By Loren Lindler
Across the state, Georgians are finding new ways to enjoy a pint. From the North Georgia mountains to the South Georgia pines, we’ve seen a number of craft breweries popping up over the last few years.Whether you’re cheering on your favorite team or hanging out with friends at home in your rural community, authentic brews are, generally, synonymous for a good time.
Did you know there are over 100 breweries and brewpubs in the state? Of those breweries and brewpubs, approximately ten are stationed in rural Georgia. Therefore, you are sure to get a one-of-a-kind experience at the rural Georgia locations.
These breweries and brewpubs provide ample opportunities for tourism and IPA experiences like no other. Though many of the state’s breweries are located in urban areas, many still find ways to support rural Georgia.
Georgia Beer Co., located in Valdosta (Lowndes County), is the southernmost brewery in the state and Valdosta’s first brewery. Though they’re not in rural Georgia, they’ve found a number of ways to incorporate Georgia grown ingredients into their hops.
They specialize in seasonal ales, stouts, and IPAs. Since opening their doors in February 2019, they’ve found ways to use as many Georgia grown products as they can get their hands on. They’ve sourced watermelons and raspberries from Mitchell County, peaches from Peach County, and satsuma juice from Clinch County.
In an effort to support their local community, they have incorporated pecans, honey, sugar cane syrup, lemongrass, and basil from Lowndes County.
As a result, they’ve created a bounty of artisanal beers to highlight Georgia.
On the other side of the state, Creature Comforts Brewing Co. in Athens also uses the same model to support rural Georgia. Pearson Farms in Peach County provides peaches for their Pearson ale and pecans for the Well, I Declare stout.
Locally sourced from DaySpring Farms in Madison County, they’ve also used wheat in a grisette named after the farm, DaySpring, as well as in Good Migrations, Get Comfortable Belgian Style IPA, Mutualism, Annica, Always a Pleasure, and more.
Though Athens is not considered rural Georgia, Creature Comforts uses ingredients from the area including tulsi, hibiscus, and lemon verbena from UGArden, a campus community gardening initiative at the University of Georgia. They have also incorporated cocoa nibs in their My Very Own Mole stout from Condor Chocolates.
You can visit Georgia Beer Co. in Valdosta and Creature Comforts Brewing Co. in Athens and experience a new and unique way to support rural Georgia. Though these breweries, along with majority of the state’s breweries, are located in urban areas, they’re finding ample opportunities to support rural Georgia.