SweetWater Brewery is a small microbrewery in Atlanta that knows how to have fun. Their beers are unique and with names like Goin’ Coastal and Squeeze Box you know you are in for a treat.
About SweetWater Brewery
The company was founded in 1997. The owners came to Atlanta because of the Olympics and decided to stay and create a West Coast style brewery in the South. They grew slowly and in 2004 had enough money to buy a 25,000 square foot facility that has the capacity to produce 400,000 barrels of beer a year.
SweetWater is known for its unique flavors like 420 pale ale, Blue (blueberry), IPA, Georgia Brown, Hash and Goin’ Coastal. They also have limited release brews like Dank Tank and Cork n Cage.
I got the opportunity to take a tour of SweetWater and see just how they make their unique brews. The building is not very large and there were lots of people so it was very festive. We walked up to the line and were greeted by a man playing the bagpipes. That was a fun bit of entertainment. As you go inside you can see the brewery equipment through big glass walls. You can go to various rooms and sample beer, eat and they also have a shop.
The tour takes you through their brewing process. I really enjoyed learning about the beer and was happy to learn that SweetWater is a company that takes being green seriously. They make sure their trucks are efficient and have clean exhaust.
During their brewing process, they have leftover spent grain. They ship this product out to farmers to use as feed for their animals rather than put it in a landfill. The animals love the taste as you can imagine. They also focus on conserving water during production. I really love to hear about companies that are trying to make a difference and help the Earth.
We had a lot of fun on our tour at SweetWater Brewery. It is an upbeat environment where the employees are encouraged to come up with new tasty beers. Being a small brewery allows them the opportunity to get involved in the community and help out. We really enjoyed learning how beer is made and trying Goin’ Coastal which is their pineapple IPA that is very popular.
Don’t Float the Mainstream
Rating (4 stars):
Pros: Unique flavors, fun environment, learn about brewing
Cons: Large crowd, small building, disorganized
Priority: Medium – fun place to learn about beer and try unique flavors
Savvy Tip: If you have a lot of guests they have a VIP tour which includes food
Cost: $8 taproom tour