Five men from different backgrounds have joined together for a common purpose: to make beer. Jamey Adams, brew master and biochemist, has been brewing beer for over a decade. A couple of years ago, Jamey and Ryan Fogelgren met and began mulling over the idea of going into the beer business. Starting with the Jamey’s brewing experience and Ryan’s business acumen, they joined forces with fellow beer enthusiasts Greg, Jeff, and Daniel. Combining their talents of brewing, business, law and chemistry expertise together, they formed Arches Brewing. Each of the co-founders is represented by a pillar in their logo.
The five co-founders came up with a business plan, scouted locations in and around the city of Atlanta, and decided to set up shop in Hapeville. Why Hapeville? They loved the burgeoning arts scene and the promotion of small businesses in the city. After meeting with other business owner and city officials they realized that it was a good fit. Proximity to the brew master’s home in East Point, to the corporate headquarters of Delta Airlines and Porsche Automotive, and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport also helped in their decision making process. The owners transformed an old building in downtown Hapeville by using their own funds with help from friends, relatives and a huge amount of their own sweat equity to create the facility.
Arches Brewing is setting itself apart from the other breweries popping up around town by focusing on lagers instead of ales. Talking with Ryan is truly an educational experience. He passionately explained the differences in beers such as lagers and ales. He also explained the science behind Arches Brewing creation of their regional brews. Their secret is the water. Their beers are not brewed with Atlanta water. “We alter all of our water. We duplicate the water from the country of origin [depending on] the style.” Having a couple of chemists on staff comes in handy when they are creating water with the same chemical profile of Germany or Belguim. Water is the foundation for their beers but from there they use old world processes in order to create an authentic taste that even their European customer’s praise.
They have seven to nine different styles of beers on tap at any given time. However, because they change most of their beers seasonally, they can brew over 30 styles of beers. “We follow the European brewing calendar, so every quarter we release a new lager. We like to introduce people to styles that they haven’t experienced before.” According to Ryan, even beer newbies can find something to like at Arches. “We have had several people come in that aren’t beer drinkers.” He went on to describe their gateway beers such as their Unseasonal Lager. “It’s an easy to drink beer. The lager styles [we brew] people enjoy, because they are very crisp and easy to drink. We also have Equilibrium,” which happens to be a pale ale. “It’s based on the concept of balance and is very drinkable.” No matter the preference, Ryan assured, “We’ve got a style for you.”
Arches Brewing just opened their doors in April, but they already have a relationships with businesses in the area that are allowing them to thrive. They work with the local print shop and partner with other businesses in the area to continue to encourage the sense of community that they love about Hapeville. “The craft brewing business in general is collaborative.”
E. B. Drake is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. She is a devoted wife, a mom to three energetic boys and an educator. E. B. blogs activities for kids in the Southwest Atlanta area at Swatzmom.wordpress.com.