There's Passion Brewing in Athens

There's Passion Brewing in Athens
Words by Lucy Graves

Creature Comforts, originally started in Athens, Georgia, is a passionate and community-driven brewery honing in on delicious, juicy beers that transcend the industry standard. 

Adam Beauchamp, COO of Creature Comforts, originally started his own home brews back in 2006 while working for brewery giant, Sweetwater. “There was an extreme beer movement—and so, it was a little bit of an arms race to see who could make the strongest or most bitter beer,” said Beauchamp, wanting to stray away from that norm.

Beauchamp then learned a fellow UGA graduate and mutual friend, David Stein, was doing something similar. “I began to become aware that David Stein was starting his own little homebrew label called Creature Comforts—and a lot of people were kind of taking notice he branded it really well,” said Beauchamp.

He reached out to Stein, and the pair hit it off. “David went out and really, you know, hit it hard, branding his stuff, getting it in front of anybody, and eventually caught the eye of some investors who wanted to open a brewery,” said Beauchamp.

With investors on board, Creature Comforts Brewery opened in 2014. Located at an old Snow’s Tire shop in downtown Athens, the brewery still sits in the historic building, an old Michelin Tires sign still sitting on the roof. 

Both being UGA graduates, Athens was the ideal place for them both. Beauchamp describes the people of Athens as energetic, optimistic, intelligent and thoughtful. “There is a sense of, you know, city pride here, which is a cool thing to be a part of and try reinforce and to try to make better—and make people proud and happy that we are here,” said Beauchamp.

Their juicy IPA, Tropicália with Citra, Centennial, and Galaxy hops is a fan favorite. It’s tropical, fruity, and balanced with a low amount of bitterness. Beauchamp calls it their “instant classic.”

At Good Grit, we love the clean and crisp Classic City Lager. The fruited gose, Tritonia, is brewed with cucumber, lime, sea salt and coriander. 

“I hope that we're known for our variety, and that we make really, really outstanding examples of almost everything that people drink these days in the craft beer segment,” said Beauchamp.

The strong sense of intention at their brewery also shines through in their philanthropic efforts. “In our first year, we recognized that there was a huge disparity in terms of the way that people experience the city of Athens. Partly along racial lines, but economic as well—there's a tale of two cities. Here, we have the fifth highest poverty rate,” said Beauchamp. 

They soon started their initiative to support Athens called Get Curious, a 3-part plan. The first being Get Comfortable which addresses the most pressing needs. The second, Get Artistic, supports the local art scene and empowers others. The third, Brew for One is a focus project.

“Brew For One is sort of if something comes along, that really, really pulls at our heartstrings, and we want to do one thing for an individual or family, that we can get some resources and make a difference in an individual's life,” said Beauchamp.

The projects Get Curious aims to focus on are all determined by a 6-person board, and everything is carefully chosen to reflect the needs of others. Many businesses contribute to this fund, and they disperse the funds once a year. “It went to quarterly during COVID because we found some really urgent needs,” said Beauchamp.

With passion projects that mirror the intention behind their beer, Creature Comforts shines through as a complex, and connected brewery. They have recently expanded distribution into Nashville partnering with the Lipman Brothers, the first distributor of wine and spirits in Tennessee. Four beers from their core lineup will join the Music City market, including Tropicália, Automatic, Athena, and BIBO.

“We want to be in places that that get us excited, we feel like you know, puts flavor to our brand,” said Beauchamp.

Craft-beer lovers in California can also look forward to Creature Comforts as they are currently building another brewery and second taproom location in LA. “We believe that being a growing company can fuel the greatness of a company,” said Beauchamp.

Creature Comforts isn’t slowing down, and we can all look forward to seeing these flavorful beers in our local supermarkets, from the City of Angels to the Birthplace of Country Music.