Ramble On

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

New Hampshire and Maine Breweries Tour - Part 2

In the tap room - beers on tap and the bar.
After our A-B tour, and a stop to visit friends in New Hampshire, we began making our way up to Acadia National Park, which was the ultimate destination for our vacation trip.  As I mentioned yesterday, Mary had agreed to indulge me on a few visits to breweries on the way, so I had set my sights on Maine Beer Company, in Freeport, Maine, as one of the stops.

When I first began homebrewing a few years ago, Maine Beer and Boulevard were among the earliest craft breweries my fellow enthusiasts introduced to me.  The emphasis on "craft" was most apparent with Maine Beer, embodied in one of the quotes on their web site:

No tours are offered, but the production brewery
is visible from the tap room.

"We told ourselves if we couldn't do things right then we wouldn't do them at all."

Boulevard, which I toured (link here) in Kansas City in December 2014, similarly demonstrates what you can do if you stay committed to your values and aspirations.

As a result, the experience at Maine Beer brewery emphasizes a number of sustainable features to the design of the building and production area - solar arrays for power, and interpretive signage to introduce and educate visitors about other green features in use.  For a consulting professional who works on real estate and facilities, like myself, these are all great features to see in practice.

This commitment and messaging continues with the beer.  There is a solid history on their web site about experimenting with hops - see this link; also here is a quote from that page that presents a  mission that any craft brewer could adopt:
Here's the flight I chose at Maine Beer
Company - four 5 oz. tulips.

"The Hop Program developed as a way to experiment with new hops and new hop combinations, and also incorporate different styles of beer.  It is important for us to keep learning and growing as a brewery, and the Hop Program allows us to do that.  Never standing still, and always moving forward are some of the goals we aim to accomplish through this series."

We can get Maine Beer in Virginia, and my local in Bethesda also offers the pint bottles.  Peeper, Lunch, and Mean Old Tom are some of the varieties I've sampled.  For my flight, I chose Peeper, Pilot 10, a tiny beautiful something, and Beer IV -  a couple of pale ales, a hoppy lager, and an IPA (Beer IV) from the Hop Program.

The beers were good, just as expected.  The crowd in the tap room was steady, but leaned a bit more on the hipster side than I might have liked, but I can't complain.  

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