March 25, 2016

ACC Won't Prosecute Creature Comforts



Photo Credit: Creature Comforts

Athens-Clarke County won’t prosecute local brewery Creature Comforts for allegedly violating the state law regulating brewery tours, the county attorney’s office announced earlier this week.

In February, an undercover officer acting on a tip and posing as a service industry employee on “industry night,” a monthly event where service industry workers receive free tours (and beers), reported that she was given free beers and never offered a tour, nor did she see a tour being conducted.

State allows breweries—in lieu of selling beer directly to the public—to give away limited quantities of beer before, during or after tours, which they can charge for or offer for free.

“The Attorney's Office conducted a thorough and independent review of the incident and applicable law and determined that, due to the current state of the law and regulation, the probability of successfully establishing a violation of Athens-County ordinances was low,” according to a statement from ACC Attorney Bill Berryman. “Based on that investigation and conclusion, the Attorney's Office has declined to go forward with an administrative hearing.”

If found guilty, Creature Comforts could have had its license suspended or revoked, though that was never a likely outcome given that it’s reserved for the most egregious violations.

In other news, on Apr. 8 the brewery will release a Baltic porter called The King’s Ransom—named for a Black Star lyric—that’s a collaboration with Brooklyn-based Other Half Brewing Co. The beer is described as smoky, silky and chocolatey porter brewed with several types of dark and roasted malts and crystal and Munich hops that’s smooth in spite of its 10.2% ABV. It will be available in 12-ounce cans.