Last week, we went up to the Blue Ridge mountains in north Georgia with our friends. We go to the cabins regularly. Most of our time is usually spent relaxing, hot tub-ing, and drinking with our friends in the cabin. There are decent wine offerings in north Georgia, but we don’t like paying for tastings (although we’re happy to buy a bottle if they waive the tasting fee). Until recently, there were no decent beer offerings in north Georgia. Fortunately, the times have changed.
The first beer-related enterprise we became aware of was Blue Ridge Brewery. We went in relatively soon after it opened and were disappointed that it was a nice restaurant without their own beers. They intended to get a license to become a brewpub, but year after year passed with no apparent progress. Now, however, it seems like they are finally up and running. Sadly, we didn’t learn this until after the rest of our adventures. But it will now be on our short list to investigate.
Our first stop of the day was Grumpy Old Men Brewing. Their motto is great, “If we don’t like it, we don’t drink it. If we don’t drink it, we don’t sell it.” The ambiance was quite pleasant- mellow and friendly, and they had coloring books and pencils set out! Like all Georgia breweries, they had to sell us the glass and then we could have tasting gratis. With three IPAs on draft, it wasn’t exactly our favourite lineup, but they did have a nice seasonal milk stout. It was a very down-to-earth comfy place we would definitely recommend.
A short stroll across town took us to Fannin Brewing Company. The inside area was not very cozy- it seemed designed as an outdoor sitting area type tasting room. Their beer lineup, though, was amazing. Almost each beer they had on tap was excellent, and they had a couple which we could not get enough of- the Hivekicker Wheat Wine and the Chocolate Rye Porter. Sadly, we arrived late, but will definitely plan a repeat visit next time.
All in all, we are fairly impressed with the recent explosion of beer offerings in Blue Ridge. North Carolina gets all the glory these days, but if you’re around, you should check out the north Georgia mountains. It’s a great vacation spot, and now they have good beer!