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uch in the way that

Maine has become
a hidden gem of
craft breweries in
the country, Greater Bangor is a
sort of dark horse within the states
beer scene a community quietly making a big name for itself by
producing some of the finest beer
Maine has to offer. And, with a tight
community of brewers, each one
enjoys and thrives off the support

of one another while having a blast

with the competition.
The areas beer industry is spearheaded by four breweries: Black
Bear Microbrew (Orono), Sea Dog
Brewing Co. (Bangor), Geaghan
Brothers Brewing Co. (Bangor) and
Penobscot Bay Brewing (Winterport). Even the state-renowned Friars Bakehouse has gotten into the
game with its Bucksport location
Friars Brewhouse, which just made
its beer available to the public last
year. And, in addition to those mak-

ing beer, consumers in the area have

become increasingly sophisticated
with the help of establishments such
as Nocturnem Draft Haus and Blaze
restaurant and bar offering a nice
selection of local and domestic craft
beers, as well as somewhat obscure
international options.
The Bangor scene is really being
driven by local businesses, said Andrew Geaghan, owner and brewer
of Geaghan Brothers Brewing Co, at
Bangors annual Tap Into Summer
brew fest on June 21.
I was very scared, to be honest,
when [Hollywood Casino Hotel
and Raceway] came into town. We
knew it was going to be an influx
of people, we knew it was going to
be an influx of money, but I was
afraid it was going to turn Bangor
into a sort of cookie-cutter, chain
restaurant sort of affair. And the
local business community has really
stepped up to the plate and owned
it, and embraced the casino in a
positive way, and turned what could
have been this white-washing sort
of effect into a real coloring of our
In turn, Bangor has blossomed
into a place where young entrepreneurs can thrive, including the local
brewers who can contribute to the
burgeoning Maine beer scene. But
what is it that draws so many Bangorians and other Mainers into the

I think some of it is Maine independence, you know, everyone likes
to do it their way, said Mike Anderson, owner and brewer of Penobscot
Bay Brewery, at the Tap Into Summer fest. And, for Anderson, theres
also the appeal that Winterports
water chemistry is uncannily similar
to that of Munich, Germany. Its
great for wine, but for Anderson, its
even better for beer.
Basically I tend to hold my beer
to the German purity law, he said.
Water, grain, barley primarily, a
little bit of wheat I like wheat because it makes nice texture yeast
and hops. Anything else, it doesnt
qualify as beer in Germany. I do
have one beer that doesnt fit that, I
make a honey ginger lager. Because
it has Winterport honey in it, local

Maine honey in it, and it has Mainegrown ginger in it.

Geaghan, on the other hand,
prides himself on bringing American-style ales to Bangor.
We felt like when we came
into the game three years ago, the
American beer scene was dominated by English-style beers. Which
is fine. Theres nothing wrong with
it. Theyre big, malty beers, said
This hop-forward, clean malt
profile, American-stye beer is just
growing in this country, and thats
what we wanted to bring into the
Maine market. Its kind of us, guys
like Sebago; Baxter came into the
game with that style, Rising Tide
has that style. And we try to be Bangors beer, really.
But ultimately, despite different

tastes and approaches, Bangors

brewers display a sense of unity and
cooperation that Anderson described as unbelievable. Each beer
maker is ready to lend a hand to
their fellow brewers at a moments
Bangors really growing. Its a fun
place to be. Its vibrant, its alive,
said Geaghan.
There are a lot of festivities, a lot
of festivals, a lot of concerts, just a
lot of fun local stuff going on. And
the beer community is a big part of

Written & Photographed by

Joel Crabtree


hen I started toying

with the idea of creating a local Maine
craft beer issue for
Campfire Magazine, it wasnt long
before friends of mine were discussing a trip to some of Portlands
many craft breweries for research.
And who was I to say no? After
all, what better way to get a feel for
the unique, diverse and downright
awesome craft beer industry in
Maine than by experiencing it with
fellow beer lovers? So in early June,
I hopped in the car with my pals
Jason Ridley and Zach Pushard to
see what was brewing in Maines

microbrew capital.
Our first stop was at the birthplace of multiple local breweries
including Rising Tide Brewing
Company and Maine Beer Company, One Industrial Way, located near

