October 24, 2012

Something big is brewing for Portland Beer Week

Now in its second year, the celebration of the local sudsculture has grown by hops and bounds.

By Meredith Goad mgoad@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

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Organizer Allison Stevens says that Portland Beer Week “is about beer in the community and beer as a culture ...”

Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer

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A tasting on Nov. 6 at The Thirsty Pig in Portland will pair beers and cheeses.

Gordon Chibroski/Staff Photographer

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WHEN: Nov. 4-11

WHERE: Three Dollar Dewey's, 241 Commercial St., Portland; 772-3310

WHAT: $3 dollar pints of the selected Geary's and Shipyard of the day.


WHEN: Nov. 4-11

WHERE: Brian Boru, 57 Center St., Portland; 780-1506

WHAT: $9.99 lunch special of the day includes a pint of Geary's or Shipyard.


WHEN: Nov. 4-11

WHERE: Portland Pie, 51 York St., Portland; 772-1231

WHAT: Enjoy $3 pints of Shipyard and Geary's all week long.


WHEN: Nov. 4-11

WHERE: RSVP, 887 Forest Ave., Portland; 773-8808

WHAT: Special pricing on 12 packs of Geary's and Shipyard.


WHEN: Nov. 4-11

WHERE: Dogfish Bar & Grill, 128 Free St.; 772-5483

WHAT: Enjoy $3 Maine pints all night Monday and Tuesday, $3 Old Thumper Pints Wednesday, along with more $3 pints of Geary's and Shipyard over the weekend.


WHEN: Nov. 5-10

WHERE: Dogfish Cafe, 953 Congress St., Portland; 253-5400

WHAT: Each dinner special will be paired with a select Shipyard or Geary's Beer.


WHEN: Nov. 4-11

WHERE: Ri Ra Irish Pub, 72 Commercial St., Portland; 761-4446

WHAT: Local beer-inspired dinner specials, featuring Shipyard, Geary's, Allagash, Baxter, Sebago and Belfast Bay.


WHEN: Nov. 4-10: Hours are 5 to 10 p.m. Sunday to Tuesday; 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. Wednesday to Saturday

WHERE: Shipyard Lounge at the Marriott Residence Inn, 145 Fore St., Portland; 761-1660

WHAT: $3 Shipyard Pints and free seasonal appetizers while supplies last.

Miller was a home brewer for 15 years and became interested in the style guidelines used to judge beer quality.

"Six years ago, my quest for flavors migrated to artisanal cheeses, which share many of the same fermentation methods used for brewing," she said.

Today, she does pairing consulting for brewers, cheesemakers, restaurants, taprooms and festivals throughout New England.

Most people think of pairing cheeses with different wines, but Miller says beer and cheese share far more similarities in terms of origin of ingredients, flavors and fermentation methods.

"Beer allows for a much wider palette of flavors to work with, given the diversity of styles available and use of a tremendous variety of ingredients," Miller said. "Wine makers are more tradition-bound and must rely on geography, soil and climate to produce the quality of grapes of their respective vintage. Beer is more consistent and free of the vagaries of a 'bad year.' "

Beer also has the advantage of carbonation, which allows flavors to more fully disperse on the palate.

Miller says her aim with this event is to "showcase the uber-local terroir" of the beers and cheeses.

The second beer-and-cheese event will be held from 6 to 10 p.m. Nov. 6 at The Thirsty Pig.

This event will pair Belgian and Belgian-style beers with cheeses from the Cabot Farmers' Annex on Commercial Street and beers from Allagash Brewing with international cheeses from Micucci.



Hipsters, get your coolest threads on and head over to The Thirsty Pig on Nov. 7, and you might just win some free concert tickets.

Urban Outfitters will be showcasing a collection of clothing and goods for the modern beer drinker in a fashion show from 4 to 8 p.m. The beer of choice that night will be – what else? – Hipster Ale from Brooklyn's Evil Twin Brewing.

There will also be a costume contest searching for the "best dressed hipster." The winner will receive two tickets to the Tragically Hip show that night at the State Theatre.



If you've seen a big green bus painted with hops and a cheeky slogan on the side – "Driving You to Drink Local" – you've caught a glimpse of the Maine Brew Bus, one of Portland's newest businesses (themainebrewbus.com).

Zach Poole first thought about creating the shuttle last fall, then debuted his big green bus at the Portland Brew Festival just a few short weeks ago, over Labor Day weekend.

"After seeing all the tourists that come into town," Poole said, "I just thought it would be a great way to provide safe transportation to some of the local Maine brew pubs and breweries and drinking establishments to promote Maine beer."

The bus has 12 seats, plus one wheelchair accessible seat.

Poole will be offering free rides from 4 to 8 p.m. the first day of Portland Beer Week, making stops at Bull Feeney's, East Ender, Great Lost Bear, Gritty's, LFK, Nosh, Novare Res, Sebago, the Shipyard Lounge at the Residence Inn and The Thirsty Pig.

Flag down the bus, or call 200-9111 to arrange transportation in advance.

"It's a free shuttle, and I'll have a tip bucket on the bus," Poole said. "I'll make a stop at each location and probably run inside to say I'm there. They can also call ahead. If they have a group of people that want to be picked up somewhere, I can go and grab them and bring them one place, and they they can kind of start the rounds."

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Additional Photos

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Zach Poole will be driving the Maine Brew Bus during Portland Beer Week.

Gordon Chibroski, Staff Photographer

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Rich Hirschman of Portland Rock Lobster will bring some of his hot sauces to The Thirsty Pig for a tasting on Nov. 8.

Courtesy photo

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