Liquor stores across New Jersey have been benefiting from the increasing popularity of craft beers, many of which are created within the state's borders.

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The artisan brews, which are normally pricier than mainstream beer, have developed a whole new class of imbibers, and opened up the world of beer to people who hadn't been interested before.

"People are starting to appreciate the craft and the penmanship that actually goes into making (craft beer)," said Zacarias Acese-Agüero, craft beer specialist at Bootleggers Liquor Outlet in Northfield. "I think people are just bored of drinking the same thing."

Everyone's taste profile is different, Acese-Agüero said, and that's why craft brews are the answer. At Bootleggers, shoppers can choose from more than 300 craft beers when creating their own six-pack.

Acese-Agüero noted the "mix of six" process helps significantly with sales because consumers can sample up to six beers after one trip, and come back for more of the flavors they loved.

"I think people are really catching on to it," he said. "I think it's getting up there in sophistication just as much as wine."

In fact, these specialty brews are many times shelved in wine-like bottles. Prices can range from $1.50 per bottle, for a normal 12-ounce serving, to more than $30.

The rise of craft beer in New Jersey has been especially strong due to several local breweries that have been making a name for themselves, including Cape May, Flying Fish and Tuckahoe.