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Catch 22 Gastropub Churns Out Best Craft Beer and Unique Eats

By Marina I. Jokic

Delicious, high-end American food and fresh, locally brewed beer are the top selling points at Catch 22 Gastropub. Located in Athens, the pub and restaurant prides itself on hearty American fare, a rich assortment of drafts, and exceptional whiskeys, the key elements of a classic Southern restaurant. Add to all of that an outdoor patio, and your summer evenings have just been given a major boost. A unique gastronomic experience, Catch 22 has mastered the art of serving up delicious bites and characteristically fresh beer.

Pub owner Richard Miley has run the place for the last three and a half years, and is slated to open a second location in Helen, Georgia. Catch 22's success is owed to its culinary prowess and unique selection of craft beers, but also to their customer-centered approach. When you dine at Catch 22, you won't feel rushed upon completing your meal. On the contrary, the atmosphere and staff work together to create the perfect blend of relaxation and attentiveness.

"I wanted to help expand the craft beer scene outside of Watkinsville and Athens, and create a menu that would separate [us] from Chops and Hops and other restaurants in the area," Miley said.

The drink menu is chock-full of not-your-average draft beers like the Bold Rock Peach Cider, which Miley likens to a dry wine with complex flavors. Another popular choice is the Bell's Oberon Ale, a wheat ale fermented with house ale yeast and mixed with spicy hops. The Omaha Nada-Banana harkens to traditional German-style Weissbier and boasts prominent banana and clove aromas, while the Creature Comforts Cosmik Debris is an intensely hoppy pale ale with minimal malt flavor.

The roundup of draft and canned beers at Catch 22 is impressive, featuring ciders and meads, blond and pale ales, wheat beers, and porters and stouts among many others. There's even a specialty beer section that is updated frequently with interesting, sui generis infusions.

"The atmosphere at Catch 22 is energetic and fun, but with a slight laid-back feel," Miley said. "For me, it all starts with the Porknado burger. It's every pork lover's dream complete with smoke pork, bacon jam, cider brined bacon, and bacon mayo. It's perfect."

His goal is to afford customers a memorable dining experience, one marked by exceptional, fine-dining level service and a relaxed and casual atmosphere. Just like the wide variety of spirits, the dinner menu showcases an eclectic mix of Southern favorites.

Among the many options, there is the Bad Mother Clucker which is made with garlic cheddar biscuits and their fried chicken in pickle brine, topped with pepper jack cheese and pickles. Sandwiches include blackened tuna with wasabi slaw, Southern B.L.T. with fried green tomatoes and Cajun mayo, and the El Cubano with smoky, roasted pork.

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About The Author

Marina Jokic holds a bachelor's degree from Connecticut College in Russian and East...

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