New breweries planned for Georgia | 2017 Edition
A year has passed since Beer Guys Radio launched and the Georgia craft beer scene has grown quite a bit since then. We tracked the progress of new breweries in Georgia for 2016 in this post. Here’s a quick recap:
Georgia Brewery Growth in 2016
- 7 new breweries opened in Georgia
- 3 new brewpubs opened in Georgia
- Monday Night Brewing announced a second facility on Atlanta’s Beltline
- SweetWater built a new barrel-aging facility, The Woodlands, which recently opened
- Georgia breweries won back the right to sell tours and offer samples and to-go souvenirs
- Georgia brewpubs won the right to sell growlers of their beer to-go
As it goes when planning and building a brewery a few that were set to open in 2016 are still working to make that happen, but several of them are getting close to opening. Although the title just says breweries, we’ve listed meaderies and cideries as well. It looks like 2017 could shape up to be another great year for Georgia beer.
New Breweries Planned for Georgia in 2017
This list is ever-changing. Breweries will be added and moved around here as needed and we’ll update with relevant info throughout the year.
Akademia Brewing Company | Athens, GA
Formerly Big Springs Brewing and re-branded in late 2016 drawing inspiration from the history of higher education in Athens. To introduce themselves to the community they’ve hosted a few events with their Noctua Imperial Stout, brewed in conjunction with Southern Brewing Company. Once open, Akademia with be a “brewery and culinary pub concept”.
The BeesCraft Mead Company | Dawsonville, GA
The BeesCraft Mead Company in Dawsonville, GA (with hives in Elijay) is scheduled to open for distribution in June with three mead recipes that have scored 45/50 or better in BCJP sanctioned major competitions over the last few years (including last year’s Peach State Brew Off). Their tasting room is set to open later in the summer right next to the North Georgia Outlet Mall. Owner Derek Piper tells us they are, “super jazzed to begin and excited about being a part of the Georgia craft alcohol scene!”
Chattabrewchee Southern Brewhouse | West Point, GA
After traveling the world in the US Army, the Chattabrewchee owners decided they wanted to settle down somewhere with warm weather and a slower pace. Their brewhouse in West Point will offer easy-drinking and approachable beers with a Southern theme. Their main goal is to serve the local market and be a gathering place for folks to come together and relax over a pint or two. Brewing will be on a 7-barrel brewhouse as well as a 1-barrel pilot system, expect to see them on draft and in cans sometime around June.
Creature Comforts 2nd Location | Athens, GA
In the works for a while now, Creature Comforts announced mid-January that they have selected a location to build a 2nd brewery in Athens. With an $8+ Million investment they plan to convert a circa 1900 mill complex into a 36,000 square foot brewing facility that should be operational in October 2017.
Etowah Brewery | Dallas, GA
The owners of Johnnie MacCracken’s Celtic Pub in Marietta are working on opening a brewery in Dallas, GA in a unique, L-shaped building that was once the home of People’s Drug Store. They plan to open in Spring 2017.
Etowah Meadery | Dahlonega, GA
Small meadery turning honey and fruit into wine. Targeting an opening in late Spring 2017.
Firewater Brewing Company | Kennesaw, GA
Firewater is planned for Kennesaw but there’s no solid timeline yet on opening. Owner Michael Sorg said he would like to have beer out by Spring but he may need to be push that back a bit. Firewater will definitely launch with an IPA and have other TBD brews available as well.
From the Earth Brewing | Roswell, GA
Brewery founder Tim Stevens tells us they will open with 6 house brews and also feature local and regional taps as well as seasonal craft cocktails, an extensive wine list, and a seasonal chef-drive menu. The brewpub will feature a large outside beer garden with herbs and vegetables grown on site as well as games for the family to enjoy and live music and special events throughout the year. Menu items will be aggressively priced to give guests an exceptional value. From the Earth will be located in the Connexion Center at 1570 Holcomb Bridge Rd. in Roswell.
More info: Facebook
Georgia Beer Company | Valdosta, GA
Continuing for 2017, Georgia Beer Company recently signed an economic development agreement with Valdosta-Lowndes County Development Authority that will help make their brewery happen. They will be located in the old Waterworks building in downtown Valdosta. The brewery plans to open this Summer and will offer their beers on draft and in cans with occasional limited release beers in 750ml bottles.
