The latest addition to downtown Ball Ground, Rock Solid Brewing is seeing a great deal of success in its location on Gilmer Ferry Road.
Since opening its taproom doors at 345 Gilmer Ferry Road on Dec. 12, company co-owner Jim Gillum said things have been going very well.
“We didn’t know what to expect,” he said. “Our customers, they’re really glad we’re here. We have had so many repeat customers, and not all of them are locals.”
Over the course of two months, the number of beers offered on tap has expanded from six to 10, while also extending its hours of operation, adding Thursday to its initial open days of Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Board games and decks of cards are readily available for patrons to use while visiting the taproom, while live music is on hand to entertain customers on Saturday nights. For those wanting their drinks to go, Gillum added the brewery offers 32 ounce growler cans patrons can take with them to enjoy Rock Solid at home.
In addition to the brewery and taproom been successful in their own right, Rock Solid setting up shop in downtown Ball Ground has had a significant impact on other businesses in the vicinity.
“Not only has the opening been a big hit for Rock Solid, but it has also provided a great shot in the arm for other downtown businesses,” City Manager Eric Wilmarth said.
Gillum added to this, explaining he and his co-owners have heard from other shops in the area, including the Scooped on Main ice cream shop and some of the downtown boutique stores, saying they have seen an increase in sales at their own businesses.
Because the taproom does not offer food for sale, Gillum said customers are allowed to bring their own food in and enjoy along with a pint of Rock Solid’s many beers. For example, Gillum described how one family visiting the brewery over Valentine’s Day weekend brought in an entire picnic-like spread with them, while other customers visit nearby downtown restaurants, getting to-go orders before coming to the brewery. Arguably the strongest restaurant partnership Rock Solid has is with Dominic’s Truck and Dine. After entering the brewery, taproom patrons have the option of scanning a QR code, which allows them the ability to place an order with Dominic’s, pay on their phones, and then their order will be delivered directly to their table in the taproom.
Looking to the future, Gillum said the brewery is planning to add another day to its hours of operation, as the taproom will be open on Wednesdays starting on St. Patrick’s Day. Saturday night live music slots have been booked solid all the way through June, while additional entertainment will soon be offered in the form of music bingo on Thursday nights. Building off of the partnerships forged with restaurants in the area, he also said the brewery is in the early stages of looking into the possibility of offering keg distribution to these restaurants. Lastly, he said following Rock Solid on social media was a great way for patrons to keep up with all the latest updates on what’s going on.
“We appreciate everybody’s business and support, and we look forward to more growth,” Gillum said.