the intersection of Forest Avenue

and Riverside Drive in Portland.
We chose the unofficial craft brew
incubator to learn more about the
new guys in town, Foundation
Brewing Company and Bissell Bros.
Brewing Company. These new kids
on the block, so to speak, have set
up shop right across the street from
long time craft beer powerhouse,
Allagash Brewing Company. And
in perfect freshman form, we found
the garage doors open with the two
breweries open for visitors that were
flooding the parking lot in block
party fashion on this beautiful, sunny Saturday.
We arrived at Foundation Brewing and were immediately welcomed in by the staff serving up
delicious samples of their tasty
brews. I was first handed the Eddy,
a Saison with the perfect summertime feel. We headed into the
brewery with our samples in hand
and immediately run into John
Bonney, co-founder of the brewery. John was watching a small
group of visitors play beanbag toss
in amongst mash tuns and brewing
Its all about getting people in
here, having a good time, and tasting our beer. Bonney said with a
We discuss the appeal of the
building for start up brewers with

its cement floors and drainage; John

also explains to us that each week
they offer a new infused Saison.
Each weeks flavor is created with
whatever inspires John or partner
Joel Mahaffey.
It may be an exotic fruit, or it
may be the smell of Thai food when
Im walking down the street. It
keeps it fun. Bonney said.
We sampled that weeks experiment, an infused lemon and lime
Saison, which was perfect for the
weather. It was light and fruity and
we couldnt help but savor every
drop knowing it would be replaced
the following week.

After leaving Foundation Brewing

we walked next door to visit Bissell
Bros. Like Foundation, a large gathering spilled out into the parking
lot. We meandered through the
group and found our way to the

tasting bar. Knowing we would not

likely make it back to the bar and be
able to keep our schedule, we went
right for the flagship Substance Ale.
As we enjoyed the sweet and slight
bitter notes that keep this beer in
such high demand, we watched
6-pack after 6-pack go out the door
with true Substance Ale lovers.

Eager to continue our journey, we

head off to the Bayside neighborhood to visit Rising Tide Brewing
Company and Maine Craft Distilling.
Maine Craft Distilling made its
name with its signature Blueshine,
a blueberry moonshine made with
real Maine blueberries. We were
greeted by Wesley, who was eager
to tell us about the spirits theyve
been developing, and of course pour
samples of their Blueshine, Black
Cap Vodka, Alchemy Gin and Queequeg Spiced Rum.
I was surprised at how smooth
each offering was. It would almost
be a shame to mix these local hand
made spirits with any run of the

mill mixer, although Wesley does

suggest trying their Blueshine with
a glass of lemonade.
Before heading to Hadlock Field,
to end our trip with a Portland Sea
Dogs game, we head next door to
the Rising Tide Brewing Company.
Rising Tide has quickly risen in the
ranks of Portland craft breweries,
offering an extensive variety of
beers and making their way onto
the shelves of most grocers beer
I was looking forward to sampling
the hefeweizen, known as Spinnaker, and it did not disappoint. The
smooth, hazy, German wheat beer is
packed with summertime flavor and
is a personal favorite for me.
We experience the Daymark
American Pale Ale (Jasons favorite), Zephyr IPA (Zachs Favorite),
Ishmael (the beer that started it all
for Rising Tide) and the Maine Island Trail Ale before snapping some
photos and heading out to catch the
Its truly incredible to see what
these local brewers are putting
together in the small corners of
Portland and around Maine. Get
out and explore.
- Tom Tash


ount Desert Island,

home to some of
Maines greatest treasures including Bar
Harbor and Acadia National Park,
has been quietly holding its own in
the local craft beer and wine industry since the early 1990s. Shortly
after Bar Harbor Brewing Company founders, Tod and Suzi Foster
opened up shop in the tiny island
town; Doug Maffucci opened Acadia Brewing Company, which would
grow to become Atlantic Brewing
The two breweries co-existed on
Mount Desert for nearly 20 years,
Bar Harbor brewing tasty batches of
their Cadillac Mountain Stout, Harbor Lighthouse Ale, Thunder Hole
Ale and True Blue Blueberry Wheat
Ale; and Atlantic Brewing with their
Bar Harbor Real Ale, Coal Porter,
Mount Desert Island Ginger and of
course the Bar Harbor Blueberry
Ale, until 2009 when Bar Harbor
Brewing went up for sale for the
second time in a year.
Not wanting to see the brand
his cross-town competitors had
developed for two decades go out
of business, Maffuci purchased the
brewery to run in partnership with
his company. Atlantic Brewing had
outgrown its location in town and
relocated to its present location off
Route 3 near the entrance to Mount

Desert Island. This purchase would

allow Atlantic the opportunity to
keep a presence in downtown Bar
Harbor as well as their large facility,
and were glad they did.

