If you've ever visited southern California or the Pacific Northwest, the idea of food trucks would be just part of your consciousness. Walking around any decently sized city, near parks and sidled up to breweries, food trucks are just a part of the culture.
Now, before you spit out your coffee (or beer) when you hear the terms "coffee" and "IPA" in the same beer name, this perhaps isn't such an insane idea. After all, coffee stouts blend their own roasted bitterness with the sharp coffee notes to great success - why shouldn't this other bitterness found in strong hops work just as well?
What beer geek or home brewer wouldn't jump at the chance to be brewer for a day at a major brewery? Sebago Brewing Company offered just that chance on Saturday for a lucky few people at their annual "Brewing for a Cause."
When I was young, and searching for something I'd lost, my mom would suggest that I stop looking for it. "It is only when you stop that you'll realize where it is," she'd say. Most of the time she was right. My glasses, books or keys would suddenly show up somewhere obvious as soon as I stopped turning over couch cushions in panic.
Imagine walking into your favorite beer store. Maybe it's Bier Cellar on Forest Avenue, perhaps it's a little farther down the road at RSVP Beverage, or in the Old Port at Maine Beer and Beverage Company. When you walk in, you are greeted by the usual selection of bottled beer, but you see something new as well.
This weekend I was walking around downtown in search of a place to get some work done, and stopped in to the Portland Public Market on Monument Square. On the first floor, I always stop at the Maine Beer and Beverage Company.
As much as I do enjoy Lunch, I want to tell you about another beer by Maine Beer Company that's recently won my heart - MO. Named as a nod to brewer Daniel Kleban's twins Madeline and Oliver - this one is not an IPA but instead an American Pale Ale, and hasn't reached the level of national fame that Lunch has.
But being a new brewery (and distillery) I, of course, had to go down to think about the merits of the beer that they are currently brewing. What I found was not what I was expecting - but definitely worth a taste.
If you ever want to take a break from craft beer in Maine, there are lots of other fermented and distilled beverages being crafted in the neighborhood to fill the void. Meads, which are essentially honey wines with origins in the distant past, come in a variety of flavors from super sweet to dry.
With more breweries than ever opening in the U.S., some start-ups are looking beyond traditional fundraising efforts to get brewing. A growing mode of start-up fundraising has emerged through crowd-funding sites such as Kickstarter.