Archives For Ashville

Asheville has been a top “beer” city for awhile now, even though it is much smaller than most well known “beer” towns and has very little national reach regarding its craft brews. The first question is how? And the follow up, for us at least, is how do we do this in Atlanta?

First off Ashville is a very locally focused town. A quote from Tim Schaller owner of Wedge Brewing Co, said this about Ashville when talking with, “The city is not only behind its small brewers, but behind local business,” wrote Papazian in his blog post about the poll.  “The BeerCity USA poll is about community pride. Not just beer…It’s about Main Street, grass roots, community support, not mainstream data and statistics.”

The next thing Asheville has is a great support structure for their beer community, but so does Atlanta.

Here is what Asheville has going for it:

  • The first Asheville Beer Masters Tournament, based on the Wyncoop Beer Drinker of the Year and Philly Beer Geek competitions, is getting ready to hold a semi-final round.
  • There are multiple beer festivals held in town, from the boutique 14-year-oldBrewgrass Festival, to the local beer-only Oktoberfest.
  • Brewpubs galore that host regular events such as cask , tap takeovers, and beer celebrity visits.

Here is what Atlanta has in those same areas:

  • Atlanta has an average of 3 beer events per month – The difference is with our size these are spread out over the city from Decatur to Dunwoody.
  • Atlanta is Weak on brewery tours due to our small number of breweries.
  • Atlanta also has Ale Yeah, Brewmasters Warehouse, and Hop City
  • Laws restrict Brew Pub establishments, however we have bars such as The Porter, and BSP which is the best beer Joint in the US. We also have a good many brew pubs which you can find on our map.

Atlanta has many of the same things going for it that Asheville does, and has a much larger and diverse population, but has many fewer breweries and has not embraced the local pride that is prevalent in Asheville. Also, the local and state laws are much less brewer friendly in Atlanta. Self distribution of alcohol is not allowed here whereas in Asheville it is, and this gives them a major advantage.

So, in short, we are progressing along the same lines as a great many “beer” cities but have a ways to go toward improving our number of breweries, and taking a look at brewing and the culture which surrounds it as a driver for tourism and a great stimulant for the local and state economy. Maybe Atlanta should look at creating something like a brewers row, or working on laws to increase our Craft Tourism. However you look at it, Atlanta is establishing itself as a people driven city which is slowly embracing the Craft Culture and the great things inherent to it.