Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Portland, ME is my favorite craft beer city in the world.  A short two hour drive from Boston, with a pit stop halfway, in Portsmouth, NH, and you are there.  The largest city in Maine is well-known for its high quality food and beer, boasting more than TEN production breweries with a lowly 66,000 population in the city and 243,000 in the metropolitan region. Not only are there a number of breweries, but there is a great brewpub scene and several homebrew shops.  There are 2 world-class bars as well as many others offering great craft beer, and excellent distribution means that Portland's liquor stores stock beer from all over the country and world.


Allagash: My favorite brewery in town.  Allagash makes a number of great beers, all in the Belgian style, and they are distributed throughout the country.  The tour here is excellent and the gift shop has plenty of nice swag and cold beer.  50 Industrial Way, Portland, ME 04103

Maine Brewing Co.: Located right across the street from Allagash, although in much smaller digs, this brewery is an up and comer for sure.  They only make 3 beers year round: Peeper, Zoe, and Lunch, all of which are hoppy and delicious.  Sold in 500ml bottles, which I actually prefer to the standard 22oz bombers.  Tours are on Friday afternoon.  1 Industrial Way, Unit 3, Portland, ME 04103

Shipyard: Shipyard is one of the larger New England Breweries, and I consider it a competitor to Long Trail, Harpoon, and Magic Hat.  They offer a number of fruit inspired beers that are popular with novice craft brew enthusiasts, but leave something to be desired by the true afficionados.  85 Newbury St, Portland, ME 04101

Sebago:  Sebago operates several Brewpubs in Maine, and although many will disagree, they are my favorite. There production brewery is located outside of the city, tours offered Monday-Friday at 2pm, give them a call at 207-856-ALES(2537).  48 Sanford Drive, Gorham, ME 04038

Rising Tide: One of Maine's newest and smallest breweries, offering more malty flavors than their neighbors at Maine Brewing Co.  1 Industrial Way, Suite #2, Portland, ME 04103

Peak Organic: An all organic brewery, with pretty good distribution.  The founder is a graduate of Harvard University, who decided to pursue his passion in beer.  They offer some great small batch beers in addition to their regular contract brews.  110 Marginal Way #802 Portland, ME 04101

D.L. Geary's: Not one of my favorite breweries, but I enjoyed Geary's Summer and Pale Ale while in Old Orchard Beach. 38 Evergreen Dr., Portland, ME 04103 (close to Allagash/Rising Tide/Maine Brewing)

Bar Harbor:  Located in Bar Harbor, to the distant north of Portland, is an excellent brewery, my favorite is the Cadillac Mountain Stout!  8 Mountain Desert Street, Bar Harbor, ME 04609

Baxter: An excellent can only brewery, which has just recently started distributing in Boston, and plans to distribute to all of MA by the end of 2012.  Their flagship beers Pamola Xtra Pale and Stowaway IPA are both great, sold in cans all around Maine for $8.99/sixer.  A third regular beer is on the horizon.  130 Mill St., Lewiston, ME 04240


Gritty McDuff's: The best way to sum it up, my 50 year old mother thinks its a "Cool place"  beers are OK, food is OK, but certainly not bad.  Locations in Freeport and Lewiston as well.  896 Fore St., Portland, ME 04101

Sebago: Scarborough, Gorham, Kennebunk, and Portland.  Check the Portland location in the Old Port 211 Fore St, Portland, ME 04101


Ebenezer's Pub: This world-class pub is possibly the best Belgian beer bar in America.  They are purveyors of Black Albert, and keep 35 Belgian brews on tap, as well as an EXTENSIVE bottle list.  This is certainly a must-stop for any die hard.  1.25 hour drive from Portland. 44 Allen Rd., Lovell, ME 04051

Novare Res: This excellent spot is located in downtown Portland.  The best bar in Portland proper for my money.  They have a solid tap selection and a ton of bottles including the ever-hard-to-acquire Cantillon. 4 Canal Plaza, Portland, ME 04101

Great Lost Bear: This is a little more divey and on the outskirts of town, but it is a great bar nonetheless.  A perfect stop after touring the facilities of Allagash, in my humble opinion, not far from my favorite bottle shop in Portland: RSVP.  540 Forest Ave, Portland, ME 04101

Madden Beverage: 335 North St., Saco, ME 04072
Maine Brewing Supply: 542 Forest Ave, Portland, ME 04101 (next to the Great Lost Bear)
The Hop Shop: 59 Portland Rd, Gray, ME 04039

Another great resource to check out is BeerAdvocate's BeerFly Guide for Portland, ME.  This is the spot for reviews and additional info.  Thanks for checking us out.  Email me if you have any questions: or @kmoneythedon on Twitter.