I could not wait to get to the

island with my wife, Emma. Travelling to Bar Harbor and Acadia
National Park was and will always
be a once a summer tradition and
this particular weekend marked our
first wedding anniversary, so we
decided rather than disappear down
a peaceful trail or spend the day on
the quiet side of the island, that wed

spend the day getting the out-oftowner perspective.

It was a beautiful day, sunny and
72 and we had made a rough itinerary in our minds while we drove
down route 3. Our first stop would
be the summit of Cadillac Moun-

tain. Its obvious, predictable and

still almost too grand to take in,
no matter how many times we go.
Growing up and to this day Im a
National Park nerd, so naturally I
picked up my annual Acadia National Park gear at the gift shop and
we headed back down the mountain
into town.
It was quarter of 11 when we
found a parking space near Geddys,
which was perfect as we figured we
could stroll through some shops
on our way to Bar Harbor Brewing.

Yes, 11:00am is an appropriate time

to sample craft beer when on vacation.
Once we arrived, and after perusing the t-shirts and pint glasses to
not seem too eager, we entered the
tasting room to join another couple that was halfway through their
flight of 4oz samplers. We began
with the Atlantic Brewing Summer
Ale, which was the lightest of the
four beers on tap and also a sign of
the working partnership between
both brands. The Summer Ale was
the perfect jumping off point for
what we knew was going to be a
great day. From the Summer Ale we
moved on to the classic True Blue
Blueberry Wheat Ale, a deliciously
light take on a flavor that is often
overdone in just about everything.
This beer keeps you waiting, giving
you just enough of a real blueberry
kiss after the sip to shove you right
back for another. Spoiler alert, I
walked out with a 6-pack of the
True Blue and am enjoying one
The darker half was just as exciting. The Thunder Hole Ale is
a classic, familiar friend to me; it
was almost unfair to only sample
4 ounces. The flavor of this beer
has become a taste-track to many
wonderful summers, so rather than
try and strip that all away and describe it perhaps you should just

try it yourself. Finally, we reached

the Cadillac Mountain Stout, a
surprisingly smooth offering that
suggests that stouts are not just for
long Maine winters. The pleasing
coffee-ish finish is an unexpected
reward for completing the entire
We shook a few hands, picked up

some items from the gift shop and

headed off to our next oceanside
Disclaimer: While this is The
Beer Issue we are lovers of all
things grown, harvested, caught,
raised, brewed or fermented in our
great state; therefore a pit stop at
the Bar Harbor Cellars Winery and
Sweet Pea Farm seemed in order.
For Emma, this was the highlight
of the trip and for me it was an

education. We sampled roughly a

dozen varieties of white, red and
fruit wines, all beautifully executed. Not being a wine expert, nor
would I ever pretend to be, I found
incredible complex flavors I had not
experienced in any store brand. If
youre a beer person, like me, visit a
local winery.
We ended the day by visiting the
Atlantic Brewing Company estate.
The brewery is located on a residential road between Bar Harbor and
Town Hill, in a converted house
that blends in with the neighborhood around it. The grounds are
beautiful and we found ourselves
admiring the peaceful grounds as
we approached the visitor center.
The outdoor common area was bus-

tling with beer fans awaiting tours

and tastings as well as BBQ lovers
enjoying Mainely Meats brewery
We entered the tasting room and,
again, visited the gift shop while
we waited to sample the suds. We
decided to focus on two of Atlantics
offerings, having experienced the
Summer Ale earlier at Bar Harbor
Brewing Company. Beginning with
the Coal Porter, an American Porter, dark with chocolate and black
malts. The deep, rich flavor rounded out our palate and was a great
way to set up our final sample, the
Mount Desert Island Ginger. This
beer, born in 1993, was inspired by
the aroma of the neighboring Thai
restaurant next to the original brewery location. Keeping with the free
nature in which it was created, the
beer ventures outside of the more
traditional local beers, providing a
unique ginger root spice alongside a
delightful wheat foundation.
- Tom Tash

