It all started when Snellville dentist Dr. Marty Mazzawi received a vintage Coke machine as a gift from his brother-in-law, John Reynolds. Wanting to give him something equally as cool, Mazzawi bought him a craft beer kit.
A few years later the two were discussing Mazzawi’s two North Carolina coffee shops and Reynolds, after making beer for years with the craft beer kit, suggested that Mazzawi try selling his coffee to a craft beer company for a coffee stout. Being the entrepreneurs that they are, however, the discussion came to, “Let’s do it ourselves” and two years later the pair are making history as Gwinnett County’s first-ever craft brewery – Slow Pour Brewing Company.
The brewery is located in an historic 106 year-old building at 407 N. Clayton Street, which began as the Lawrenceville Trouser Company in Historic Lawrenceville. The former warehouse’s 11,000 square foot space allows plenty of room for the production, kegging and canning of the craft beers with a 10 and two 20-barrel fermenters, a 10 barrel brewing system and a wall of refrigeration space for the canned beer.
Two bars, two sitting areas, and a beer garden will offer inviting spots to sit and enjoy a beer after a tour of the facility. According to Georgia law a tour is required before a customer can make a purchase. Senate Bill 85 which also allows a customer to buy up to a case a day directly from a brewery to take home, goes into effect on September 1, the expected opening date of the brewery.
“Right now, after a tour, we can serve up to 32 ounces as a tasting,” Mazzawi explained. “After September 1, we can pour pints and sell up to a case per person, per day.”The company will start out with three beers, a blond ale which they are calling Nostalgia, an IPA called Cotillion and a third IPA currently called Tin Punch. That name, however, may change Mazzawi confirmed.
The name Slow Pour came about after two other tries for a name. “We wanted to call the brewery 1821, the year Lawrenceville was founded, but it was taken already,” Mazzawi explained. Then they went for Slow Down because as their web site (www.slowpourbrewing.com) states, “Nothing Good Happens in a Hurry.” That too was taken. Then they came up with Slow Pour which has the same “slow down and enjoy life with friends” connotation.
Still, the large numbers 1821 adorn the wall near the bar as a gentle reminder that this is all about a time when life was not on the fast track.Mazzawi has personally done the design for the building and in doing so has tried to keep its historic aspects as much as possible. He was delighted to find original brick hiding behind paneling that had been installed at some time during the historic structure’s life.
“We re-purposed and reused all the wood we could get off the building,” Mazzawi pointed out. “The pine rafters are reclaimed beams, the bars, and our offices are made from some of the wood and the floors are the original wood.”
Large, comfortable sofas that face each other in the main sitting areas seem to invite those who have completed their tour to come sit awhile. Reclaimed theater seats in a smaller area along with several other interesting items were the result of many hours of visiting antique shops. With the space it affords and the rustic look, the brewery is the perfect setting for a casual event and one of his office’s dental assistants, Caroline Nelson will have her wedding there.
“We hope Caroline’s wedding will be the first of many special events that will be held here,” Mazzawi mused. While they won’t be serving food they will invite food trucks to come on a rotating basis so folks can enjoy different fares on different days. And, going back to their original idea, they are working on a seasonal coffee stout, made from the coffee Mazzawi serves at his Appalachian Coffee Shops in Brevard and Hendersonville, NC. It will be called, of course, Appalachia.
In addition to tours and selling beer on site, the partners hope to sell their beer to some of the trendy Historic Lawrenceville restaurants that are located on and around the Lawrenceville Square.
Located only a couple of blocks from the Lawrenceville Historic Square, the establishment will benefit greatly from a sidewalk beautification planned from the Historic Square to the railroad tracks. And Slow Pour Brewing Company will be beneficiaries of the College Corridor Lawrenceville is building as part of the city’s 2030 Master Plan to strengthen the relationship between Georgia Gwinnett College and the city.
Dr. Marty Mazzawi is obviously a lover of all things historic and of significance to him, is that his new business is located across the street from the Old Lawrenceville Depot. You can see it as you sit at the bar and look out the window. “It’s the very spot where my grandmother first set foot on Georgia soil carrying my mother, Dr. Anne Cown Mazzawi,” he explained. (See Mazzawi’s Celebrate 50 Years of Dentistry in Snellville).
Slow Pour has been anticipated by beer lovers near and far for months on end but along with their partners, brewery consultant Chase Medin, facilities Manager Chick Spinks and brand developer Brian Bernard, Mazzawi and Reynolds are anxiously awaiting the first pour. So come September 1, they invite you to enjoy a simpler time by coming by to “…ease into a comfy chair, start a real conversation and enjoy a beer with us!” And be sure to check them out on Facebook!!