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Reynoldstown’s Atlanta Dairies project inks Decatur-based brewery

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“Imaginarium” concept billed as equal parts laboratory, tasting room, and brewery

A courtyard and the planned brewery beyond.
A courtyard and the planned brew-lab beyond.
Perkins+Will renderings courtesy of Paces Properties

The latest announced tenant for Reynoldstown’s forthcoming Atlanta Dairies project, an adaptive-reuse venture by the makers of Krog Street Market, sounds like a lively one.

Paces Properties on Thursday revealed that Three Taverns Brewery plans to open an offshoot of its Decatur home base in the Memorial Drive redevelopment next summer.

The fourth tenant in the Dairies’s lineup, the beer-based concept will be called Three Taverns Imaginarium, billed as “equal parts laboratory, brewery, and tasting room” and “inspired by an ancient cabinet of curiosities,” officials said.

In name and function, the concept harkens Wicked Weed’s Funkatorium in Asheville. Local architecture firm Square Feet Studio has been tapped to design the space.

Brian Purcell, Three Taverns Imaginarium owner, said Atlanta Dairies’s proximity to the Beltline’s Eastside Trail (currently being extended), its historic character and backstory, and the fact that the mixed-use hub will have one of Atlanta’s few open-container licenses were deciding factors.

“Atlanta Dairies was a lively part of Atlanta’s commercial activity for 60 years and is one of the last buildings on Memorial Drive to retain its original industrial character,” said Purcell, in a press release.

“In addition to Atlanta’s history,” he continued, “in the beginning years of the craft beer revolution in the ’70s and ’80s, when there were no equipment suppliers for the small brewer, the earliest craft pioneers were left to construct their own brewing systems from used dairy equipment, which are still in use in some breweries today.”

The Yard component, which is planned to be an acre of outdoor space for “patrons to come together, sip on drinks, and play games ultimately connecting all Atlanta Dairies elements of live, work, and play,” as developers put it.

The dairy connections don’t end there. Here’s the official concept description:

“The Imaginarium is where Three Taverns brewers will invent and concoct beers with exotic flavor profiles—while also serving up fan favorites. It plans to have four to five of its core beers on tap, followed by a rotating list of 20 to 25 experimental beers exploring many different styles, ingredients, and brewing techniques.

Beyond a heavy rotation of experimental beers including juicy and hazy IPAs, and in keeping with the Dairies theme, The Imaginarium will use lactose in some of their beers to craft styles like milk stouts, fruit and cream sours, and milkshake IPAs currently gaining popularity in the marketplace. Its hope is to complement its beer offerings with small food plates from rotating kiosks or pop-up stations.”

Vacant since Italian milk company Parmalat shuttered in 2004, the reborn Atlanta Dairies property is expected to open in the spring, providing another Beltline-adjacent, adaptive-reuse hub and what Paces officials describe as “a new center of gravity for the city’s vibrant Eastside neighborhoods.”

The 11-acre site’s first phase will host more than 320 apartments at the northwestern edge. Meanwhile, in the commercial core, previously announced tenants include throwback-style Collier’s Department Store, a Thrive Farmers coffee shop, and a music venue (with a rooftop hangout) by the owners of Variety Playhouse and the Georgia Theatre in Athens.