The best beer places in

  Brewtopia Events LLC

Posted - August 2007

Downtown HOTLANTA offers some interesting stops for fine beer.  Grab a hotel room in downtown and head out by foot and taxi to experience the bustle and excitement of downtown and popular surrounding areas.  Give yourself one or two days to visit all the great beer locations listed below.

By Owen Ogletree
Owen always welcomes your e-mail and input.

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320 Peachtree Street
(404) 525-4400

This is a brewpub favorite located in the heart of downtown.  Max Lager's offers customers tasty food and fine house beers...
  • Max Pale - A "West Coast" style India Pale Ale brewed with generous amounts of Pacific Northwestern hops. Voted one of the Top Ten Best Beers in Atlanta by the Atlanta Journal Constitution
  • Max Gold - A Bohemian Pilsner style lager, this classic beer style has a medium body and a beautifully rich gold color. Voted one of the Top Ten Best Beers in Atlanta by the Atlanta Journal Constitution
  • Max Red  - A vibrantly red Vienna-style lager, Max Red is a mild blend of a rich toasted malt character and a subtle but spicy hop finish.
  • Max Black - Max Black's smooth rich body and complex chocolate-like malt character will change your attitude about dark beer.
  • SEASONAL BEERS - Dates and beer styles subject to change.

J.R. is head brewer at Max Lager's

30 North Avenue
(404) 347-7339

Take a taxi or MARTA rail (North Ave. stop) to The Spotted Dog pub.  This is another member of the Atlanta Derek Lawford pub chain (see Prince of Wales below).  Spotted Dog is housed in a beautiful old Atlanta fire station, and offers 3-4 nice draft beers (including a selection from Fuller's) and slightly upscale pub menu items.  The pub is about one block from Peachtree Street.

878 Peachtree Street (Midtown Atlanta)
(404) 875-1667

438 Moreland Ave. (Little Five Points)
(404) 688-1828

The Midtown location of the Vortex is just a few blocks walk north on Peachtree from Spotted Dog.  The funky Five Points location is a cab ride from downtown.  Vortex offers an impressive draft and bottled beer selection, outlandish biker-bar decor, and some of the most kick-ass burgers in town.  Check out their entertaining "bar rules" in the menu.

Vortex in Little 5 Points

848 Peachtree Street, NE
(404) 870-0805

Located near the Fox Theater in Midtown Atlanta, Gordon Biersch is part of a nationwide brewpub chain that specializes in upscale food and European-style lager beers.  Lagers are fermented for long periods at very cool temperatures and are malty, clean, crisp and satisfying.  The Gordon Biersch lineup includes favorites such as a sweet Blonde Bock, a toasty Marzen (Oktoberfest beer), a caramel-like Dunkel, a spicy Pilsner and a cloudy Hefeweizen wheat beer. The cuisine is considered by many to be some of the most luscious brewpub fare available, and although the menu shows a heavy Asian influence, the big platter of garlic fries is the best selling food item.

 1180 Peachtree St NE
(404) 347-2220

Just a few blocks from Gordon Biersch is Tap.  This new gastropub was opened in early 2007 and features a decent selection of draft and bottled craft beers from around the world.  The food is quite good as well, but things are a bit pricey here at times.  The layout of the pub is quite unique -- with keg room and restrooms located upstairs.  Be sure to ask for a non-frosted glass for your beer.

1144 Piedmont Ave NE
(404) 876-0227

Another in the Derek Lawford pub series, Prince of Wales is a 20 minute walk or five minute cab ride from Tap.  This pub is poised across the street from lovely Piedmont Park, and visitors will immediately see its resemblance to the newer Spotted Dog (see above).  There is an inviting patio out front and a fun dart area (to the back right of the bar).   Again, be sure to try the current ale selection from Fuller's Brewery in London.

Park Tavern (500 Tenth St. NE) is a trendy brewpub on the other side of Piedmont Park.  If you have plenty of time, you may want to walk to it across the park (ask anyone for directions) or take a cab.  House beers at Park Tavern are decent, but for some reason the place seems to downplay its brewery.

Rock Bottom has a location in Buckhead (3242 Peachtree Rd NW) on the way to 5 Seasons brewpub (see below).  If you've never visited a Rock Bottom before, it may be worth a stop.

5600 Roswell Rd NE # 21 (Prado Shopping Center)
(404) 255-5911

It's about a thirty minute taxi ride up Peachtree Street to this brewpub, but the trip is well worth it.  The most popular slogan of beer lovers across Atlanta seems to be, “Meet me at The 5!”  Because of its personable owners and staff, spacious main bar and dining area, gourmet menu that fuses European and Japanese foods, and outstanding hand-made selection of beers, 5 Seasons is considered by many to be Atlanta’s best brewpub.  The kitchen prides itself on its use of organic produce and fine cuts of meat.  Head brewer Glen Sprouse churns out a delightful lineup of beers that includes Seven Sisters Münchner (a slightly sweet, amber, Bavarian lager), Munich Helles (a light German-style beer that is similar to pilsner), and an ever-changing assortment of seasonal and specialty ales.  The brewpub’s annual Oktoberfest celebration, which includes unlimited German food, beer and music for one price, is a mainstay on the social calendars of Atlanta beer aficionados.  5 Seasons also has a location in Alpharetta, GA.

5 Seasons brewers and owners at their annual Oktoberfest celebration

195 Ottley Drive


Beer lovers throughout Georgia are very familiar with the flavorful and award-winning beers from Atlanta's personable Sweetwater Brewing Company.  The company's year-round lineup includes Sweetwater 420 (an English-style pale ale), Blue (a golden ale with refreshing blueberry aroma and flavor), Georgia Brown (a complex, slightly dry brown ale), Hummer (a malty, Belgian-style Witbier with a spicy coriander finish), and IPA (a flavorful pale ale loaded with citrusy hops from the Pacific Northwest).  Stop by on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday when Sweetwater opens its doors and taps to the public at 5:30 PM. The actual tours run for about 20 minutes (that gives you plenty of time to really "taste" the beers).  The brewery is a short cab ride from downtown Atlanta.

2323 Defoor Hills Rd. NW
(404) 355-5558

Atlanta Brewing Company's new facility at 2323 Defoor Hills Road is fully operational now in terms of both production and the tasting room. ABC's David Weil commented, "Tours are doing well, and people seem to have been able to find us in our new location easily enough.  We're seeing a lot of new faces from our new neighborhood too. We're having a custom 1/2 barrel system built for us that will be brewer Dave McClure's research and development test system.  Dave will be doing small batches on this system for tour-only beers and for cask-conditioning. This will give us the opportunity to experiment with some new styles and get feedback from the public.

Atlanta Brewing is a few miles from central downtown Atlanta.  They host a tour and tasting every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday from 5 PM to 7 PM. The tours feature live, local music on Wednesdays and Fridays.

© 2007 Brewtopia Events LLC
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