Good Word Brewing | Duluth, GA
The team at Decatur’s Brick Store Pub is working on opening Duluth’s first brewpub. Headed by Ryan Skinner and Todd Dimatteo they will offer their brews on the Duluth square and fill in one of the gaps on Georgia’s beer map. Their goal is to offer both food and beer that makes everyone feel welcome, like they are at home. While waiting for the brewpub to open look for their beers (gypsy brewed with other local breweries) occasionally on at Brick Store Pub or special events around Atlanta.
Oconee Brewing Co. | Greensboro, GA
Located in a circa-1917 former mill, Oconee Brewing Co. hopes to open by Masters weekend or at least in early April. Their debut will include a Kölsch, a Habanero Pale Ale, an IPA, and a Dunkel. Brewmaster Taylor Lamm joined us in the studio in August 2016, you can hear that interview on Ep. 32 of Beer Guys Radio.
Locomotion Brewing | Chamblee, GA
Twain’s former Head Brewer Chase Medlin plans to open Locomotion in Chamblee. They originally had a target of March 2017 to open but that is delayed. Chase mentioned he doesn’t have any news at this time but will share an update soon.
MAZURT Brewing | Atlanta, GA
Ahhh, MAZURT. The most famous Georgia brewery that doesn’t exist. If you’ve been in the Atlanta beer scene for a while you know Dan Rosen and Hamp Covington’s beers pop up occasionally at events around the city, and down South at Hunahpu’s Day where they frequently win awards. Dan assures us (sure, sure) that they are making progress and the brewery will happen in the near future. Fans are eager to see these guys open, we’ll make sure to keep bugging them for updates.
Monday Night Brewing 2nd Location | Atlanta, GA
It’s awesome to see some of our breweries expanding with new locations and Monday Night is another one that will open a 2nd facility this year. Located on the south side of Atlanta’s Beltline, the new brewery will focus on sour and barrel-aged beers. Plans are to have the facility open late Summer to Fall of 2017.
Monkey Wrench Brewing | Atlanta OTP East, GA
Monkey Wrench has offered beers at various festivals and events for a few years via guest brewing with other breweries. Owner Wayne Baxter says that after many years of planning hes getting to the final mile of opening his own brewery. A location is pending that will offer room for a 20-barrel brewhouse and “Tasting Garage” with a very outdoor friendly space. Beers that Monkey Wrench has offered in the past include a West Coast IPA, Spiced Holiday Ale, Spiced Witbier, and a Chocolate Milk Stout.
New Realm Brewing Co. | Atlanta, GA
Probably one of the most hyped and exciting projects coming to Georgia this year is former Stone Brewmaster Mitch Steele’s brewpub. Don’t get me wrong, I’m plenty excited for Georgia’s hometown breweries but the fact that a high-profile Brewmaster coming from a much more beer friendly state chose Georgia to set up shop is a pretty big deal for us. We’ll undoubtedly get some great beer from the brewpub but this will also bring a bit more hype to Georgia beer in general. I suggested to Mitch that he throw a curve ball and not offer any IPAs at all at the brewpub, he did not like my idea. They’ll be opening on the Beltline and plan to be serving up beer by the 4th quarter of 2017.
More info: Mitch Steele and partners Bob Powers and Carey Falcone talked with us on Ep. 57 of Beer Guys Radio.
UPDATE 03/16/17: The brewpub now has a name, New Realm Brewing Co.
Oak Brewpub | Oakhurst, GA
Oak Brewpub plans to have their interior build finished in early February with the exterior not far behind that. They’re finalizing the build out on the brewery as well and hope to be brewing test batches soon. The target soft opening will be soon after that with plans to open to the public in mid-March. They will also have a large outside patio with movie screen for family friendly movies and comedies to enjoy when the weather cooperates.
Piedmont Brewery & Kitchen | Macon, GA
Partners Brian Whitley and Richie Jones plan to be brewing my late February and open their brewpub in March. They will brew on a 7-barrel brewhouse and offer 7 beers on tap with 3-4 core styles and the others rotating seasonal and limited release brews. Their building is a two-story location and will feature an arcade with pinball and other games and (if space allows) a mini indoor bocce ball court. They intend their brewpub to be very family / kid-friendly.
