We try to start this newsletter out in a lighthearted way, but to be honest, we’re not feeling very jovial today following yesterday’s events in our nation’s capital. Instead, we want to say how much we love our breweries, our state, and our loyal readers.
We hope you’re all taking good care of yourself and your loved ones, and to remember that we have more in common than that which divides us. And if you’re reading this, one thing we definitely all have in common is a shared love for delicious Maine craft beer.
On that note, here’s this week’s guide to the latest beer releases, rundowns of what’s on tap, upcoming brewery events, and a roundup of Maine beer news.
Beer This Week is Sponsored by: Tigpro Stainless Fabrication
Tigpro specializes in the design, fabrication, and installation of high-quality, custom-built brewing systems, tanks, process piping, and supporting equipment to the brewing industry. With more than a decade of experience, the Tigpro team can design a brewing system to meet your brewery’s unique needs.
Upcoming Releases & Events
The holidays may be behind us, but there’s still plenty to look forward to, starting with a birthday celebration and lots of delicious new beer releases including an IPA, a pair of Stouts, and a serving of Second Dinner!
Thursday, January 7
Fogtown Brewing Company
25 Pine St, Ellsworth
Fogtown’s Third Bday!
Fogtown is out of the terrible twos, and into their thirsty threes! They’ll be celebrating their third birthday outdoors with a special beer release and pizza night in the Beer Garden. Join them for a pie and a pint, and maybe some cake too. There will also be a special discount on growlers!
Friday, January 8
Maine Beer Company
525 U.S. 1, Freeport
Second Dinner (8%)
Second Dinner is only the second DIPA that Maine Beer Company has brewed. From their original “whale” Lunch to their DIPA Dinner, Maine Beer Company’s hoppy beers always leave us wanting more, so naturally, we always are ready for seconds. Second Dinner has notes of bright citrus, pineapple, and a strong fruit aroma. It utilizes Amarillo, Citra, HBC 522, and Idaho 7 hops. Second Dinner will be available in bottles for curbside pickup and on draft in the tasting room starting at 11 am.
Definitive Brewing Company
35 Industrial Way, Portland and 318 US Route 1, Kittery
Behind the Light, IPA (7.4%)
Behind the Light is back this weekend! This all-American double dry-hopped IPA is brewed with Citra, Mosaic, and Simcoe hops. It tastes and smells like freshly sliced cantaloupe, tropical fruit juice, and FruitStripeTM bubblegum. The release of four-packs and draught pours will be happening Friday in Portland and Saturday in Kittery.
Lone Pine Brewing Company
219 Anderson Street, Portland & 48 Sanford Drive, Bldg. B, Gorham
CHOCO TUESDAY, Imperial Stout (8%)
This Imperial Stout may be based on the folks at Lone Pine’s favorite novelty ice cream bar, but at 8% ABV, you don’t have to worry about it cooling you down this winter. CHOCO TUESDAY offers the rich and sweet entanglement of chocolate and vanilla complemented by background notes of peanut, pecan, and pleasant roasted malt that will warm your cheeks against the falling snow.
Mast Landing Brewing Company
920 Main St., Westbrook
Level, Imperial Milk Stout (8.5%)
Level is a Stout for those who crave balance — a touch sweet, a touch roasty. Coconut, vanilla, and lactose help this beer level out into something truly unbeatable.
Some of this week’s releases might have you running to check your calendar to figure out what day, or even year, it is. In addition to a Christmas Ale, we have an ode to Daylight Savings, St. Patrick’s Day, and even the Ice Storm of ’98. Did someone in the Maine brewing scene get their hands on a DeLorean?!
Airline Brewing Company
11 Mill Ln., Amherst
Irish Envy, White Stout (5.8%)
RIP St. Patrick’s Day 2020, but Airline Brewing decided to start 2021 off right by gifting us with Irish Envy. This mellow coffee and chocolate infused white stout is hitting select stores across Maine this week. Slainte!
Austin Street Brewery
1 Industrial Way, #8, Portland & 115 Fox St., Portland
Paseo, West Coast IPA (6.5%)
That’s right, the time has arrived for Austin Street’s annual drop of Paseo, their west coast IPA. Dank, nicely bitter, and maltier than their usual IPA style, this is a welcome change-up from all the new world IPAs.
Baxter Brewing Co.
120 Mill St., Lewiston
Ice Storm of ’98, New England IPA (5.8%)
Storms can be inconvenient, but it’s all in how we handle it — and as Mainers have proved time and time again, we can handle it. With a lush malt profile and dynamic citrus, fruit-forward hop profile, this New England IPA is brewed to help get us through any weather. For you young’uns and folks from away, the name is an homage to one of the biggest storms Mainers experienced in decades, the Ice Storm of ’98, which coated the state in ice and left some folks without power for weeks. If you listen closely, you can almost hear WCSH’s StormCenter theme with every sip… Pairs well with a broken shear pin, grilled cheese, and tomato soup, and drying your gear by the fire.
Fogtown Brewing Company
25 Pine St, Ellsworth
Daylight Savings, Sour (8%)
Daylight Savings is a mixed fermentation Passionfruit Sour Ale blended with key lime lager and aged for one year in tequila and bourbon American oak barrels. This is a bottle-conditioned limited small-batch release, so get on it!
