1. Hi-Time Wine Cellars
250 Ogle St., Costa Mesa; 800-331-3005; www.hitimewine.net
This year, Hi-Time Wine Cellars celebrates 65 years in the fine wine and spirits industry. This family-owned business was founded by Fritz Hanson and his brother-in-law Jim McVay. Since its opening in 1957, Hi-Time Wine Cellars has seen three generations of relatives as well as committed staff members working in executive and sales positions.
The 24,000-square foot facility that features a temperature-controlled underground cellar. This area stores some 10,000 different wines from various countries around the world. Hi-Time Wine Cellars also maintains an extensive selection of beers, Bourbon, Scotch, and other rare liquors you won’t find anywhere else.
“We are proud to have been to serve our customers for over half a century,” the company’s website reads. “Our goal is to provide a large selection of fine wines and rare spirits from all over the world at competitive prices without sacrificing the quality of our customer service.”
Hi-Time Wine Cellars also has an impressive collection of cigars in their very own humidor. Tobacco enthusiasts can grab their favorite bottle of whiskey and explore the store’s selection of pipes and other fine tobacco products. Treat yourself to a drink at the wine bar or sample other liquors that might spark your interest. Cap your experience off by discovering Hi-Time Wine Cellars’ gourmet foods section where you can grab some specialty chocolates and even fancy cheeses.
— Kenya Barrett
2. Total Wine & More
Multiple Locations: totalwine.com
Total Wine & More has held the title as America’s Wine Superstore since its inception in 1991. Founded by brothers David and Robert Trone, the chain went on to become the largest retailer of fines in the United States with 233 locations scattered among 27 states. Five of those are in Orange County, with stores located in Brea, Huntington Beach, Laguna Hills, Newport Beach and Tustin.
At any given time, most Total Wine locations have more than 8,000 different wines, over 3,000 microbrews and more than 3,000 spirits in stock from different countries and regions around the world.
“Whether you are new to the world of wine or a great wine enthusiast, we want all our customers to be confident and comfortable exploring our stores and selecting the wines they prefer,” says the Total Wine’s website. “That’s the Total Wine Experience.”
Multiple Locations: bevmo.com
BevMo continues to win a place in the hearts of Orange County residents as one of the top places to purchase wine or other alcoholic beverages. Similar to Total Wine & More, BevMo is one of the largest alcohol retailers in the United States with most of its locations conveniently situated on the West Coast. Of 166 stores nationwide, 11 are located right here in Orange County.
BevMo’s motto is quite simple, “shopping for beverages should be as much fun as drinking them.” The company aims to make customers’ experience exciting and easy by providing samples when browsing in-store or offering discounts while shopping online.
BevMo also provides a delivery service for those who don’t want to leave their home but desire a cozy home happy hour. For its excellence in the field, BevMo has been the recipient of numerous accolades including two American Business Awards in 2012, and the Wine Enthusiast Wine Star Award for Retailer of the Year in 2008.