Pontoon Brewing | Sandy Springs, GA
Under new ownership, Pontoon Brewing is in the process of building out their brewery in Sandy Springs with plans to open this June. With a focus on “the Pontoon lifestyle” many of their offerings will be easily-approachable beers with a mix of stouts, porters, and other styles seasonally. Owner Sean Ø’Keefe tells us they’ll brew on a 10-barrel, 5-vessel brewhouse with a potential capacity of 10-12k barrels per year. Expect to see their offerings migrate from bottles to cans when the new facility is open. They’re planning a big event for their grand opening with a live otter kicking it in a kiddie pool. Now it’s a party.
Pretoria Fields Brewery | Albany, GA
Pretoria Fields Brewery broke ground in Albany last November and is the largest ever private investment in Downtown Albany. There’s no timetable yet for opening but the brewery plans to show “respect to local agriculture” and use a variety of ingredients from South Georgia. Crops have already began production on certified-organic land Pretoria Fields owns in Dougherty County.
Printer’s Ale Manufacturing | Carrollton, GA
Printer’s Ale plans to produce “year round brews, and unique/experimental one-offs and seasonals.” They’re making great progress on their build-out and have just received Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Trade Bureau (TTB) approval. With current progress they plan to open in March.
Senoia Beer Company | Senoia, GA
Founded by four homebrewing friends, Senoia’s Facebook page states they are currently in the exploratory and planning stages.
Slow Pour Brewing Company | Lawrenceville, GA
Slow Pour’s Facebook page shows things are coming together for them. As of mid-January their brew system is in place and their tasting room is under construction.
Standing Pitch Brewing Company | Atlanta, GA
We spoke with founder Tim Schiavone at the Atlanta Cask Ale Tasting and he’s very excited about the progress going on behind the scenes right now. Standing Pitch has a location picked out and they have a GoFundMe setup to help with start-up costs.
More info: Facebook
STATS Brewpub | Atlanta, GA
STATS Food + Drink in Downtown Atlanta recently announced they will convert their Coke Zero event space to an in-house brewery. A 10-barrel brewhouse will be installed and STATS will offer up to 6 house brewed beers as well as other craft beers. They plan to have their beer on tap by July 2017
Steady Hand Beer Co. | Atlanta Area
Originally planned for Roswell area the brewery owners have changed direction a bit and may open their facility in Atlanta. Currently they are contract brewing a couple of their beers and doing launch events around the Atlanta metro to introduce their beer to the market.
Terrapin ATL Brew Lab | Atlanta, GA
Braves baseball, beer, and barbecue – now that’s about as American as it gets. Terrapin’s ATL Brew Lab plans to open in April at SunTrust Park. Not only will you be able to enjoy some Terrapin beer and Fox Bros. barbecue (in the tasting room/restaurant attached to the brewery) during games but it will be open year-round and accessible outside of the stadium. Terrapin plans to start with 3-4 recipes and eventually have 8-9 beers on tap. The ATL Brew Lab will create a lot of new and different beers on site.
Variant Brewing Company | Roswell, GA
Roswell is becoming a great location for craft beer. There are two breweries open now with Variant and From the Earth coming this year, as well as a nice handful of bars and restaurants with plenty of craft beer selections. Variant is in the building process now and hopes to open their brewery on Norcross Street this Summer.
Wild Heaven Beltline Location | Atlanta, GA
With the passage of SB85 allowing direct sales at Georgia breweries Wild Heaven Beer announced they will open a second location on the Westside Trail of the Atlanta Beltline. The new brewery will be in the Lee + White development, the same development where Monday Night Brewing is building their barrel aging and sour facility. Owner Nick Purdy says the new location will be an “incredible food and beer destination.” Other neighbors will include Honeysuckle Gelato, Doux South Pickles and Southern Aged Cheese.
Wild Leap Brew Company | LaGrange, GA
Founded by friends that worked together at Red Brick, Wild Leap will be located in the Westbrook Tire building in in LaGrange. Beers could be available in LaGrange as early as February through a partnership with another local brewery and the owners hope to open this Summer.
