In the Deep South, we know that football or not, fall doesn’t really kick off until early October. With what ought to be called “extended summer” rampant for the next several weeks, you might as well keep partaking in the age-old, surefire tradition of beating the heat: ice-cold beer. And not just any beer—treat yourself to the good stuff: craft, draught beer and expertly-made microbrews. Here are four Georgia-made, must-try beers (and where you’ll find them!) in Awesome Alpharetta:
Available at Hop Alley Brew Pub, 25 South Main St.
The J-Bird Wheat comes courtesy of the brewmasters working their magic at Hop Alley Brew Pub. Brewed in-house, the J-Bird is a non-traditional Hefeweizen with a fascinating backstory: According to Hop Alley lore, the J-Bird Wheat was originally going to be a traditional Bavarian Hefe, but a shipping error forced the brew crew to get ultra crafty to the benefit of beer drinkers everywhere. The result of using the different yeast created an incredibly clean, smooth finish and a special hint of spice. It certainly pays to be resourceful, because this Hefe is a serious hit. Other micorbrews on deck you should put on your roster are the Triple P.D. (a plum sour with just the right amount of mouth-puckering tart) and the Deacon Dubbel (a Belgian Dubbel with a touch of ripe fruit from the addition of a sweet candi syrup).
Jekyll Brewing’s Big Creek Kolsch
Available at Jekyll Island Brewing, 2855 Marconi Drive, Ste. 350
Jekyll Brewing is the only true brewery in Alpharetta, and it delivers tons of town pride alongside delicious thirst-quenchers named for Georgia’s landmarks and deeply Southern colloquialisms. Jekyll’s Big Creek Kolsch is an easy sipper perfect for those who aren’t out to wreck their palate and tend to gravitate toward lighter beers. As a hybrid of the traditional lager and ale varieties, Big Creek is able to provide a nearly effervescent quality full of bready notes and even a slight hint of juicy pear. While you’re at Jekyll, be sure to sign up for a tour of the brewery. You’ll see how their all-star lineup is made, be able to sample seasonal and year-round selections, and even walk away with a Mason jar-style branded glass to remind you to schedule a repeat visit soon.
SweetWater Brewing Company’s TripleTail
Available at Butcher & Brew, 3 South Main Street
Butcher & Brew is a Craft American Shop, located in the heart of Downtown Alpharetta. Visitors will enjoy a variety of eclectic craft beers sourced from breweries all over the U.S., so it goes without saying their menu includes several local Georgia brew’s including SweetWater’s Triple Tail. Just down the road in Atlanta, SweetWater Brewing Company creates all kinds of brews with fascinating notes of whatever happens to be in season. Naturally, since Southern summers are elongated, all things “tropical” are very much en vogue when it comes to the sippable stuff. SweetWater’s TripleTail takes a hop-forward IPA and puts it in full vacation mode by adding island flavors like papaya, pineapple, and passion fruit. The result is a lush sipper that transports you to a beach without ever having to battle that gnarly traffic.
Scofflaw Brewing’s Hooligan IPA
Available at Barleygarden Kitchen & Craft Bar, 900 1st Street
Barleygarden is more than just a beer bar…it’s all about finding your next sudsy favorite while eating delicious, hand-held foods and salads. Barleygarden’s full line up of brews include Scofflaw’s Hooigan IPA. Scofflaw, one of Atlanta’s newest breweries, has come on the brew scene in the most raucous of ways with its Hooligan IPA. Just as the name implies, this beer gets rowdy with bold hints of citrus and a full-bodied, “hey-look-at-me” presence. The Hooligan IPA’s golden hazy hue is reminiscent of all the best summers of your life. Sip away, but do try to restrain yourself from getting unruly in the process.