Maine Brewers’ Guild Announces 2015 Beer Festival: Summer Session

DownEast_SummerSession_April2015

Portland, MAINE – If spending an afternoon on Portland’s waterfront sampling beers from breweries near and far sounds good to you – don’t miss Summer Session. The Maine Brewers’ Guild is returning to Thompson’s Point waterfront venue for its annual beer festival, slated for Saturday July 25th, 2015 and tickets for the event go on sale today.

Building on the success of last year’s Beer Camp festival, the Maine Brewers’ Guild will be using their industry knowledge to create a beer festival that ensures a great experience for all attendees.

“We’ve been thinking a lot about how to create the best beer festival, and we’ve made a lot of decisions with the attendees in mind.” explained Sean Sullivan, Executive Director of the Maine Brewers’ Guild, the nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote and protect Maine’s craft beer industry. “Too many festivals these days involve overcrowded venues with long lines and little opportunity to engage with the people behind the beer. Our festival will be the opposite.”

Summer Session is the only beer festival in the state that is hosted by local brewers to support local brewers. Unlike other festivals, 100% of the Summer Session’s proceeds go to promote and develop the craft beer industry in Maine. Brewers will be pouring their own beer and will enjoy the opportunity to engage with the attendees.

“We are really focused on the details to ensure the event is a hit – from having live music that is close enough to enjoy while sampling, but not so close that you have to spend the entire event yelling to doubling the number of bathrooms on-site and eliminating tickets for pours while including a good number of food trucks. All around, we are trying to create an environment that’s comfortable and fun for all adults.”

But, if sampling beers and hanging out in the sun isn’t enough for you, the Brewers’ Guild will also be welcoming attendees to check out their ‘Beer School’ tent within the festival. Featuring short presentations and Q&A time with Maine’s brewers. “There will be no extra charge to attend the Beer School classes at the festival.” Rather, the Guild, “wanted to give beer geeks and newcomers a chance to learn more about beer from our knowledgeable brewers,” explained Sullivan.

The Maine craft beer industry is growing tremendously, and the festival is an opportunity to showcase the innovation and world-class beer being brewed in Maine. The Guild also sees this as a chance to highlight some of the latest developments in Maine’s craft beer industry by highlighting their agricultural roots.

For the first time, nearly 20 breweries will compete for the “Home Grown Trophy,” an award given to the brewer who brews the best beer using Maine-grown, Maine-malted grains. Sponsored by Maine Malt House, which recently opened a malting facility in Mapleton, the Guild will award this trophy based on attendees’ votes for their favorite ‘Home Grown’ beer. “This is the perfect venue to showcase how Maine’s craft beer industry is establishing strong connections with our agricultural industry and creating new opportunities for family farms across the state,” noted Sullivan.

Last but not least, to help spread the word and share the love, the Maine Brewers’ Guild is using an invitational format for this year’s event. Each local brewery is being encouraged to invite one out-of-state guest – potentially doubling the universe of brewers that will be on-hand. Over thirty breweries have already registered and over 50 breweries are expected to attend.

HOST BREWERIES:

Allagash Brewing Company

Andrew’s Brewing Co.

Atlantic Brewing

Austin Street Brewery

Banded Horn Brewing Co.

Baxter Brewing Co.

Bigelow Brewing Company

Bissell Brothers Brewing Co.

Black Bear Brewery

Boothbay Craft Brewery

Bunker Brewing Co.

Cambridge Brewing Company

Foundation Brewing Company

Funky Bow Brewery

Geaghan Bros. Brewing Co.

Geary Brewing Company

Gneiss Brewing Company

Gritty McDuff’s

Hidden Cove Brewing Co.

Kennebunkport Brewing Co/Federal Jack’s

Liberty Craft Brewing

Liquid Riot Bottling Company

Lively Brewing Company

Maine Beer Company

Medusa Brewing Company (MA)

Monhegan Brewing Company

Oak Pond Brewery

Orono Brewing Company

Oxbow Brewing Co

Penobscot Bay Brewery

Rising Tide Brewing Co.

Proclamation Ale Company (RI)

Rock Harbor Brewing Co.

Sebago Brewing Co

Sheepscot Valley Brewing Co.

Shipyard Brewing Co.

Smuttlabs (NH)

SoMe Brewing Company

The Prodigal Brewery (NH)

The Run of the Mill Public House & Brewery

Tributary Brewing Co.

Tumbledown Brewing

Check back soon. More breweries are being added every week! (last updated 5/11/2015)

Out-of-State Guest Breweries currently include Cambridge Brewing Co., Medusa Brewing Co., The Prodigal Brewery, and Proclamation Ale Co.

