Maine Beer Company, Freeport, ME

We visited Maine Beer Company for the first time this summer. We were camping in the area and just had to stop in. It was a rainy day and pretty crowded, they do have tents set up out front for additional space and seating.

 

 

Maine Beer Company opened in 2009 in the legendary IndustriALE Way across the street from Allagash. They moved and expanded to Freeport in 2013. They are again working on expanding and are part way through a  2 part expansion.

 

Addition added to the back of the current
building where the brewing is taking place.

 

Additional construction happening. They are expanding the tasting room, and they are also upgrading their system from
a 15 barrel system to a 60 barrel system, with additional 120 and 240 barrel fermentors. That will be a huge expansion.

 

 

We ordered a flight of 8 beers, 5oz each for $18.

 

Post Ride Snack – session ipa     4.9%
A flavorful beer for a session ipa, with a bit of a lingering bitterness on the finish.

 

Peeper – pale ale     5.5%
Light, grassy hop flavoring. A good, light pale ale. Mark got more ‘pine’ than the berry flavors described.

 

 

Woods and Waters – ipa     6.2%
A little bitter with a very mild hop fruitiness.

 

Lunch – ipa     7%
This beer seemed to get more bitter as Mark drank it, not much tropical fruit notes as described, some sweetness from the malts.

 

 

We enjoyed a pretzel for a snack as well

 

Thank You – ipa     7%
Smells fruitier and taste fruitier than the other ipa’s. A good, strong hop flavor, fruity and/or floral. This was a very tasty, hoppy and ‘fruity’ ipa.

 

Pilot 18 – pilot dipa     8%
Brewed in collaboration with Novare Res Beer Cafe. First thing Mark noticed was some ‘heat’ on the end, you could taste the alcohol. Malty, red, bitter, trying to be fruity but didn’t quite get there, only a pilot batch though.

 

 

Zoe – amber ale     7.2%
Better than the average amber. More flavorful, dark raisin notes – their term but we agree, on the nose and taste, and a tiny bit roasty.

 

Mean Old Tom – stout     6.5%
Smells super roasty. Nice chocolate flavor and not too bitter, smooth and creamy, we both agreed. Subtle vanilla flavor, we noticed that after reading the description.

 

All of their beers are bottle conditioned. That means they carbonate naturally in the bottle and are not ‘force carbonated’ like most beers. That is interesting, most beers that are bottle conditioned today are usually sours or heavy dark beers, you don’t see a lot of ipa’s being bottle conditioned.

 

 

“Do what’s right” is there motto. They have
lot’s of solar panels outside, see below.

 

 

 

They also donate 1% of all their gross annual sales to charity. They donate to a lot of different charities and operate as green of a business as possible.

 

 

Hours

Monday – Saturday: 11:00 – 8:00
Sunday: 11:00 – 5:00

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Four Pines Brewing Company, Hampton, NH

 

We visited Four Pines Brewing Company a little while back with our friends Bre and Deryl. We went for pizza and beers. We have had The Community Oven pizza before and it was good, so we went back.

 

 

Four Pines Brewing Company opened about a year ago. They are in the old space that was occupied by Blue Lobster, they took over the space and the equipment. They are owned by the Community Oven and located right next door. They are connected by a doorway and serve pizza in the brewery and beer in the pizza shop.

 

 

Mark ordered a flight of 4 beers to try. They didn’t have very much info about the beers in the menu, just the names of the beers. We would have loved to read a little bit about the beers before ordering.

 

 

Foggy Amber
Sweet and malty, typical amber ale. Mark said it was decent for an amber, Megan said eh. They sell this in 6 packs now.

Porter
A touch sweet, toasty, pretty decent, not a bitter porter. Megan said basic, but not bad.

 

 

Stout
Dry and a bit roasty, a touch bitter as well.

Blue Dragon – dipa
Mostly hazy but still see through. This was a very malty dipa, it might be kind of hoppy but all Mark noticed was the malt, not his style, malty and sweet.

Naughty Pine IPA
Hoppier than Blue Dragon to Mark. Piney and hop bitterness up front with a strong malt backbone, not great.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sweet Sausage Pizza

 

Small special pizza, The Oven’s Meat-Za Pizza.

