If there needs to be a villain in this scenario, one that two potential rivals could bond together to fight against, it'd be Georgia law. Particularly a law that restricts craft and microbreweries from selling their own beers -- and other ways they might promote themselves.
“Unfortunately, we are limited greatly by Georgia’s antiquated laws and we are not able to serve our communities in the way they desire,” says Nick Purdy, cofounder of Paste magazine and founding partner of Avondale Estates-based Wild Heaven Craft Beers, one of Atlanta’s recent brewing success stories. “Voter desires are being ignored by politicians, but we do the best we can to create spaces where our friends and neighbors can come together to share a beer. Regionally, craft beer is growing very fast, in part to catch up with the rest of the country. The South has been behind, but a lot of good stuff is happening. From new breweries, to better laws in most states, and an understanding that our businesses are the best kind. We create manufacturing jobs. [We] pay excise taxes and generate tourism.”