For the most up-to-date list of attending breweries and to purchase tickets, visit the ticketing page at summersession2015.eventbrite.com

General admission will be from 1:00pm to 5:00pm and tickets are $45 if purchased in advance ($55 day of event). A limited number of $60 VIP tickets will offer early admittance and exclusive access to beers from a list of brewers to be announced. Designated driver tickets are available for $20.

Looking for Tickets to our Beer School Classes?

Looking for info on Beer School tickets? We always send out the link for beer school tickets to our email list subscribers first. Sign up for our mailing list now (look for the box on this page) to be sure to get early access to the tickets. We almost always send out an email the night before the on-sale, and generally we release tickets about 1 month before the event.

Otherwise, check out our Beer School page, where we sell tickets (click on ‘EVENTS’ in the header above) OR visit our ticketing page for events at http://mainebrewersguild.eventbrite.com

Beer Trail Passes Updated!

Looking for an adventure that will bring you all over Maine and have you earn free stuff just for visiting breweries?? Of course you are! You’re in luck, because the Maine Beer Trail offers just that! Check out our newly updated Maine Beer Trail passports here: http://mainebrewersguild.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/for-web.pdf Visit 10 breweries and have someone there sign it, and we’ll send you a quality trucker’s cap with our Maine Brewers’ Guild logo embroidered across the front. Visit 20 breweries and we’ll send you a Maine Brewers’ Guild logo t-shirt, and visit them all and you’ll get the prize pack filled with stuff from the Guild and member breweries all around the state! ….it’s time to join the hundreds of others who hit the trail every year, sampling great Maine-brewed beers, meeting the people behind the product, and discovering all the unique locations where our state’s brewers practice their craft! Print out a copy of the trail today or pick one up at your local brewery!

Maine Brewers’ Guild 2015 Summer Festival Announced!

Mark your calendars! We’ve locked in our date for our Maine Brewers’ Guild 2015 Brewfest - Saturday July 25th, 2015. We’ll be returning to Thompson’s Pt. in Portland this year so book those hotels now! We’ll release more details later, but plan for our biggest, and most well-organized, fun festival yet.

As an early heads up, we’re also exploring the potential to host or partner on another festival somewhere up along the coast or Augusta north to make sure EVERYONE in Maine has convenient access to all the great beers in Maine. Stay tuned for more info in the next couple of months…

Tickets for Beer School at Rising Tide Now on Sale

Beer Breaking Bad: Chemistry & Sensory of Off Flavors with Rising Tide Brewing Co.

TICKETS – Midday Class (1-3PM): http://mebeerschool2.eventbrite.com SOLD OUT

TICKETS – Afternoon Class (3:30-5:30PM): http://mebeerschool2pm.eventbrite.com SOLD OUT

Have you ever dreamed of being a part of the quality control group at a brewery? Ever wondered what sort of flavors quality control experts are looking for when sampling beers? Just interested in learning more about beer? If so, this event will be the perfect chance to spend an afternoon learning about what makes bad beer ‘bad’, and what makes great beer great, and some of the science behind it all.

Join us for our second Maine Beer School class and come prepared to sip your way to more beer knowledge! Highlighting the most common off-notes and flavors that can be found in beer, join Rising Tide Brewing Co’s Director of Quality Control, Haley Campbell and a small group for this sensory training workshop. Follow up the class with a little “quality control” of your own, enjoying a complimentary Rising Tide beer fresh from the tap.

Rising Tide Brewing Company is a small-scale, family-owned craft brewery in Portland, Maine. World-wide traditions meet New England ethic to create our unique, handcrafted artisanal ales.

Haley Campbell joined Rising Tide as the Director of Quality Control in 2014.  Prior to this, she worked as a laboratory technician and production assistant at Sebago Brewing Company. She graduated from Bates College in 2011 with a degree in environmental chemistry and completed the American Brewer’s Guild Intensive Brewing Science & Engineering course in 2013. This year, Haley Campbell has been profiled on CraftBeer.com as one of four Women Shaping the Brewing of Beer and by Maine Public Broadcasting Network as one of the Women Driving Growth in Maine’s Craft Beer Industry. This April, she will be presenting a seminar on how to develop quality control and laboratory programs within small breweries at the 2015 Craft Brewer’s Conference in Portland, Oregon. 

Announcing Maine Beer School!

Maine Brewers’ Guild Announces Plan to Launch Maine Beer School in 2015

(11.24.12) Move over Beer Camp, it’s time for Beer School. Although many might joke that they majored in beer in college, few can say they truly attended Beer School, until now.

