Wild Heaven: Georgia’s Newest Craft Brewery

Dozens of beer enthusiasts packed into the upstairs bar at the Brick Store Pub in Decatur Tuesday night for the first taste of Georgia’s newest brewery: Wild Heaven Craft Beers.

The Decatur-based brewery was created by Nick Purdy, founding publisher of Paste magazine, and brewmaster Eric Johnson of Athens’ Trappeze Pub.  The two lifelong Georgians wanted to make world-class beers in the tradition of European brewing but with a uniquely American flair.

On tap at the launch party were Wild Heaven’s first two ales: Invocation and Ode to Mercy.

Invocation is a Belgian-style golden ale.  It’s cloudy golden yellow in color, with spicy flavors of dried and tropical fruits and a slightly bitter finish.  Nick and Eric recommend pairing Invocation with roasted chicken, grilled pork chops, salmon, portobello mushrooms, Gouda or Gruyere cheese.  The ale is 8.5% alcohol by volume.

Ode to Mercy is an Imperial brown ale.  My favorite of the two, it’s bold and balanced with rich flavors of coffee and oak and a hint of citrus from the hops.  The finish is smooth and creamy.  Suggested food pairings include barbecued chicken, kielbasa, prime rib, paté, English cheddar cheese and muenster cheese.  Ode to Mercy is 8.2% alcohol by volume.

Both beers are now available at pubs and restaurants in Atlanta, and will be on tap elsewhere in Georgia and Alabama later this month.

With the popularity of the local food movement, it’s nice to know you can enjoy a delicious local beer as well.  Wild Heaven is Georgia’s fourth brewery, joining Sweetwater and Red Brick Brewing Company in Atlanta and Terrapin in Athens.

Wild Heaven plans to open a brewery in the Decatur area by 2013.

For more information visit wildheavencraftbeers.com.

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Want to try a glass tonight?  Here’s where you can find the ales on tap:

Decatur: Brick Store Pub, The Corner Pub, Leon’s Full Service, The Marlay House, Thinking Man Tavern, Twain’s Billiards
Midtown: Cypress Street Pint & Plate
Virginia Highlands: Diesel Filling Station
Westside: Octane, Ormsby’s
Little Five Points: The Porter Beer Bar
Grant Park: Young Augustine’s
Sandy Springs: The Fred
East Atlanta: Midway Pub
Smyrna: Muss & Turner’s
Oakhurst: Steinbeck’s
Dunwoody: Taco Mac – Perimeter Place
Athens: Trappeze Pub