 

The pizza was really good, all three were. We sat on The Community Oven side, but both sides serve pizza and Four Pines beer.

 

Bre and Deryl

 

It doesn’t seem like they put a whole lot of effort into supporting the brewery. They don’t really have a presence in the brewing community or go to any events, we actually never hear anything about the place. They also haven’t update the Community Oven website with the brewery information, as they still have Blue Lobster listed on their beer list, which closed around 2 years ago and they don’t have the Four Pines beer listed on their beer menu online.

Go for the pizza, and try the beer while you are there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Untold Brewing, Scituate, MA

Untold Brewing is a new brewery in Scituate, MA, they just opened in 2017. We visited here with Megan’s sister Sam and her boyfriend Dustin.

 

Their tasting room is pretty unique, it is a renovated schoolhouse that was built in 1862. They built a large metal building behind the schoolhouse that houses the brewery. The entrance is between the 2 buildings on the side of the building.

 

Old schoolhouse tasting area

 

They hired Rustic Marlin to build them tables for the schoolhouse seating area, so it looks old and fits in with the building. It was too crowded to get a good picture of the tables (without people being weirded out).

 

 

They are pretty large for a new brewery, they definitely have some money behind them. This is a pretty good sized brewing system to open with.

 

They serve 5 oz and 10 oz pours, or a flight of four 5 oz pours for $11.

 

 

Rebecca – brown ale     5.6%
This was pretty dark in color for a brown ale, coffee and a dark malty, toffee flavor. A little interesting and slightly different for a brown ale.

 

Pale 143 – pale ale     5.6%
Crystal clear, but still a tasty pale, ha. Hoppy with citrus and mango flavors, Mark liked this beer.

 

 

East By Northwest – ipa     6.8%
Fairly clear in appearance. Pine hops flavors dominate this beer, with some bitterness. Mark liked it more as he drank the sample. Mark liked the Pale better with citrus and mango flavors, East By Northwest was good but the strong pine flavors are not Mark’s favorite.

 

Time Shall Unfold – ipa     6.2%
This ipa is dominated by citrus hop flavors, but comes with a bit more bitterness. Pale was still Mark’s favorite overall.

 

 

Mr. Scratch – oatmeal stout      6.9%
Pretty good, chocolatey and smooth, no dark bitterness to it which was nice. Mark, Sam and Dustin all liked this, Megan liked the Rebecca Brown Ale better, which surprised her.

 

Melon Patch – ipa     6.2%
Sam and Dustin got this in their flight, hazy in appearance, hoppy and melony smooth.

 

 

Harvest Ale – amber ale     5.1%
Dustin said the harvest ale was just ok.

 

 

 

 

They give snacks out for free! They also have
beer  to go in growlers and crowlers, and have started
to do limited runs of 16 oz cans..

Mark liked the beers, lot’s of ipa’s, we’ll probably
stop in again when we are in the area.

Plenty of swag

 

Hours

Thursday – 3:00 – 8:00
Friday and Saturday – 12:00 – 10:00
Sunday – 12:00 – 7:00

Old Colony Brewing, Whitman, MA

Old Colony Brewing is a nano brewery in Whitman, MA. We have tried a few of their beers before we actually visited them. Sam and Dustin like going there, as it’s close to them.

 

We met Megan’s sister Sam and her friend Lindsey there one evening in November. They serve 5 oz pours and full pints. They also have growlers and crowlers to go, and they just started doing limited runs of 16 oz cans as well.

 

 

Boom Shak Azacca – IPA – 6.5%
Light and easy drinking, mildly hoppy, tropical notes up front with a slightly bitter finish, just like the description says.

 

Toll House Stout – 5.5%
A milk stout brewed with chocolate and chocolate malts. Good for a milk stout, more on the bitter chocolate side than a sweet milk chocolate flavor. With the Toll House name and billed as a ‘chocolate chip cookie stout’ we expected something sweeter and for it to somehow be more cookie like somehow.

 

Little sample trays and cards with beer info

 

Thanksgiving – 4.5%
A wheat beer made with apples and cranberries. Taste like a wheat style beer with a sweeter than typical cranberry flavor, probably from the addition of the apples, pretty good.

