Brewery Review of Torched Hop Brewing Co. in Atlanta, GA.
I made my way back to Atlanta recently for the 2nd time in 3 months, and wondered what new things I might find. It didn’t take long to learn about Torched Hop Brewing, which had literally just opened in the time between my trips. Better yet, it is near one of my favorite neighborhoods, which is the several block radius surrounding the Fox Theatre along Peachtree St. NE. I was able to walk there from my hotel, which was already tallying points in their favor.
I’ll admit I didn’t do a lot of research before coming to Torched Hop, because as soon as I heard “new brewery down the street”, I was like a dog chasing a bone. I was expecting such a new brewery to have a small tasting room and niche following at this point, but boy was I wrong. Torched Hop is huge. When you walk in you quickly realize this is a full fledged restaurant with tons of seating in a cavernous multi-room space, and even though I went at an off-peak time (early afternoon an a Saturday) it was packed. I didn’t even know they served food, and it turns out they have a full upscale gastropub menu! Also, they managed to maintain a warm, cozy feel even in such a big space due to the brick walls, dark wood accents and lighting choices. You could tell that the facility itself was well thought out.
Once I was able to get a seat at the bar, it was time to peruse the beer offerings. Torched Hop had seven of their own draughts along with beers from several other local brewers. I decide to stick with their beers (since this is a review of their brewery, after all), and got a flight. I’ll admit that no one particular beer blew me away, but they were all solid, well-crafted beers. It’s also worth pointing out that for a brewery in its infant stages, they did have a nice variety of styles (imperial amber ale, scottish ale, milk stout, Belgian tripel, etc.). Once I settled on a beer I found myself drinking the Batch One Pale Ale, which by just reading the descriptions I didn’t think would be my favorite, but that’s the best part about trying new beers, they can surprise you.
Atlanta already has a really good beer scene with breweries like Orpheus, Wild Heaven, SweetWater, Eventide, etc., and all it would take is a few more quality places to make them a great beer city. I think Torched Hop is going to be a part of that if they stay on their current trajectory. The only question I would have is, does a “torched hop” taste good? It doesn’t sound like it, but smoked malt tasted good, so who knows? I do like my marshmallows burnt and my hot dogs well-charred, so I’m open to the idea…