Steins & Vines at Maine Lobster Festival
July 31st, 2014
Maine Lobster Festival
Maine Lighthouse Museum in Rockland.
Limited to 250 guests. Local beer and wine tasting

BrewFest at KahBang

August 8th & 9th, 2014

KahBang Music & Arts Festival
Bangor Waterfront
-Keg party, BBQ, Homebrewers Expo, tastings of over
40 micro-brews, and more!

Portland Brew Festival

August 30th & 31st, 2014

The Portland Company
58 Fore St. Portland
40 Breweries
110+ Beers to sample
Overlooking Casco Bay on the edge of the Old Port

Maine Lakes Brew Fest

Sepetmber 27th, 2014

on the Beach at Point Sebago - Naples, ME
30 Breweries & Live Music

Acadias Oktoberfest

October 11th, 2014

at Smugglers Den Campground
20 Main St., Southwest Harbor
For More Information visit:

Central Maine Brew Fest

October 18th, 2014

Augusta Armory
Come in Costume! Sample 30+ Brews!

Brew Festivals
Maine Brewers Festival

November 2014
at The Portland Expo
239 Park Ave., Portland
Many local breweries on hand


Great Fall Brew Fest

June 2015
Presented by Baxter Brewing Co.
Simard-Payne Memorial Park in Lewiston, Maine
-30+ Breweries, 100+ Beers, Art & Music!

Bangors Tap Into Summer Brew Fest

June 2015
Bangor, ME
25+ Breweries and live music!

Local Breweries

Allagash Brewing Co.

50 Industrial Way
Portland, ME 04103
800-330-5385 /
Tours vary based on season. Please
check our website for details.
tHours: 10-5 Monday - Friday.

Andrews Brewing Co.

353 High Street

Lincolnville, ME 04849

Atlantic Brewing Co.

15 Knox Road
Bar Harbor, ME 04609
10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Free Tours and Tastings Everyday
2:00, 3:00 and 4:00 p.m.

Banded Horn Brewing Co.

32 Main Steet Building 13-W

Biddeford, Maine 04005

Bar Harbor Brewing Co.

8 Mount Desert Street

Bar Harbor, ME 04609

Baxter Brewing Co.

130 Mill Street

Lewiston, ME 04240
Hours: Monday-Wednesday: Closed
Thursday-Sunday: 12:00pm-6:00pm
Tours: Thursday-Sunday

Belfast Bay Brewing Co.

100 Searsport Ave
Belfast, ME 04915

Bigelow Brewing Co.

473 Bigelow Hill Rd
Skowhegan, ME 04976

Bissell Bros.

1 Industrial Way, Suite 3

Portland, Maine 04103
Hours: Saturdays 1PM-6PM

Black Bear Brewery

19 Mill St., Suite 4

Orono, ME 04473
Hours: Open weekly: Wed 4-8, Thurs
4-8, Friday 4-8, and Sat. 2-8

Boothbay Craft Brewery

301 Adams Pond Road
Boothbay , Maine 04537
(207) 633-3411
Hours: Fri: 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Brays Brew Pub

678 Roosevelt Trail

Naples, Maine 04055
Hours: Every Day 11:30 am - Close

Bunker Brewing Co.

Geaghan Bros. Brewing Co.

Captain Dicks Brewing Co.

Gneiss Brewing Co.

122 Anderson Street

Portland, ME 04101
(207) 450-5014
Hours: Saturdays 12pm - 3pm.
73 Mile Road
Wells, Maine 04090
(207) 646-0228
Hours: Mon - Sun: 3:00 pm - 11:00 pm

D.L. Geary Brewing Co.

38 Evergreen Drive
Portland, ME 04103
Hours: Generally, tours are scheduled
Monday through Friday between 2
and 2:30 p.m. Tours by appointment
call (207) 878-2337 before Monday.

