It’s cold and more snow is on the way. Didn’t we write something similar last week, except in the reverse order? We’d say it feels like “Groundhog Day,” but technically that’s next week. However, that does make us nostalgic for the time back in 2014 when Novare Res Bier Café and dozens of New England breweries collaborated to create Bill Murray Beer Week in an attempt to lure Mr. Murray to Maine. While it didn’t work (that we know of…), it did result in some truly enjoyable beers with names like “Lost in Fermentation,” “Groundhog Day IPA,” and “Rauchmore.” Here’s to all the brewers who tried to make our collective dream come true, and here’s to the legendary Bill Murray. Cheers!
Here’s this week’s guide to upcoming brewery events, the latest beer releases, and a roundup of Maine beer news.
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Upcoming Releases & Events
Foundation is singing a new Song, Geary is getting their Irish on a bit ahead of schedule, the Fogtown brewers are pulling a Double Shift, and a Ghost Monkey is getting ready to haunt your taste buds over at Barreled Souls.
Thursday, January 27
Bissell Brothers Brewing
38 Resurgam Place, Portland & 157 Elm St., Milo
Precept, Pilsner (5.6%)
This German-style pilsner is brewed with a Maine Pils malt base, hopped with Saaz and Mittelfruh, and horizontally lagered for over a month.
Foundation Brewing Company
1 Industrial Way #5, Portland
Valkyrie’s Song, New England Double IPA (8%)
Your epic adventure awaits! Valkyrie’s Song is a New England Double IPA, aggressively hopped with Mosaic, Galaxy, and El Dorado. Big, juicy notes of papaya, cantaloupe, mandarin orange and more tropical fruit give Valkyrie’s Song its hoppy wings. It’s super creamy, soft, and with low bitterness, it hides its 8% ABV well with major drinkability.
Geary Brewing Co.
38 Evergreen Dr., Portland
Irish Red Ale (6%)
Irish Red Ale is the perfect transition to help you shift from the dark beers of winter to the lighter beers of summer. The malty sweetness and little hop bitterness are sure to please any palate. Irish Red Ale is being released for a limited time to celebrate Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day, so stock up while you can!
Liquid Riot Bottling Company
250 Commercial St., Portland
Citrine, IPA (6%)
Citrine is a hazed IPA, double dry hopped with Citra, Simcoe, and Chinook.
Friday, January 28
Definitive Brewing Company
35 Industrial Way, Portland; 318 US Rte. 1, Kittery; and 8 Timberline Dr., Newry (Sunday River)
Bicoastal, Triple Dry Hopped Triple IPA (10%) & Schmoojphoric Nights, Raspberry Cheesecake Double Fruited Sour Ale (6.5%)
The Definitive team had a meeting of the minds (and the mash) with their San Diego friends North Park Beer Co. and decided to create this over-the-top, triple dry hopped, triple IPA. Bicoastal is brewed with Citra Incognito, Idaho 7, Topaz, Enigma, and El Dorado. It’s a 10% ABV heavy-hitter that packs a myriad of flavors from tropical to dank and everything in between.
One of our favorite Definitive collabs from the past is back this week. They once again teamed up with their friends at Imprint Beer Company, and are ready to re-introduce you to Schmoojphoric Nights. This thick smoothie has been dosed with an exorbitant amount of raspberry, graham cracker and cheesecake. It really does taste like a liquified dessert.
Both beers will be available Friday in Portland, and Saturday at Kittery and Sunday River.
Fogtown Brewing Company
25 Pine St., Ellsworth and 33 Cottage St., Bar Harbor
Night Nurse Double Shift, Imperial Milk Stout (9.4%) & Moonjuice, Session IPA (4.8%)
An imperial version of Fogtown’s flagship American stout, Night Nurse Double Shift is conditioned on coffee beans, organic cacao nibs, and vanilla.
First launched in 2018 as the third in Fogtown’s limited bottle releases, Moonjuice is a session IPA aged six months in gin barrels with juniper and cardamom.
York Beach Beer Company
33 Railroad Ave., York
03910, Double Dry Hopped New England IPA (5.8%)
03910. It’s both the postal code for York Beach, Maine, and a beer name that the York Beach brewing team had written down for quite some time. Now it’s finally making its way into the world as their latest upcoming beer, a double dry hopped New England IPA.
03910 has two meanings. York Beach Beer is located in the old York Beach post office, and despite being located only a few miles from their sister brewery, SoMe Brewing, they’re truly in a different part of town, and have a deep appreciation for the beauty that York Beach offers year-round.
Barreled Souls Brewing
743 Portland Rd., Saco
Ghost Monkey, Sour
Ghost Monkey is a new sour made with raspberry, chocolate, and hazelnut, and it will be available in cans and on draft. Keep your eyes peeled on Barreled Souls’s social media for updated on the release as it is dependent on when the impending storm hits (Gutner!!!!).
