Medford Brewing Company Ships Out Its First Release

The American Pale Ale is a crisp, citrusy flagship for the new contract brewery.

Medford Brewing Company American Pale Ale cans

Medford Brewing Company American Pale Ale cans. / Images via Facebook

On the heels of a brand new brewery opening for growler fills in Cambridge over the weekend, Medford now has fresh beer to call its own, too. Literally.

Medford Brewing Company just distributed the first few dozen cases of its American Pale Ale, the flagship brew from the startup. Head brewer and partner Max Heinegg brewed 20 barrels of the citrusy ale for this first round, and another 20 barrels are currently fermenting at Medford Brewing Co.’s contract facility, Great North Aleworks in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Initially, cofounder Nick Bolitho intended to release two beers to start—the APA and a classic India Pale Ale—but production capacity and early demand for the pale ale have refocused his attention to just one beer for now. Stores have so far preordered 120 cases of the 173 that were produced in the past few days, with one local chain already reordering the American Pale Ale, Bolitho says.

“The response has been so great it’s forced us to keep production up on that one,” he says. “I don’t want to end up completely running out, at any stage. We’re using all the capacity we have to concentrate on the APA to keep that flowing.”

Available in four-pack, 16-ounce cans, the American Pale Ale is hoppy, but not bitter.

“We blended Continental pilsner, American two-row and Caramel, and German Munich malts for a beer whose body is as flavorful and refreshing as its hop profile,” Bolitho says. It’s dry-hopped with citrusy, American cones, to up the aroma and flavor.

The APA will retail in the $12-$13 range, and is so far available at locations of Giles, Atlas, and Kappy’s liquor stores. Cans are also behind the bar at Salvatore’s in Medford. More places to buy it are on the way.

Medford Brewing Co. has been in the works for more than a year. Contract brewing and distribution is Phase 1, but Bolitho is making moves toward opening his own brewery and taproom, where Heinegg could experiment with more styles that likely won’t make it onto retail shelves this year.

“I would like to have that by this time next year,” Bolitho says.

He is starting conversations to secure equipment as well as real estate, but he has no concrete plans to share at this time. “I would love to go into Medford Square. There is lots of good work happening right now to revitalize [that area,] and I think [Medford Brewing Co.] would be a great draw overall for the city.”

He also has his eyes on West Medford, though he acknowledges he might have to go further off the beaten path. “We’re focused on staying in Medford.”

In the meantime, find a crisp APA to get acquainted with Medford’s newest brewers. In the coming weeks, look out for the IPA, too.

“We’ve got 11,000 empty cans waiting to get filled,” Bolitho says.