I first reported on Jekyll Brewing, Alpharetta’s first brewery, back in February concerning their Kickstarter campaign. They reached the goal (and then some) and got to work building out and brewing beer.
Since then Jekyll’s brews have spread throughout the community and can be found in several growler stores and restaurants. The brewery has opened recently to the public for tours. I strapped on my beer bib and headed down for my first taste of Jekyll goodness.
Like many of the Atlanta brewery tours, you pay a fee ($12 in this case) and get a glass along with several tickets that can be redeemed for tastes. The type of glassware that you get will rotate.
I headed to the bar with my mason jar emblazoned with the Jekyll Brewing logo clutched in my hands. One ticket gets you a small pour of whatever you want. Two tickets gets you a large pour. I used several tickets trying small amounts of different products and reserved two tickets for the one I liked the best.
Jekyll has come out of the gate with three offerings – Hop Dang Diggity, an American IPA, Big Creek Kolsch and Cooter Brown, an American brown ale.
I’m not an IPA drinker but I found the Hop Dang Diggity very pleasant with more fruit and less bitter.
My favorite was the kolsch, named for nearby Big Creek. It was very light and refreshing, a perfect summer beer.
The Cooter Brown was my least favorite. Darker with a huge overtone of chocolate, it just didn’t sit well with me. Now, if you’re from the south and are of a certain age, the name Cooter conjures up images of the General Lee jumping police cars. But I was told that the name comes from the legend of Cooter Brown. He was a man who didn’t want to fight in the Civil War, so he stayed drunk the whole war. Not sure how many folks would get that reference.
Everyone hangs out in the front space until the tours happen. They don’t have set tour times, they just happen when there’s enough folks that want to go on one. The tours are brief as the brewery is small. Stops along the tour include the offices, the keg storage area, the empty room that will soon become a laboratory of sorts, and the brewery itself. A word of advice; do not dress warmly. It is approximately 1,293 degrees back in the brewery thanks to the giant supernova open flame used to boil the batches. It’s all very cool.
The space in the front is a little sparse at the moment, but Jekyll has plans to add sofas, video games and TV’s to go along with the free play pinball and life-size Jenga game. They want folks to come by after work or on the weekends, have a beer and hang out.
The brewery, located off Windward on Marconi Drive, is open Tuesday through Friday from 5-9 PM and Saturdays 1-9 PM. No visitors under 21 are allowed so leave the kids at home. They’re also available for corporate or group functions like Christmas parties or birthdays.
I highly recommend checking out Jekyll Brewing, taking the tour, tasting some great local beer and saying hi to owner Mike and brew master Josh. It’s really great to be able to visit and watch their dream develop right before your eyes. Maybe it’s the beer talking, but we should all take a page from their book and make our own dreams happen.