There’s a New Wave at Nonesuch, Flight Deck swears I’ve Never Done that Before, a Purple Rain is falling over at Cushnoc and a Foxfire is raging at Bunker. Meanwhile, someone cast a Hex at Belleflower and Death is stalking the tasting room of Bangor Beer. We don’t know about you, but we scared ourselves just WRITING this intro. This is what happens when you live in the land of Stephen King…
Bangor Beer Co.
330 Bangor Mall Blvd., Bangor
Killed by Death, Imperial Stout (9.5%)
Jet black in color, Killed by Death is packed with malty flavor and the aroma of bittersweet chocolate, coffee, and a touch of vanilla. A perfect beer to sip away the end (death?) of winter.
66 Cove St., Portland
Barn Hex, Double IPA (8.5%)
A staff favorite, Barn Hex is brewed with Mosaic, Strata, and El Dorado in the dry hop and pours pale gold with heavy haze. The aroma features big melon vibes on the nose, as well as hints of honeydew, cantaloupe, strawberry, wildflowers, rose water, fresh-cut grass, and orange. The flavor follows the aroma with melon, strawberry, and flowers.
17 Westfield St., Unit D, Portland
Foxfire, Porter (8%)
Foxfire began its life as a robust porter that was then aged in maple rum barrels for almost two years. You can expect notes of tobacco and dark fruit, with a nice touch of oak balancing out the flavors. This is a beer built for sharing with friends in the doldrums of a Maine January.
Cushnoc Brewing Co.
40 Front St. and 243 Water St., Augusta
Purple Rain, Belgian Tripel (9.5%)
A lavender-infused Belgian Tripel aged in gin barrels, Purple Rain has floral lavender and gin botanical aromas, and a subtle alcohol warmth.
Flight Deck Brewing
11 Atlantic Ave., Brunswick
I’ve Never Done That Before, Lager (5.3%) & Subhunter, Imperial IPA (9.1%)
Flight Deck brewed I’ve Never Done That Before, a dark Czech-style lager, in collaboration with their friends at Side By Each Brewing Co. using old-fashioned Bohemian malts, old-fashioned Czech hops, old-fashioned brewing techniques, and a lot of old-fashioned camaraderie. You can find it on draft at both Flight Deck and Side By Each.
Subhunter has a cult following, and for good reason. With a blast of tropical hops upfront and a smooth finish despite its high ABV, this brew is sure to impress you. Just make sure you’re flying in the passenger seat!
Island Dog Brewing
125 John Roberts Rd., Unit 15, South Portland
Black Forest Chocolate Cherry, Porter (5.2%)
A taproom favorite, Black Forest Chocolate Cherry is brewed with cocoa and fermented on cherries.
Mast Landing Brewing Company
920 Main St., Westbrook and 200 Lower Main St., Freeport
Sanctuary, IPA (7%) & Green to Green Batch #33, IPA (7%)
Sanctuary is a bold and accessible landmark as Mast Landing builds a new path in their story with the expansion into Freeport. Citra, Rakau, El Dorado, and Strata hops bring out notes of mango, pineapple, lime, and red berries.
Green to Green is a constant evolution—a rotating hop IPA designed to showcase Mast Landing’s latest endeavors at the brewhouse, while expanding the possibilities of what represents a Mast Landing IPA.
The 33rd iteration of Green to Green features three hops from the Pacific Northwest: Amarillo, Falconer’s Flight, and Azacca. The beer pours light orange in color with a moderate haze and white foam. It has a flavor profile straight from the tropics, with notes of guava, passionfruit, pineapple, and a touch of fresh-squeezed orange juice.
Nonesuch River Brewing Company
201 Gorham Road, Scarborough
New Wave Pale Ale (6.4%)
This hazy beer is brewed with Cascade, Chinook, and Centennial hops, and packed with the classic floral, pine, and orange aromas you might expect from a classic American pale ale. Their essence is quickly subverted by abundant flavors of guava, white grape, and passionfruit that washes over your lips like a tropical fruit wave.
Side By Each Brewing Co.
1110 Minot Ave., Auburn
Smoked Slammin’ Porter, (4.8%)
A classic robust porter, Smoked Slammin’ Porter is brewed with a stage whisper of Bavarian beechwood smoked malt.
Maine Beer in the News
New breweries are opening up, Maine’s beer industry is on the up and up, and more Maine brewers are offering nonalcoholic options for people who want to drink up (but skip the alcohol).
The brewery is located between Main Street and Route 196.
According to an economic impact report, Maine brewers managed to add $260,662,701 to the state economy in 2020, despite business interruptions.
Joel and Jona Fitzpatrick opened their years-in-the-making brewery and taproom, Katahdin Brew Works, in the Penobscot County town of Patten, right on the Aroostook County line.
These breweries are making breaking from booze a lot easier to swallow.
We hope you enjoyed this edition of Maine Beer This Week! If you own a brewery or other beer business and would like to be featured in upcoming issues, please email or call us to learn more at [email protected] (207) 209-2094