396 Fore St., Portland; 187 Lower Main St., Freeport; and 68 Main St., Auburn
Scottish Ale (6.1%)
It takes a brave beer to stand up to a Maine winter, which is why Gritty McDuff’s Scottish Ale returns every January to help you weather the season. Scottish Ale is Gritty’s interpretation of the robust brews native to Scotland. Generous quantities of pale malt along with Munich and Caramalts give this ale a deep and complex profile. Scottish Ale is just a shade darker than the Bitter, with a rich, slightly sweet first impression on the palate that rounds out to a satisfying maltiness and a medium-dry hop finish. At 6.1% ABV, it is hearty, but not overwhelming. Sure to please the Braveheart in all of us!
Liquid Riot Bottling Company
250 Commercial St., Portland
Special Ale (7%)
This UK-style winter warmer is rich, deep, and complex with notes of toffee and caramel. Just in time to keep you warm and cozy by the fireplace during those cold January nights.
Lubec Brewing Company
41 Water St., Lubec
Maine Brewers Guild Collaboration IPA (6.5%)
Check out Lubec Brewing’s take on the Maine Brewers Guild Collaboration IPA, one of their 14 beers on tap. It’s totally unique when compared to their regular offering of traditional styles of beer. It’s super hoppy, super fruity, and super delicious. If you can, swing by on Saturday when their outdoor beer garden will be open from 11 to 5 with fire pits and heaters.
Moderation Brewing Company
103 Maine St., Brunswick
JULEØL, Norwegian Christmas Ale (7%), Ex-Bourbon Ex-Gin Barrel-Aged JULEØL (7.3%), and Puttin’ On the Spritz (5.6%)
This seasonal Norwegian Christmas Ale is a strong amber with locally foraged juniper berries and Maine grains. With notes of toffee, caramel, spicy juniper, and wood, JULEØL is perfect for warming up in front of the fireplace. Ex-Bourbon Ex-Gin Barrel-Aged JULEØL is the same Norwegian Christmas Ale but aged 12 months in a barrel for a smoother, sweeter beer. Puttin’ On the Spritz is a Hard Seltzer with a Scandi twist with gin-inspired flavors of orange zest and juniper berries.
Nonesuch River Brewing
201 Gorham Road, Scarborough
PIVOT IPA #2 (6.2%)
Bursting with citrus juice aroma, PIVOT IPA #2 features Citra and Apollo hops for a smooth mouthfeel complimented by a bright hoppy finish. Hazy, juicy, and coming in at 6.2%, this is the droid IPA you’ve been looking for.
Ricker Hill Mainiac Hard Cider
11 Ricker Hill Rd., Turner
Mainiac Gold Cranberry, Cider (5%)
Mainiac Gold Cranberry is made from a crisp mix of Ricker Hill’s favorite apple varieties, tart cranberries, and a splash of apple syrup. Sweet with a snap, this sparkling beverage has been crafted to tantalize your taste buds and accompany any occasion.
Side By Each Brewing Co.
1110 Minot Ave., Auburn
Old Acquaintance, American Barleywine (10.2%) and Cup of Kindness, English Barleywine (9.6%)
Old Acquaintance and Cup of Kindness Barleywines were brewed in collaboration with Lake St. George Brewing Company and have been aging for the last year. Old Acquaintance is amber-colored and drinks almost like a double IPA with strong hop character from Centennial and Chinook hops. Cup of Kindness is slightly sweeter and warming.
SoMe Brewing Company
1 York St., Unit 3, York
Apostrophe, American IPA (6%)
Featuring British Malts, flaked oats, and 100% mosaic hops, Apostrophe is SoMe’s flagship beer. A tropical pineapple and pine nose gives way to a balanced and lightly bitter body underneath. Found somewhere between the west coast and New England style IPA, Apostrophe is always a reliable go-to.
Help support local breweries while sampling these flagship beers and rising stars. Here’s a taste of what you’ll be able to enjoy at select breweries this week.
Geary Brewing Co.
38 Evergreen Dr., Portland
- Riverside IPA (7.2%)
- Brown Ale (5.5%)
- Fort Knight, Pale Ale (5.3%)
- Razzle Dazzle, Sour (4.8%)
- Welcome Home Stout (6%)
Lone Pine Brewing
219 Anderson St., Portland
- World’s Best Boss Stout, Imperial/Double Milk Stout (7.7%)
- Pines of Wrath, New England IPA (7.2%)
- Laser Show, Pale Ale (5%)
- T-Shirt Cannon, IPA (7.7%)
- Portland Pale Ale (5.2%)
Rising Tide Brewing Company
103 Fox St., Portland
- Back Cove, Pilsner (5.1%)
- Waypoint, Coffee Porter (5%)
- Mountainside, New England IPA (6.0%)
- Cran-Raspberry Squadron, Fruited Kettle Sour (5.7%)
- Welcome Home, Winter Warmer (7.1%)
Maine Beer in the News
Extra, extra Portland is named one of the best cities in the country for craft beer! But you knew that already. Still, it’s always fun to hear. Read all about that, as well as where the best shops are to buy it, in this week’s headlines.
“They say you can’t get bad wine in France. You can’t get bad beer in a place where the standards are so high,” said one local brewer.
In the city or at the mountain, there’s sure to be one somewhat nearby.
A boost in direct-to-consumer sales tapered off toward the end of the year, and for the first time in more than a decade, production of Maine craft beer dropped.
Lisa Graham realized early on that the coronavirus would upend how she and her husband Shaun planned to run their small brewery in rural Maine and survive.
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 us to learn more.
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