NoFo: Pioneering Craft "Brewstilling" in North Georgia

Crafting a Community of Adventure and Flavor

Nestled amidst the scenic landscapes of North Georgia, NoFo Brew Co stands as a testament to the power of friendship, a passion for craft beverages, and an unwavering spirit of adventure. Founded by Joe Garcia, Shannon Miles, and Bryan Miles, NoFo is more than just a brewery—it’s a symbol of connection and a celebration of the vibrant communities that call this region home.

With each passing year, NoFo’s presence expanded beyond its initial roots, spreading its wings to new locations throughout North Georgia. This growth paralleled the growing love for their exceptional craft beer and artisanal spirits, capturing the hearts of locals and visitors alike. What began as a shared vision among friends transformed into an inspiring brand that resonates deeply within the region.

NoFo’s commitment lies in curating a sophisticated and family-friendly atmosphere that centers around exceptional craft beer and spirits, meticulously hand-crafted cocktails, and a hospitality experience like no other. Their dedication to providing an elevated yet approachable setting has made NoFo a beloved gathering place for the communities they hold dear.

NoFo isn’t merely an acronym for North Forsyth anymore; it’s a representation of the values that Joe, Shannon, and Bryan hold dear. It signifies their devotion to supporting and nurturing their neighbors, creating a space where the community can thrive, and fostering a strong bond within their team.

A Journey of Growth and Community

The story of NoFo Brewing and Distilling began as a brewery in North Forsyth County. Their dedication to brewing high-quality lagers, ales, and IPAs quickly earned them the admiration of their community. With a focus on customer satisfaction and community preferences, NoFo became a staple for locals seeking exceptional craft beverages.

As the brewery gained momentum, the founding team decided to venture into the world of distillation. Embracing their passion for crafting spirits, they introduced an array of in-house products, including apple brandy, agave spirit, gin, and barrel-aged rum and other classic spirits. This bold move not only expanded their offerings but also solidified their position as an innovative and versatile player in the craft beverage industry.

Innovation and Future Prospects: Exciting New Products

The commitment to innovation drives NoFo Brewing and Distilling’s excitement for their future products. Their focus remains on developing spirits that resonate with their community. Barrel-rested gin, peach pie moonshine, and other experimental concoctions showcase their dedication to staying ahead of the curve while staying true to their roots.

Setting Goals and Achieving Aspirations

NoFo Brewing and Distilling’s production goals were set based on the capacity of their equipment and the desire for work-life balance. Their primary aspiration is to produce 1,000 barrels annually, with a keen eye on maintaining the highest quality possible. A big part of this success is due to their passionate production team including; Jonny Bradley – Director of Brewing and Distilling Operations, Hyde Buchanan – Head Distiller, and Justin Kendrick, Assistant Distiller. Their approach of focusing on customer preferences has earned them a loyal customer base, proving that quality trumps quantity. Besides recognition within the local community, Nofo has received national recognition with awards from the World Beer Cup, and the American Distilling Institutes Distilling competition.

The Power of Deutsche Equipment

To meet their goals, NoFo Brewing and Distilling turned to Deutsche Equipment for their brewing and distillation needs. Safety, engineering excellence, equipment performance, and customer support were crucial considerations when choosing their equipment provider. Deutsche’s dedication to safety, including the Buckeye system for ethanol detection, ensures a secure working environment for their team.

Nofo Brewery and Distillery started its journey with a 7 barrel Deutsche brew house, but as they grew, within 90 days they made significant upgrades to their brewing capacity, adding 15 barrel fermenters and expanding their glycol lines. They also added a 10 barrel brewhouse to their second location in Gainesville, GA. Each brewhouse now has over 1000 barrels of cellar capacity.

On the distilling side, they operate a 150 gallon pot still with dual columns, reflux, gin basket, and condenser with spirit collection vessels in their primary location in Cumming, GA. After visiting the Deutsche showroom and witnessing the quality of that still, the NoFo team decided to purchase the exact model they saw:

It's a monster 150-gallon, two-column still with the bigger condenser on it. And that thing is a workhorse, man. That puts out great liquid, fast and we’re honored to have it honestly. Even better that Deutsche had it in stock and ready when we needed it

NoFo used this still to create some award-winning spirits. Including a silver and bronze medal from the American Distilling Institutes Distilling competition for their apple Brandy and agave spirit.

Additionally, their Gainesville location boasts a substantial 300 gallon hybrid pot still with column, reflux, condenser, and spirit collection vessels. As well as open-top fermentation vessels, paired with conical mixing fermenter tanks for Jonny’s “Honeyshine”. This distillery is supported by a custom 150 gallon mashhouse. NoFo also worked with Deutsche’s sanitary process piping services for all of their locations. Jonny Bradley, Director of Brewing and Distilling Operations commented on how Deutsche’s top notch customer service, equipment quality and ability to provide custom and in-stock distilling and brewing equipment allowed for a quick and convenient startup. These equipment choices showcase NoFo’s dedication to quality and its focus on producing a diverse range of craft beers and spirits.

Moreover, Deutsche’s comprehensive services, from equipment design to installation, streamlined the process of expanding their operations. Especially their 300 gallon still and open-top fermenters which enabled them to accelerate their barrel-aging program while maintaining product consistency.

A Promising Future for NoFo Brewing and Distilling As NoFo Brewing and Distilling looks to the future, they envision becoming the premier craft brewstillery in North Georgia, while maintaining their hospitality-centric atmosphere. Their blend of a brewstillery model, featuring both brewing and distilling operations, has set a new standard in the industry. The potential for adding more locations further solidifies their influence in the craft community.

As NoFo continues to expand their line of breweries and distilleries, Deutsche will continue to provide the custom equipment solutions they need in order to meet the goals of their business. The partnership between Deutsche and NoFo has worked so well in part to their alignment of goals – customer-centric, innovative, and passion about sharing the values of the craft beverage community.

NoFo Brewing and Distilling’s story is an inspiration to both aspiring brewers and distillers. Their unwavering commitment to quality, community, and innovation has propelled them to the forefront of the craft industry. With their innovative products and customer-centric approach, NoFo Brewing and Distilling are well-positioned to shine brightly in the ever-evolving world of craft brewing and distillation. Whether you’re a craft enthusiast or a local looking for a welcoming spot to unwind, NoFo Brewing and Distilling beckons with its exceptional offerings and vibrant atmosphere.