The Beer Store opening in Nashua

It won’t matter if you don’t know a hops from a hole in the ground: Marc Foster has been tasting beer and taking notes for years, and he is ready to take his customers on a malty journey.

“I never liked bad beer,” said Foster, owner of The Beer Store, a new Nashua haunt for craft beers and gourmet snacks. “It’s kind of something you grow into. You might have a Budweiser to start with but when you figure out that it’s not that good and you finally find one you like and it just points you in a direction. And I just followed that.”

For Foster, all trails lead to his new store. The Beer Store, 433 Amherst St., is slated to carry more than 300 craft beers from all over the country, as well as imports and custom meads and ciders. The finishing touches are coming together for Foster and his wife, Melanie, and the two plan to have the store up and running by Friday .

“Grocery stores tend to handle a lot of the beers in New Hampshire,” Foster said. “What they do is they might have 10 great craft breweries represented in the store, but they’ll only have one or two of (the brewery’s) beers in the store. The brewery itself is offering five, six, seven – including seasonals – and basically they’re just not put in one place. … We’re looking to get those all on one shelf and represent the breweries the way they’d want to be.”

In fact, he said, someone in Nashua may have to travel 20 miles or more to get a decent craft beer selection.

“We had a couple options (of stores to start) but how this came about was really by identifying a need in this area,” Foster said. “Really, I travel 20 or 30 miles to go see a beer selection like we’re going to have. I think it’s simply going to fill a hole in the market.”

As a home brewer and avid watcher – and taster – of the craft brew scene across the country, Foster said he’s tried to incorporate some of the best elements of other beer stores.

One such element is allowing customers to buy single 12-ounce bottles of a beer.

This way, Melanie Foster said, someone new to craft beers can create a mix-and-match six-pack sampler to help him or herself with their beer education.

For those who want to learn a little more about beer, the Fosters will offer semi-regular beer tastings and seminars with local experts.

Visitors to the store can also get kegs of craft brews and are welcome to suggest a brew to Foster that he may not have.