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First beer sold over the bar in Gainesville brewery
Left Nut Brewing Co. has applauded law changes, which took effect Sept. 1
Shawn Stafford, right, laughs with a friend after buying the first glass of beer sold by Left Nut Brewing Co. on Friday, when Georgia's new law allowing direct sales at breweries went into effect. Stafford bought a wheat beer. - photo by Nick Bowman

Shawn Stafford went out for a beer on Friday and ended up making a historic purchase.

Stafford bought the first beer sold over the bar of a brewery in Gainesville after Georgia’s new law allowing direct sales went into effect at the start of September.

He bought a wheat beer from Left Nut Brewing Co. just after noon on Friday. He’s been a customer of the brewery on Athens Highway for about a year.

Georgia’s new law for brewery sales is a broad cut of regulations on the alcohol producers. It was signed into law by Gov. Nathan Deal in May.

In announcing its Friday celebration of the law, Left Nut Brewing Co. said Deal would attend the event at the brewery. However, brewery co-owner Ashesh Banerjea said shortly after noon on Friday that the governor had a conflicting meeting and couldn’t attend.

Deal’s chief of staff, Chris Riley, said in an email that Deal was meeting with a business looking to move to Georgia and noted that the brewery event was “never on our official schedule.”

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