 

Money Line IPA – 6%
Super citrusy and fruity aroma. This was a tasty new england style ipa, hazy but not opaque, a little bit sweet but a good beer, Mark’s favorite overall.

 

Mark’s pint of Money Line

 

Pumpkin – 5.5%
An ale brewed with fresh pumpkin in the mash. Megan thought it had a good balance of flavors, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla all present but not overwhelming.

 

 

Mark went back a second time with Dustin in January and liked Money Line IPA again, and thought the Toll House Stout was pretty good.

 

 

The Dub – 7.8%
This beer was not great, thin and not very hoppy at all.

 

Snow Day – 5.9%
Interesting beer, a spiced porter. Better than Mark expected, cinnamon,  nutmeg and vanilla added some nice additional flavors to make this and interesting porter. Sam and Dustin have mentioned this beer a few times to us as well.

 

They have a short bar and a handful of tables, with plenty of extra standing room when crowded.

 

 

 

Current Hours

Thursday and Friday: 6:00 – 10:00
Saturday and Sunday: 12:00 – 5:00

Barrel House Z, Weymouth, MA

We visited Barrel House Z a little while back, for our 150th visit! We went with all of Megan’s sisters as well two significant others. We have actually been back again since our first visit.

 

They are located in an industrial park In Weymouth, MA not too far from Megan’s family. They use old barrels for decoration everywhere, outside, leading into the tap room, and all over the walls. They have a decent size patio area, but since our visit was in the winter time, we stayed indoors.

 

Barrel House Z is a fairly new brewery that focuses on small batch, and mostly barrel aged beers. The brewery is run by the original head brewer of Harpoon. They have a partnership with Harpoon that we’ll get into a little more later.

 

 

They have 5 oz, 10 oz, and 16 oz pours of most of their beers. Some of the higher ABV beers are not available for 16 oz pours. A few of the beers they had two options- either barrel aged or ITB, ‘in the buff’ (not barrel aged). Others were just one or the other.  We tried a variety of pours of most of the stuff available, all barrel aged versions when available.

 

Bamboozled By Hops – IPA     6%
Not much aroma, light in body and not very hoppy with and odd, bitter finish. Grassy and bitter, not great, not barrel aged.

 

 

Townie – Irish Ale     8.4%
Aged 1 month in Bully Boy Whiskey Barrels
Smells like whiskey, pretty boozy in flavor but that flavor is complimented well by the base beer. This was a good beer, a pretty perfect blending of flavors, better than Mark expected it to be, and he took some home.

 

Zelato – coffee stout     8.8%
Aged 10 months in Rum Barrel
Kind of thin for a barrel aged stout. It had a good amount of rum flavor that blended well with the coffee flavor. Mark thought the coffee was strong on the nose but subtle in the flavoring at first, the rum dominated at first but you tasted more coffee as you drank it.

 

 

Quaker State – american oatmeal stout     10%
Aged 10 months in Double Oak Bourbon Barrels
This seemed a little thin as well, boozy with a lot of bourbon and oak flavors.

 

Dustin enjoying his beers

 

Adeline – stout     8.8%
Aged 1 month in American Whiskey Barrels
A good stout with the right about of barrel aging character, this was everyone’s favorite stout, and Mark’s, he bought some of this as well.

 

 

Sunny & 79 – ginned pilsner     6.2%
Aged in Tequila Barrels
The tequila flavor dominates this beer, but in a good way, not overwhelming.

 

 

Jess got the Sunny Radler, the Sunny & 79 pilsner mixed with Spindrift sparkling lemon seltzer. Jess just thought it was ok, she’s not much of a beer drinker and didn’t want anything else. Mark thought it was decent for what it was, a Radler.

 

 

Macanadas – mac and cheese filled empanadas

 

Mark was curious about the brewery set up and just had to ask. They have a very small 2 barrel system to brew most of their beer on. They have some 5 barrel fermenters so they can double batch into those. They also have some 20 barrel fermenters that they use. Harpoon will brew up a batch of beer for them and ship it over so Barrel House Z can ferment it. That’s how they achieve some of the volume so they can distribute while still being able to make fun, small batch, one off beers.

 

Visit #150!

 

 

They have a pretty good sized tap room. A couple picnic tables on 1 side, a big long bar in the middle with several more big tables on the other side.