Recently Opened Breweries
Brewhouse Music & Grill / Rome City Brewing Company | Rome, GA
Recently opened, Rome City Brewing Company is located inside Brewhouse Music & Grill. Rome’s first brewpub is a sports bar offering live music, wings, burgers, and locally brewed cold beer.
Hopstix |Chamblee, GA
A unique brewpub concept serving Asian fusion cuisine including robata grill, raw bar, and a beer bar. The bar and restaurant area of Hopstix is open now and they’ve done a few soft open events. They plan to have their beer on tap very soon. Hopstix has tapped Chris Collier as their Head Brewer.
As of late February Hopstix has been under a soft open, their official Grand Opening party is set for March 4th.
Ocmulgee Brewpub | Macon, GA
Opened in early January Ocmulgee Brewpub offers a naturally sourced menu featuring burgers, superfood salads, and hand-cut fries. A recent taplist featured American IPA, Witbier, American Amber, American Stout, Vanilla Porter, and a Winter Ale.
Savannah River Brewing Co. | Augusta, GA
Savannah River Brewing opened it’s tasting room on Saturday, February 25th. A few of the brews at launch include their Savannah River IPA, Westobou Amber Ale, Dynamite Brown Ale, No Jacket Required Pilsner. Check their website or Facebook page for info on tour times.
Brewery Closings / Cancellations / Status Unknown
Grizzly Brewing Co. | Acworth, GA
Grizzly was on last year’s list but as of this year there haven’t been any updates from them since mid-2016. We’ve reached out to them for an update but have not received a response.
Kudzu Brewing Co. | Athens, GA
Another one from 2016’s list. We’ve sent an email for an update but have not received a response. Their Facebook page shows occasional activity but no progress updates on the brewery.
Normaltown Artisanal Brewery & Cucina | Atlanta, GA
We received news in late 2016 that Normaltown’s owner had passed away. Damien Schaefer was a friend to many in the culinary and beer worlds and will definitely be missed.
Strawn Brewing Company | Fairburn, GA
Strawn closed quietly in mid-2016. The brewery has been purchased and plans to re-open in the future. We met the new owner who said he planned some “very exciting things” but was not ready to share any info publicly.
There are a handful of breweries in the early planning stages right now that may not open this year, some of them may not see the light of day at all, it happens. Here’s a look at what we may see in the coming years.
Braselton Brewing Company | Braselton, GA
In the early planning stages but targeting to open in 2018 as a brewpub.
Brown Man Brewing | Atlanta Area
Very early planning stages but targeting late 2018 to early 2019 to open.
GRITS Brewing | Atlanta, GA
GRITS Brewing hopes to open in mid 2018 with the possibility of some beers offered via contract/gypsy brewing in 2017. Their brewery will feature an event space and extensive outdoor beer garden as well as a barrel program. GRITS intends to brew American-style craft beers and make “traditionally uncreative things imaginative, starting with our bold flavors.”
Suwanee Creek Brewing / Greenway Brewing (Tentative names) | Suwanee, GA
Long-time homebrewer and engineer Scott Norwood and his wife plan to open a brewpub in the Suwanee area in the future. If they can’t find a suitable space in Suwanee they may set up shop in Buford, Johns Creek, or Duluth. Scott spent some time in the Air Force in the 1980s stationed in Germany and traveled extensively through England and Western Europe sampling their brews. His favorites include English Bitters, ESBs, Scottish Ales, IPAs, Marzens, and Pilsners. If he could set this up as his dream project he’d like to have the ability to ride his bike to work.
Tidal Soul Brewing | Saint Simons Island / Jekyll Island, GA (Tentative)
For now, Tidal Soul is a concept brewery with a loose target to open in 2018. The focus would be on “beachable beers” with a variety of lighter ales, lagers, sours, IPAs, and fruit beers with few darker beers except for the occasional barrel-aged offering. Beers would be available on draft and in cans, including crowlers to-go from the brewery. Founder Justin Crandall tells us they will offer pizza and he has perfected his pizza dough after years of working in pizza places since his teenage years.