Maine’s craft beer nonprofit – the Maine Brewers’ Guild, has announced the launch of Maine Beer School, with the first semester planned for 2015.

The organization will partner with its member breweries and allied members to launch a series of interactive, engaging classes to take place all around Maine in 2015 and beyond that will promote Maine’s world-class craft beer industry to the public, while raising funds for the organization. Part educational, part fun, the events and will offer a variety of interactive, small format events that aim to introduce novice and expert beer drinkers to the art, science, and personalities that make Maine’s craft beer scene unique.

Speaking about how the Beer School concept came together, executive director of the Guild, Sean Sullivan, explained, “Great beer is being produced all over the state, and breweries are thinking more about what makes them unique, and what expertise they want to share with the beer drinking community. Beer School offers a way for our brewers to give the public a peek behind the curtain, share their passion for the beer their brewing, and give Mainers and visitors a chance to have a one-of-a-kind experience centered around beer.”

The 2015 Beer School Spring Semester Course Catalog offers a glimpse of the types of classes that will be offered. Courses range from the introductory (“Hop Knowledge” with Maine Beer Co.), to the scientific (“Beer Breaking Bad: Chemistry and Sensory of Off-Flavors” with Rising Tide), to the artful (“The Art of Blending Barrels” with Allagash). Prices will vary by event but “will likely range between $25-50 per class, and go on sale approximately 4 weeks before each event” says Sullivan.

It won’t all be class time, however, Baxter Brewing will offer a field trip to Streaked Mountain in Hebron, and Orono Brewing Co. will be offering a mountain biking excursion. Likewise, Banded Horn will be welcoming students to owner Ian McConnell’s family farm in Etna, Maine to harvest spruce tips to be used to brew their Greenwarden beer.The offerings of Beer School will continue to evolve in future semesters. “There’s talk of brewer-home brewer conferences where home brewers would get feedback on their recipes, brews, and tips from the pros, and other events that involve a multiple breweries” said Sullivan.

“We have some of the most passionate beer drinkers in the country here in Maine, and we’re very excited to roll out this Beer School concept for 2015,” said Heather Sanborn, president of the board of directors for the Guild and co-owner of Rising Tide. “Beer School moves us beyond the traditional beer festival model and provides opportunities to promote Maine beer throughout the year.”

More info, and a full listing of courses can be found on the Maine Brewers’ Guild website at  http://mainebrewersguild.org/beerschool/

 

TONIGHT – Tuesday November 4th – Maine Brewers Tap Takeover at the Great Lost Bear

Come on out and join Maine’s brewing community to drink great beer, in support of beer. A variety of delicious Maine craft beers will be on tap – classics, new brews, and unique brews all mixed in, representing the full spectrum of the quality beers being brewed in our great state of Maine. To top it all off, The Great Lost Bear is generously donating a quarter from every pint of beer sold during the event to the Maine Brewers’ Guild – the only nonprofit dedicated to promoting and protecting the Maine craft beer industry. Really, you’re drinking for charity tonight! Featuring many beers never before poured at a bar in Portland, and representation from south to north, downeast to the western mountains and over 30 Maine breweries, including beers from…

D.L. GEARY, GRITTY MCDUFF’S, SHIPYARD, ALLAGASH, SEBAGO, SEA DOG, ANDREW’S, SHEEPSCOT, ATLANTIC, BLACK BEAR, BAXTER, MARSHALL WHARF, RISING TIDE, MAINE BEER, OXBOW, PEAK ORGANIC, BISSELL BROTHERS,  FOUNDATION, RUN OF THE MILL, IN’FINITI, FUNKY BOW, HIDDEN COVE, BIGELOW, ROCK HARBOR, STRONG, PENNESEEWASSEE, BANDED HORN, SoMe, PENOBSCOT, TUMBLEDOWN, GNEISS, BOOTHBAY, and TRIBUTARY

Join us for this awesome Portland Beer Week tap takeover and tweet your favorites to @MEBrewersGuild and #207BeerWeek

 

Showcase of Maine’s Newest Breweries Coming to Portland

Set to take place on Sunday November 2nd at noon within Coffee By Design’s Diamond Street location, the first annual ‘Freshmen Orientation’ event will showcase 12 of Maine’s newest breweries all in one place, all at one time, and is likely to be one of the premier events of Portland Beer Week (November 1-7).

