Allagash Bottle Releases

Allagash is holding a double bottle release on Saturday:

  • Coolship la Vigne, a spontaneously fermented beer made with with freshly pressed St. Croix and Sabrevois grapes from Maine Coast Vineyards in Falmouth, Maine. Allagash describes the beer as ” tart and funky with rounded notes of wine and apricot. The finish is both crisp and dry”.
  • Saison Gratis, “a tart and fruit-forward beer that’s hopped in our coolship and then open fermented”.

There’s a single bottle limit for the La Vigne and a 2 bottle limit for the Saison Gratis. Doors open at 10:30.

3 Brewery Expansion for Freeport

Three new breweries on Route 1 near Maine Beer Company are in various stages of development.

Brad Nadeau who started developing Stars and Stripes Brewing Co. (website, facebook, instagram) late last year has leased space in Freeport at 8 Varney Road where he plans to open a 2,000 sq ft brewery later this Fall. For more info check out this article in The Forecaster.

Mast Landing (website, facebook, instagram, twitter) is working on a project to build a 6,000 sq ft brewery at 475-491 US Route 1. The new space will include a 2,000 sq ft deck. You may remember, Mast Landing’s owners originally planned to open in Freeport before finding their current building in Westbrook, so this is a homecoming of sorts for the brewery.

A third brewery is being considered for a 15,300 sq ft lot at 392 US Route 1. Details are scarce at this point, but plans do call for a 2-story brewery to built on the site.

Stars and Stripes, Mast Landing and the proposed 3rd brewery will all be located near Maine Beer Company, potentially creating a new beer destination in the Portland area.

Allagash Brewing

Down East tells the story of Allagash Brewing and Rob Tod. The article is an assemblage of interviews with Tod, former and current employees, customers and leaders in the industry.

Top-secret ingredients and MacGyvered dairy equipment. Old world wisdom and cutting-edge tech. Hollywood celebrity and cult cachet. It’s all part of the long, heady history of the curious beer that put Maine suds on the map.

BA Best New Breweries: Battery Steele

Beer Advocate has named Battery Steele to their list of the 50 Best New Breweries of the past year.

On Portland, Maine’s Industrial Way, the avenue that birthed titans like Maine Beer Co. and Bissell Brothers, 2017 saw the beginnings of Battery Steele Brewing. The industrial setting, with shining tanks directly in front of consumers, harkens back to the craft breweries in years past. Co-founder Jacob Condon says Battery Steele is a product of exploration and “pushing the limits of ourselves and the beers we produce.” The well-received Flume is an 8 percent Double IPA brewed with English malts and Citra and Mosaic hops. Battery Steele also brews an IPA as part of its OnSight Experimental Series. In 2018, Condon says, the brewery will expand its physical space and “add some variety” to the hop-heavy lineup, which already includes Knox Bière de Garde and Telos Stout.

Under Construction: Shipyard Brewtel

The Press Herald reports that Shipyard is planning to completely renovate its facility on Hancock Street, retaining the brewery and tasting room but replacing the rest of the building. The new structures will include a 105-room brewery/hotel aka ‘brewtel’.

According to planning documents given to the city last month, the existing brick brewery building and tasting room would be renovated. But the rest of the buildings on the 2-acre site – including the bottling plant – would be demolished to make way for the 105-room hotel, a three-story residential building with nine units at Hancock and Newbury streets, a large office building and a four-story garage for 360 vehicles.

LD 1889

Carla Jean Lauter has written an article about LD 1889, the law that enabled breweries to charge for samples, for the Press Herald.

Here in Maine, there’s another milestone that probably deserves to be recognized: the passage of LD 1889 in the Maine House and Senate. Signed and enacted in mid-April of 2012, LD 1889 laid the groundwork to fundamentally change the entire beer industry in Maine by allowing Maine brewers to charge for samples at their own breweries. While this seems trivial, its passage had cascading effects that have allowed the beer industry to become what it is today.

Definitive Brewing Co.

The Press Herald checked in with Definitive Brewing on the upcoming launch of their Industrial Way brewery and how they hope to succeed in an increasingly competitive market.

[Michael] Rankin, the CEO of Definitive, rounded up a group of 11 investors and bought a building on Industrial Way, across the street from Allagash and next door to Foundation, Austin Street and Battery Steele breweries. Definitive hired Dylan Webber – a former top brewer at Maine Beer Co. and Mast Landing – to be the director of brewing operations. And Definitive is diving into the market with a 15-barrel brewhouse and four 40-barrel fermenters, which is enough to make more than 1,000 gallons a week.

Definitive Brewing is slated to open around Memorial Day.

Maine Beer Co. Hires a CEO

Maine Beer Company has hired Steve Mills to be the CEO for the Freeport-based brewery, reports Brewbound.

“I’m thrilled to be joining Maine Beer Company,” Mills wrote to Brewbound. “I’ve known David and Dan since almost the beginning. They had such awesome vision for what they wanted Maine Beer to be: people focused, exceptional quality and supporting 1 percent For The Planet. And look at what they’ve built! It’s all about doing what’s right. I’m looking forward to contributing wherever I can.”

Mills is moving to Maine from Utah where he was the CEO of Uinta Brewing.

Sebago’s New Brewery Opens Today

The Press Herald has published an article about Sebago’s new brewery and tasting room in Gorham. The new brewery is located on Route 25. It is slated to open to the public today.

For starters, it’s just bigger. The largest fermentation vessel at its previous location – about a mile away – made 1,240 gallons of beer at a time. Now it has two fermenters that make nearly 5,000 gallons at a time – and capacity to add two more just like them.