Federal Jacks Brew Pub

8 Western Ave
Kennebunk, Maine 04043
(207) 967-4322
Hours: Mon - Sat: 11:30 am - 12:30 am
Sun: 10:00 am - 12:30 am

570 Main Street

Bangor, Maine 04401
Hours: Sunday - Thursday 7 am - 11
pm, Friday & Saturday 7 am-12:45 am
94 Patterson Road
Limerick, Maine 04048
(207) 793-0046
Hours: Friday 2-7pm
Saturday Noon - 6pm

Gritty McDuffs

396 Fore Street

Portland, ME 04101
(207) 772-2739
Lower Main St.
Freeport, ME 04032
68 Main Street
Auburn, ME 04210
Hours: 7 days a week. 11am- closing.

Foundation Brewing Co.

InFinite Fermentation &


Funky Bow Brewery & Beer Co.

The Inn on Peaks Island

1 Industrial Way, Suite 5

Portland, Maine

Ledgewood Lane
Lyman, ME 04002

250 Commercial Street

Portland, Maine 04101
(207) 221-8889
Hours: Mon - Sun: 11:30 am - 1:00 am
33 Island Avenue
Peaks Island, Maine 04108
Hours: Current Dining Room Hours:
Monday-Wednesday CLOSED

Local Breweries


Kennebec River Pub &

Old Canada Road
National Scenic Byway
1771 US Route 201
The Forks, Maine 04985
(800) 765-7238

The Liberal Cup Public

House & Brewery

115 Water St
Hallowell, Maine 04347
(207) 623-2739
Hours: Sunday- Thursday 11:30am 9:00pm, Friday and Saturday 11:30am
- 10:00pm, Pub closes at 1:00am

Maine Beer Co.

525 US Route One

Freeport, ME 04032
(207) 221-5711
Hours: Tasting room: Noon- 8pm
Tuesday- Saturday.

Marshall Wharf Brewing Co.

2 Pinchey Lane
Belfast, Maine 04915
(207) 338-1707
Hours: Please call for brewery/tasting
room hours.

Monhegan Brewing Co.

1 Boody Lane
Monhegan, Maine 04852

(207) 975-3958
Hours: Open daily April through
October. Please call for hours.

Oak Pond Brewing Co.

Oak Pond Rd
Skowhegan, Maine 04976
(207) 474-3233
Hours: Mon - Fri 3:00 to 5:30 PM,
Saturday 12:30 to 5:30 PM.

Oxbow Brewing Co.

274 Jones Woods Road

Newcastle, Maine 04553
(207) 315-5962
Hours:Our tasting room is in the
building adjacent to the brewery and
open: Wednesday 2-7pm
Thursday 2-7pm, Friday 2-7pm
Saturday Noon-5pm

Peak Organic

110 Marginal Way #802

Portland, Maine 04101

Pennesseewassee Brewing Co.

458 Plains Road
Harrison, Maine 04040
Hours: By appointment only

Penobscot Bay Brewery

2 Whig Street
Winterport, Maine 04496
Hours: January - February: Closed
March - April: Fri - Sat, 11am to 5pm

May - December: Tue - Sat, 11am to

5pm. Closed on all major holidays.

Rising Tide Brewing Co.

103 Fox Street

Portland, ME 04101
207-370-BEER (2337)
Spring Hours:
Tuesdays 4-7, Thursdays 4-7
Fridays 12-5, Saturdays 12-5
(Tours Friday & Saturday at 1 & 2 pm)

Rock Harbor Brewing Co.

416 Maine Street

Rockland , Maine 04841
Hours: Mon - Tue: 12:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Wed: 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Thu - Sat: 12:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Sun: 12:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Rocky Coast Brewing Co.

705 Main Street

Ogunquit, Maine 03907
Spring Hours: Closed on Mondays
Open Tues thru Sun 3pm till Close

Run of the Mill Public

House & Brewery

100 Main St
Saco, Maine 04072
Sunday - Thursday 11:30 - 9:00 pm
Friday - Saturday 11:30 - 10:00 pm
Bar: Monday-Sunday 11:30 - *1:00 am

Sea Dog Brewing Co.
1 Bowdoin Mill Island
Topsham, Maine 04086
Hours: Mon - Sat: 11:00 am - 1:00 am
Sun: 10:00 am - 1:00 am
26 Front Street
Bangor, ME 04401
PH: 207-947-8009
Hours: 11:30 am- 1am, 7 Days a Week
125 Western Ave,
South Portland, ME 04106
PH: 207-871-7000
Hours: Mon - Fri 11:00am - 1am
Sat - Sun 9:00am - 1am

*Now in Orlando!


