Dranitzke told us that much of the produce used by Verbena is the same used by Local Mission Market, and he loves the Verbena story and product — the batches are small and steeped into premium grape brandy to extract outstanding sugars and only fresh fruit and juice are used.
Accessing this sort of local knowledge is why the compact space at Local Cellars should be on our radar: Find something new and exciting to try and ask away any questions before purchasing. Also many of the winemakers are friends and known to the Local Cellar family. When asked about how the neighborhood had reacted to the new shop, Dranitzke confirmed that folks had stopped in to say how excited they are to see Local Cellars open.
Purchases can be made online for pickup at the shop or over at Local Mission Market. Having an online presence is another way that this shop is a different shopping experience from the traditional Mission corner booze hub. Spend more than $99 for free delivery in the U.S. and bargain hunters can jump into the "no corkage" offer through April 2014 for any wines purchased at Local Cellar and consumed at Local Mission Eatery or Local's Corner.
Local Cellar seems to follow the same local and seasonal approach with less on-hand bottle inventory than Bi-Rite or even the 26th and Guerrero Market. There's just booze to order here, and it is recommended that hungry folks seeking a full meal or produce/charcuterie, cheese, and prepared foods journey to the nearby Local Mission Market to stock up. Hours are flexible, generally from noon to 8 p.m., but on Mondays the shop sometimes closes early.