Statesboro’s homegrown brewery, appropriately dubbed Eagle Creek Brewing Company, is scheduled to open its doors to the public on Sept. 1, just in time for football season. The brewery is in the midst of a regional beer tour that will allow beer enthusiasts to try one of their flagship brews at a variety of bars and restaurants in the Statesboro, Savannah and St. Simons areas. In Statesboro alone, 20 bars and restaurants are carrying Eagle Creek’s Low Country Pale Ale, a beer that was brewed in response to the numerous “wimpy pale ales” in the market. Boasting three varieties of American hops and a citrus aroma, this pale ale sets itself apart from others. Despite its mild bitterness and hoppy flavor, it finishes clean with no unpleasant aftertaste.
Co-owners Franklin Dismuke and Daniel Long have two main aspirations for the Statesboro-born brewery. The first is simply exposing, educating and encouraging residents of the surrounding community to try craft beer.
“A lot of people are afraid of craft beer,” Long said. “We offer a wide range of brews that will appeal to everyone. We want to reach the pallet of the masses.”
Additionally, the brewery strives to serve as a catalyst for economic development in downtown Statesboro.
“We’re going to offer a two-hour tour, which will most likely take place during happy hour,” said Dismuke. “Our goal is to have people come to the brewery and sample our beers, then proceed to downtown to have dinner.”
Eagle Creek also has enlisted the help of a Statesboro event company to assist in planning and hosting outdoor events that will be located in the parking lot of the brewery.
“We hope to have some outdoor events where there will be music, beer tastings for the adults and bouncy houses and other entertainment for children,” Dismuke said.
So, how did the concept for a brewery come about?
“Franklin and I went to California, and every brewpub (there) serves very hoppy beer,” explained Long. “When we came back, those types of beers were not commercially available here. We couldn’t find anything that was comparable to West Coast beer.”
After that fateful trip, the planning to open Statesboro’s first brewery began. The next step was to find an individual to fill the position of head brewer. Long is a member of the Georgia Southern Brew Club, where he received multiple recommendations for Georgia Southern communications student Cole Brown. In order to earn the position as Eagle Creek brew master, Brown had to “audition,” providing both Dismuke and Long a sample of one of his own home brews. As they say, the rest is history.
Eagle Creek will boast five flagship beers; however, their availability will vary. Currently, the only beer available under the Eagle Creek brand is the Low Country Pale Ale. The next beer set for release is their blonde brew, the Heritage Belgian Wit.
For more information on Eagle Creek Brewing Company, visit their website at www.eaglecreekbrewingco.com. You also can find them on Facebook.