PH: 321-329-5306
Hours: Mon-Thurs 4pm- 1am
Fri-Sat 11:30am- 2am
Sunday 11:30am- 1am

*Now in Clearwater!
26200 US Highway 19 N.
Clearwater, FL 04086
Office: (727)466-4916

Sebago Brewing Co.

Gorham Brew Pub

48 Sanford Drive
Gorham, Maine 04038
Mon - Sun: 11:00 am - 1:00 am
Portland Brew Pub
211 Fore Street
Portland, ME 04101
(207) 775-2337
Hours: Mon - Sat: 11am - 1am
Sun: 11am - Midnight

Scarborough Brew Pub

201 Southborough Dr.
Scarborough, ME 04074
(207) 874-2337
Hours: Everyday: 11am - 1am
Kennebunk Brew Pub
65 Portland Br.
Kennebunk, ME 04043
(207) 985-9855
Hours: Sun - Tues: 11am - 10:00pm
Wed - Sat: 11am - 12am
Brewery & HQ
GORHAM, ME 04038
207-856-2537 x102
MON - FRI: 2pm
Please call ahead to let us know if you
will attend. GROWLER FILLS
WED - FRI: 3pm - 5pm

Sheepscot Valley Brewing Co.

74 Hollywood Boulevard
Whitefield, Maine 04353

Shipyard Brewing Co.

86 Newbury Street
Portland, ME 04101
Hours: Store hours Monday - Saturday 9 to 6
Sunday - 11 to 5. Virtual tours daily
11 to 5 Monday - Saturday, 11 to 4
Sunday, every hour on the hour.
Shipyard Brew Haus at Sugarloaf
The Sugarloaf Inn,
Carrabassett Valley, ME
Office: (207)237-2000
Shipyard Brew Haus at Sunday River
21 White Heat Lane, P.O. Box 168,
Newry, ME 04261
Office: (207)824-5138

SoMo Brewing Co.

1 York Street Unit 3

York, Maine 03909
Hours: Tasting Room Hours
Thursday: 5-8pm, Friday: 5-9pm
Saturday: 12-6pm, Sunday: 12-5pm

Photos by:
Tom Tash
Jason Ridley,
Kim & BJ McCallister

he Maine Brew Bus was

founded in September
2012 by Zach and Allison
Poole, who saw a surprising hole in the infrastructure surrounding Maines wonderful local
businesses. The company began by
offering tours on Saturday afternoons to a handful of breweries in
the Portland area.
Guests quickly saw that having a
designated driver to guide them to
both established and up-and-coming producers offered them an opportunity to learn much more about
the craft alcohol business than they
could learn on their own. Tours are
now led by expert guides in addition to a knowledgeable driver to
ensure the best possible experience
for participating guests as well as
for the businesses with which they
The first summer proved that
Maines original Brew Bus was a
very popular tour with locals and
visitors alike. Exciting tour routes
were added on weekdays, and newly

opened breweries embraced the

idea of having The Green Bus stop
by so that guests could taste and
tour at their facilities. By the time
the first anniversary of the company
rolled around, nearly 1,500 guests
had taken tours and The Maine
Brew Bus had become the #1 activity in Portland as rated by TripAdvisor users. The fleet now includes
two buses and additional staff.
The all-inclusive tours on bright
green school buses provide a behind-the-scenes look at Maines
craft breweries, distilleries, wineries,
and more. They offer daily scheduled and private tours in Greater
Portland and Southern Maine. They
also offer frequent specialty and
adventure tours, and feature a different brewery each month in their
Progressive Beer Dinner series.
In 2014, The Maine Brew Bus was
presented a TripAdvisor Certificate
of Excellence and also an Editors
Choice award by Down East Magazine as a 2014 Best of Maine
For more information and to see
a current schedule of tours and
events, please visit