Yesterday, I posted a list of breweries, bars and brewpubs that you should visit if you’re only in Portland Maine for part of a day – and have limited time to get the sense of Maine’s craft beer. Among the feedback that I got was the criticism that the well-known beer bar, Novare Res Bier Café wasn’t on my list – which people assumed I’d forgotten or perhaps had something against it.
It is easy to miss some of the best beer in Portland if you only go by what you’ve heard about. Due to the insulated nature of our state – most breweries (especially the crop that have opened in the last three years) keep their beers in Maine or New England, and many are on-premise or growler only, which doesn’t make it easy for non-locals to find them. The places or beers that out-of-state visitors have heard of are a combination of those that have a) been distributed the farthest, b) have been in existence the longest, or c) are the most sought after or talked about. That doesn’t necessarily mean that those are the first places that should be on a visitor’s list, however.
A few weeks ago, I lamented that I wished more breweries in Maine bottled or packaged their beer for bringing home. I stand by this – it’s less expensive for the consumer per beer, and there are times in which I just don’t feel like being social or bumping elbows with everyone at a packed bar. Seems like a few breweries were thinking along the same lines – and have begun to get in on the action
Once scarce, tasting rooms and tap rooms that are open to the public have become a part of Maine’s craft beer drinking …
I spend a lot of time talking with people about the beer scene in Maine, and all of the wonderful things it has to offer. Every once and a while, the topic of “what’s missing” comes up, and I’ve finally collected thoughts from many beer-fueled conversations. Here is a list of seven things that I’ve come up with.
Calcutta Cutter is the Imperial India Pale Ale from Rising Tide Brewing Company, and the latest batch was released only a about a week ago. The other night I casually ordered one off the menu at Arcadia National Bar, and it was delivered to me in a mason-jar style glass. I walked back to where my friends were playing Cards Against Humanity before I took the first sip – and then I had a moment.
One side effect of the rapid proliferation of craft breweries : Breweries in Maine don’t get to hold the title of “Maine’s Newest Brewery” very long. Barreled Souls in Saco opened on July 19 and held the title for three weeks, and Tumbledown Brewing in Farmington reigned as the “newest” for a slightly longer 27 days. And now, the torch is passing to the long-awaited Tributary Brewing Company in Kittery, lead by former Portsmouth Brewery and Harpoon Brewing Company brewer Tod Mott. Tod and his wife and co-owner Galen will open Tributary Saturday, bringing Maine’s total number of breweries to 55. [Read More…]