Swamp Head Brewery started out small — really small. Since it’s conception in 2008, it has been on a carbon footprint, eco-friendly climb toward sustainability. And of course, good beer.
On an average night, from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., the bold and the brave wander into the brewery, located at 3650 SW 42nd Ave., and approach the bar where, in hipster scrawl, the name of current beers on tap wait for their consumers. A person doesn’t have to be skilled in beer talk, either. At Swamp Head, grab a stool and be ready to tell the beer masters a little about your tastes. That’s all it takes for the perfect match.
“If you just don’t like that it’s bubbly, then we may have a problem,” said Brandon Nappy, a beer enthusiast and the marketing director at Swamp Head. “If not, there is almost a hundred percent chance that we can find something for you.”
Variety is the name of the game, and from the common staples to special batches for the Taste Room, Swamp Head has a little something for almost everyone. Where did it all start? A commitment to keeping it local and planet friendly. On a trip to Georgia, you won’t be able to find Stump Knocker, or any other Swamp Head beers for that matter.
“We want to be Florida’s brewery,” Nappy said. “If we have our product going out that far, we can’t keep an eye on it like we can here.”
Nappy explained that keeping the product local allows them to pop into an establishment and have a beer to make sure all is well on the froth-front.
Along with a commitment to good-tasting beer, the environment is very important to Swamp Head, and the brewery has made several strides toward keeping it sustainable.
This Saturday, Swamp Head is teaming up with Gainesville Parks and Recreation to pick berries off of the invasive Coral Ardisia plants and throw them away. This prevents the berries from being eaten by birds and creating a monoculture that would disrupt the biodiversity.
The cleanup will happen at Bivens Arm Nature Park at 8:30 a.m., and all volunteers will be treated to a year-round beer from the Tasting Room at Swamp Head afterward. Twenty participants are needed and spots are filling up fast. A sign-up sheet can be found on Swamp Head’s Facebook page.
Swamp Head keeps their products Florida-based and make philanthropic efforts to reinvest in the community. At the end of the month, the brewery is putting together a trash-collecting competition with the prize being suds on the house.
As for Nappy, who teasingly reminds people it’s, “Nappy, just like happy, but with an ‘N,’” there is no such thing as a favorite beer.
“They’re all my babies,” he said. “You can’t have a favorite baby.”