Because of the beer nerd that I am, I always seem to think I’m ahead of the trends and am always stumbling upon the next big thing. When heading to Mast Landing Brewing Co in Westbrook, ME, I thought I was uncovering Maine’s next big secret. Boy, was I wrong. Right after the doors opened, the place was full. Guess the secret’s out.
The brewery itself is a fun hang out spot with tables and stand up tables. The second you walk through the door, all you smell is hops everywhere (I know, hard to imagine for a brewery). Some people love the smell of flowers, some like the smell of rain; but me, hops are my favorite smells. I was in heaven.
Then there’s the beers. Gunner’s Daughter has to be one of the best dark beers that I’ve had. The Peanut Butter Milk Stout has all the makings of a damn good dessert. The stout was very light and had a subtle peanut butter bite. The Seavey Island was a pale ale with a crisp mango taste with a smooth finish.
On the IPA side, Mast Landing hit the flavors just right. DDH Tell Tale bursts with hints of tropical fruits like papaya perfected with Mosaic, Citra, and Simcoe hops. One of my favorite hop combinations out there. The best beer had to be Dash, though. It was one of the best juice bombs that I’ve ever had. Equal balances of citrus and floral hops made this beer one that I’m still dreaming of.
I’m already planning my next visit to Mast Landing as I’m obsessed. It makes for the perfect beer trip with the Industrial Way breweries (Allagash, Battery Steele, Austin St., and Foundation) minutes away.
Mast Landing Brewing Co
920 Main St.
Located in the back of an industrial park, hides one of Portland’s hidden treasures, Bunker Brewing Co. The second I pulled up to the brewery, I was in love. The brewery is very open with picnic tables outside, a food truck, and more tables inside.
Inside, the brewery has a rustic feel and Bob Marley vinyls playing away. There’s also a section on the side where you can play cornhole and ping pong.
The best beer had to be Salad Daze. As the name suggests, it’s a session lager packed with citrus as it’s hopped with Citra. The perfect beer to quench your thirst on a hot summer day. Machine was the perfect example of a Czech Lager with traditional spicey, earthy notes. Cypher, the Hoppy Lager, had a very interesting taste with a different piney taste. Finally, the Rockerz IPA had everything that I love in a beer (hops, grapefruit and Mosaic hops). It’s a darker IPA but still very drinkable.
Props to my new bartender friend for drinking her beers from a dino sippy cup. You and your dog are the real MVP. Everyone there is beyond nice and the kind of people you want to hang out at the bar and talk to.
Just a couple minutes from Bissell Brothers, this may become our new second stop every time we visit. One thing they have on Bissell is they allow dogs, which Bissell just stopped. I still need to get my dog petting fix. Yes, I’m a dog creeper.
Bunker Brewing Co.
17 Westfield St Unit D
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 12p.m.-9p.m.
Just outside the busy Old Port, Rising Tide Brewing is like a parking lot party in the summer. There are live bands playing, corn hole, dogs everywhere, a food truck, and of course, beer. By the crowds of people, you could tell that this was the place to be.
Soundings, which is their experimental IPA series, featured the Ales for ALS this visit and it was amazing! Packed with strawberry, coconut, and papaya flavor, this was an IPA combination that was new to me. Not only was the flavor out of this world, but also benefited ALS research. Helping the world like a beer drinking super hero. Printemps, the American Warehouse Ale, was also a favorite of mine as it was a saison packed with citrus and green tea. That makes it healthy, right? Two of Rising Tide’s staple beers, Zephyr and Daymark rounded out a perfect flight. Zephyr was an IPA with apple and pear flavoring which hinted more on a heavier IPA. Daymark, finally, was more on the floral side. Floral Pale Ales aren’t normally my thing but this one was pretty good and light.
The vibe of the brewery is very chill and is a great place to spend the afternoon with friends. Whether it’s just to grab a beer before heading to the Old Port or spend the day listening to the bands and playing games. I can’t wait to visit again on a less busy day to take a tour of the brewery and get to know a little more about the beer and brewery but what I saw so far was enough to bring me back.
Rising Tide Brewing
103 Fox St
Tucked in the back of a parking lot on Rt. 1 in York, ME, sits a small brewery with a lot of character and a lot of flavor. SoMe Brewery is a Rt 1 hidden gem. Blink and you may miss it.
This small taproom feels like a great community of people meeting up to grab beers or hanging out at the tables outside. Some nights there’s music and some nights there’s comedy. There’s always something going on at SoMe. If not, there’s always the fooseball table or test out your artistic skills on the giant chalkboard.
The first beer that caught my eye was the Whoopie Pie Stout. I’m not much of a stout person, but i definitely am a Whoopie Pie person. This stout was very light with a slight crisp bite to it. The chocolate, cream notes mixed perfectly for this smooth “dessert-like” beer. I had previously had the Apostrophe IPA and have to say, this is my favorite beer from SoMe. The mosaic hops give it a citrusy, bitter taste which makes for a nice refreshing, hazy brew. The Mainely Pale Ale is a true Maine beer as it all locally sourced ingredients giving it an earthy taste. The El Dorado, as the name suggests, is hopped with El Dorardo, which isn’t my favorite type of hop but this beer was pretty good. To me, El Dorado hops are a more bitter and deeper tasting hop rather than a light, citrus type that I enjoy. Finally the Crystal Persuasion was the DIPA. This DIPA tastes of a spice and pine and a malty undertone.
This a great place to stop and grab a beer or two on your way up to Portland or down to Portsmouth. If you’re not looking to go far, grab a flight on your way back from a long day battling the tourists at the beaches. Because we all know we need a couple after dealing with them, nevermind their driving abilities. The staff is always so nice and it feels more like a community than anything.
1 York St, Unit 3
Open daily at 12
Maine Beer Co. is the epitome of environmental breweries. From the large solar panels covering the roof and the donations to programs benefiting the Earth. They also pick a new foundation every month to donate to. They currently have a beer, King Titus, which proceeds are donated to the Gorilla Fund. This little farmhouse type brewery is great to hang outside in warmer weather but the inside has a great window into the brew house.
Aside from the environmental perks, their beer stays true to the environment. One of my favorite IPAs is their Lunch. Yes, it does get confusing when you tell people how much you love Lunch. This IPA has a dry, pine taste. Definitely a well-rounded beer full of flavor. If you want to kick it up a notch, there’s the insanely sought after Dinner. Dinner, is the DIPA of Lunch. Good luck getting your hands on this outside of on tap at the brewery. When this beer is for sale, you have to get tickets. Either way, Lunch and Dinner is a perfect liquid diet, just missing breakfast.
Aside from Lunch, Woods and Water was amazing. This IPA has the perfect balance of pine and citrus. With a light, crisp taste, this beer gives Lunch a run for its money in my opinion. Finally, Peeper, another Piney IPA, but with a berry taste. This smooth beer is a great compliment to the citrus IPAs.
No matter what you get at Maine Beer Co., you can’t go wrong. Amazing beer from a great brewery that prides itself on doing what’s right for the world. Drinking great beer and helping the world, now that’s the American dream.
Maine Beer Co.
525 U.S. Rt 1
Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.- 8 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m.