The Oktoberfest brew at Nonesuch River Brewing in Scarborough has a caramel, maple finish. Sydney Richelieu / The Forecaster

The fall season for many means football and apple picking, crisp air and corn mazes, but with a local brewery seemingly around every corner, it also means seasonal beers.

Maine has the highest number of breweries per capita, according to the Maine Brewers’ Guild, and Southern Maine has the bulk of them, each offering a different experience for beer drinkers. Of those who produce special fall brews, pumpkin seems to be the most popular flavor profile, whether it be spiced or sweet.

At Black Pug Beer in Brunswick, co-owner and brewmaster Sam Wilson has created four distinct fall brews for customers to enjoy.

Pumpkin-spiced Fade #Basic is now on tap at Black Pug Brewery in Brunswick. Contributed / Sam Wilson

Fade #Basic was the first brew to hit the tanks this fall. Made with pumpkin in the mash, pumpkin spice, cold brew coffee, cacao nibs, milk, sugar and vanilla, Wilson calls it the “pumpkin-spiced” version of Black Pug’s white stout.

“It’s our take on a pumpkin spice coffee but lacks the bitterness and intensity that roasted grains bring to a stout,” he said.

A “special” Applewood Smoked Malt version of Black Pug’s Kolsch style ale is made from Blue Ox Malthouse’s smoked malt.


“This style really lets the smoky flavors and sweetness of the applewood malt stand on a pedestal,” Wilson said. “It’s our perfect bonfire beer.”

Black Pug has also brewed its Nightingale Black IPA. It’s a classic IPA recipe with a bit of added roast and color, creating a perfect balance between citrusy hops and chocolate, he said.

The fourth fall offering, Nice Yams Sweet Potato ESB, is a classic copper-colored, pub-style ale with a bit of added caramel color thanks to sweet potatoes added to the mash.

“This is a nice balanced malty beer perfect for cool nights, and also makes a fantastic ingredient addition to dishes like baked beans,” Wilson said.

Black Pug’s four brews join the growing list of special fall beer offerings around the state. Just a sampling of those offerings includes Freeport-based Maine Beer Company’s signature autumn beer aptly named Fall, a coffee stout made with cold brew coffee sourced from Coffee by Design; Marzen the First, a caramel- and maple-inspired take on Oktoberfest from Nonesuch River Brewing in Scarborough; and Pumpkin Party, a pumpkin-spiced ale from Lone Pine Brewery in Portland, Gorham and Westbrook.

To check out more fall beer offerings, find a list of Maine breweries at

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