For the cost of a few craft beers at the local pub, attendees will get about 10 minutes of ‘class time’ with each of the 12 ‘freshman’ breweries; learning about their background, the styles of beer they brew, their plans for the future, and of course, sampling their beer.

“We wanted to do a take on the traditional brewfest that eliminated the long lines and impersonal nature of grabbing a sample and walking away. This event will allow for attendees to really learn the stories behind our state’s newest breweries and showcase the incredible variety of delicious craft beer being brewed by our newest breweries,” explained Sean Sullivan, executive director of the Maine Brewers’ Guild.

If you’re one of the limited number of attendees who grabs a ticket before they sell out, you better not be tardy – ‘class’ starts promptly at noon when the bell rings. You’ll be grouped into a group of 10 fellow ‘pupils’ to head to your first class. From there you’ll rotate around the venue, from ‘class’ to ‘class’ with the bell to guide you – spending quality time with reps from each brewery. With many of these breweries not distributing beyond their local region, this will be a unique opportunity to sample beers from our state’s ‘Class of 2014′. By the end of the event, attendees will be one of the few who can say they’ve tried beers from all Maine’s newest breweries.

Participating breweries include Austin Street Brewery (Portland), Banded Horn (Biddeford), Barreled Souls (Saco), Bigelow Brewing (Skowhegan), Bissell Bros. (Portland), Foundation Brewing Co. (Portland), Gneiss Brewing Co. (Limerick), Hidden Cove Brewery (Wells), Lively Brewing (Brunswick), SoMe Brewing Co. (York), Tributary Brewing (Kittery), and Tumbledown Brewing (Farmington).

This event is sponsored by the Craft Beer Cellar in Portland and Pro Brewing Systems, and all proceeds will go to benefit the work of the Maine Brewers’ Guild. Tickets are $30 and available for sale online at Brown Paper Tickets (http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/896750).

Maine Craft Weekend – Yes, that includes Breweries!

The Maine Brewers’ Guild is proud to be working with the Maine Crafts Association on a unique, weekend long event – Maine Craft Weekend – happening in early October.  Click for the poster: Maine Craft Weekend_2014

The Maine Crafts Association, in partnership with the Maine Brewers’ Guild, announces Maine Craft Weekend October 11 + 12, 2014 Maine Craft Weekend (MCW), a statewide tour of Maine craft studios, breweries, businesses and events, is an opportunity for the public to explore the life and work of craft artists and craft brewers in Maine. MCW is a public, educational, community orientated, family friendly weekend October 11 + 12, 2014. MCW is scheduled in conjunction with American Craft Week, a nationwide event promoting craft events each October. Modeled after Maine Maple Sunday and Buy Local Saturday, this self-guided tour features participants all over the state who are not regularly open to the public, or, who have planned special MCW events and demonstrations at their locations.

Plan a route to include a pottery wheel lesson and a glass blowing demonstration in the morning, swing by a brew pub for lunch, wrap up the day perusing a craft show and start all over again on Sunday!

Maine Craft Weekend is produced by The Maine Crafts Association with Event Partner, the Maine Brewers’ Guild, and Organizational Partner, The Maine Department of Economic and Community Development’s Maine Made Program. These statewide organizations have successfully branded and promoted quality Maine Craft, Maine products, and craft beer, respectively; Maine Craft Weekend invites the public into these dynamic studios and businesses to see the magic behind the products they produce.

Examples of participating sites include individual potters’ home studios, craft galleries, glass blowing studios, outdoor installation sites, non-profit craft organizations, craft-based schools, craft beer breweries and craft beer brewery-restaurants. Events will vary by type of location and will include open studios, demonstrations, tastings, exhibitions, sales, tours, kids’ projects and other creative and interactive activities.

The public interested in visiting sites during Maine Craft Weekend can visit www.MaineCraftWeekend.org to learn about participants and events and use the interactive MCW map to plan their route! Craft artists, retailers, breweries and other related businesses and events interested in being included on the map and in our marketing should contact Marie Sugden @ the Maine Crafts Association: marie@mainecrafts.org or 207-588-0021. Maine Craft Weekend is supported by the Maine Office of Tourism.

New Maine Beer Trail Passports are here!

Get this, with the Maine Beer Trail, we actually reward you for visiting Maine’s breweries. Pick up the brand new 2014 version of the Maine Beer Trail Passport and get your passport stamped/signed when you visit any of the 45+ breweries and brewpubs around Maine, then send it in to us and be rewarded with free Maine Brewers’ Guild trucker hats, t-shirts, and a whole bunch of other Maine brewery gear. It’s a win-win.  VIEW THE MAINE BEER TRAIL PASSPORT