Owners and longtime friends Chris Doyle and Jason Santamaria say they fought to keep the brewery open for months, even reducing the number of days the taproom was open to two days a week. It wasn’t enough.
“After months of fighting and trying to make it work we are faced with the hard decision to close our doors for good,” the statement reads. “This doesn’t come easily or lightly but out of necessity.”
Despite efforts to cut operating costs, including focusing beer production on contract brewing for other breweries, Santamaria tells the Atlanta Business Chronicle that Second Self simply couldn’t rebound to its pre-pandemic revenue levels. He also points to a Georgia alcohol law that gives wholesale beer distributors franchise rights to a brewery’s products as a factor in the decision to close.
Santamaria tell the Chronicle 80 percent of the brewery’s revenue was coming from contracting out its facility for beer production. Second Self lost four of their six contract brewing customers over the last few months due to closures or shifting business to other breweries.
Then, when the distributor Second Self uses for wholesale stopped carrying its beers, Santamaria and Doyle saw no other alternative but to close. Under Georgia’s alcohol distribution laws, Second Self can’t sign with another distributor and the new financial agreement drawn up by the current distributor is out of reach for the brewery, according to reporting by the Chronicle.
Second Self Beer Co. opened in 2014 along Logan Circle, becoming the third craft brewery to open in the now burgeoning beer district around Berkeley Park, Underwood Hills, and Blandtown. It joined Red Brick Brewing Company (renamed Atlanta Brewing Company), which opened in 2007 on Defoor Hills Road, and Monday Night Brewing, which opened in 2013 on Trabert Avenue. Atlanta Brewing Company closed in 2022 ahead of a move to Underground Atlanta.
Beers at Second Self range from a Thai wheat infused with ginger and lemongrass and the hazy IPA Game Night to A.T.ale pale ale and the imperial stout El Velorio fermented with Puerto Rican chocolate and coffee.
Below is a list of final events at Second Self:
Friday, June 9, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Poppin’ bottles of Albatross and Saison Champenoise
Saturday, June 10, 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Beer for everyone
Saturday, June 17, 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Last day. Every beer must go. Expect food and live music.