Maine Beer Co. Plans a Huge Brewery and Taproom Addition
With destinations like Allagash Brewing Company, Rising Tide, and Novare Res Bier Café, the Portland, Maine, area is already a go-to for beer tourists. But this is just the beginning.
This week, not only did old guard brewing company Sebago announce finalized plans for a $5 million expansion, but Maine Beer Co., makers of popular hoppy beers Lunch IPA and Peeper Ale, has submitted plans to quadruple its footprint in Freeport, the Portland Press Herald reported.
Maine Beer Co. is slated to appear before the local planning board on August 10. The plans the company submitted call for a new, 20,300-square foot building, next door to its current, 6,000-square foot home. (The Freeport brewery is Maine Beer’s second facility since it was founded in 2009; it outgrew its original brewhouse on Portland’s Industrial Way, and moved to Freeport in 2013.)
The two-story addition will house brewing, bottling, and storage operations, as well as staff offices and facilities. The existing building will be used as an expanded tasting room and retail space. The plans also call for nearly 100 more parking spaces, as well as an outdoor seating area designed to accomodate a food truck, according to the Press Herald.
For special, brewery-only releases, like Dinner double IPA, Maine Beer Co. fans drive for hours, rent hotel rooms, and even pitch tents on brewery grounds for a chance to purchase a case of the coveted brew, cofounder Dan Kleban previously told Boston. For an August 20 release of Dinner #8, the line officially opens at 3 a.m., and sales start at 7 a.m.
Sebago cofounders Kai Adams, Brad Monarch, and Tim Haines had a planning board meeting with the town of Gorham on August 1, they announced in a press release. There are a few more regulatory hurdles to jump over, but the trio says construction on a new facility across town could begin as early as November.
“Our vision for this brewery is to create a place where people can walk the trail system or go cross-country skiing, and then take a tour of our brewery and sample Sebago beers paired with small plates from our wood-fired oven in the tasting room,” Adams says in the release.
The 30,965-square foot brewery would allow Sebago to double its production capacity. The new space would also have a 9,000-square foot taproom, as well as outdoor seating. Sebago, which started brewing in 1998, is known for its IPA Frye’s Leap. It has brewpubs in Portland, Scarborough, Gorham, and Kennebunk, in addition to its existing Gorham headquarters.
Elsewhere in the Portland area, Bissell Brothers, a newer player making waves with juicy, hazy ales like the Substance, took over Maine Beer Co.’s vacated Industrial Way space, but this year, it outgrew it, too. The company opened moved to Thompson’s Point in Portland in the spring. Rising Tide and Foundation Brewing also grew their operations this year, the Press Herald reports.