 

 

Hours

Wednesday – Friday 4:00 – 10:00
Saturday – 12:00 – 10:00
Sunday – 12:00 – 5:00

 

 

 

Big Elm Brewing, Sheffield, MA

We visited Big Elm Brewing in Sheffield, MA, while we were on vacation out in the Berkshires. They have been brewing beer as Big Elm Brewing since 2012. The owners are a husband wife team who have plenty of experience brewing. They actually owned and operated a brewpub in the area, but left the business of running a restaurant to focus on just brewing.
They have a small bar, but a pretty big tasting room, basically 2 adjoining rooms.
Cool lamps above the bar that they made from malt bags.
They sell flights as well as 8 oz pours and 16 oz pours. We
got 2 flights of 4 so we could try most of the beers.
American Lager      5%
Clean, crisp and on point for the style, but a little too boring for us.
Luna      6%
Pretty good for a blonde, apricot notes maybe, it had a little something extra that was nice.
413 Farmhouse Ale      6%
Had a slightly fruity/funky aroma. Megan liked this beer, easy drinking with a pleasant farmhouse funk to it.
Lion’s Ale      5.3%
Darker in color, we were not sure quite what it was, the style was not written on board, it was not hoppy. Megan was not really a fan. We found out from their website it was an amber ale.
Zorro – Golden Sour      6%
Not very sour. Had a golden-mildly tart flavor upfront with a dry finish, but not in a salty gose way.
Thunderlips – New England Pale Ale     6%
Fruity hoppy smell, but that does not come through on the flavor. Kind of bland flavor in the middle with a hoppy bitterness at the end.
Big Elm IPA      7%
Mark- super different hops. Spicy and clove. Unusual flavors for an ipa. Megan said it was creamy, which was different for an IPA
Gerry Dog Stout      6.5%
This was the best beer we thought. Mildly chocolate flavor, really smooth, no bitterness.
 We peeked out back, they have pretty decent sized tanks. They also do all their own canning. They sell their beer to go in cans, on a limited rotation it seems, and also do growler fills.
 Hours
Thursday, Friday, Saturday: 12:00 – 6:00

Pipe Dream Brewing Company, Londonderry, NH

We visited Pipe Dream Brewing with our friends Ian and Stephanie. Pipe Dream Brewing is in Londonderry, NH and opened in June 2016. They are veteran owned and inspired by the west coast. A lot of their beer labels and imagery relates back to the ocean, the beach, surfing, etc.

 

They have a decent sized tasting room. We were there in early fall, they had a pretty big outdoor area with tables where we sat.

 

 

They sell 4 oz, 12oz, and 16 oz pours of their beer. Flights come in a set of 5.

 

 

West to East IPA     6.8%
Hoppy, hazy with a mild bitterness and a sweet finish. This was a good ipa, Mark and Ian both agreed.

 

 

Coffee Stout     8.5%
A good coffee stout, dark with hints of coffee, did not have that bitter coffee flavor though. Stephanie thought it was a little sweet. Megan and Ian thought it was a little thin, light in body but still pretty good.

 

Single Hop Columbus     6.8%
An earthy and bitter ipa. Mark did not like this that much, maybe just not a fan of Columbus hops on their own. We like to see them experimenting though.

 

 

Ian tried the Double IPA and liked it.

 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Stout     11.1%
This was on nitro. Smells like a pb cup. Taste like peanut butter chocolate, sweet and not bitter, a very good beer. This was on nitro, probably added to the beer, the smoothness and mouthfeel of nitro.

 

Sour Brown
A dark sour beer, obviously. Sour and a little bit sweet from the malts. Pretty good sour brown.

 

 

They are technically a brewpub because they serve food. They have a variety of sandwiches, hot and cold, pizzas, nachos and a few other options. We did not eat while there, just stopped in for a quick sample of beers. We had never been here but Ian and Stephanie had visited shortly after they opened. Ian thought the beer had improved over the last year. We liked that they could do a variety of beers well.

 

Swag room

 

 

Hours

Wednesday and Thursday: 12:00 – 8:00
Friday and Saturday: 12:00 – 10:00
Sunday: 12:00 – 5:00