‘Tis the last week of another great year,
For 2017 was filled with Maine beer.
New brewers they came, old breweries grew,
And beer lovers were ne’er left wanting for brew,
From tasting rooms to brewpubs, beer fests and more
‘Twas a great year on Maine’s rocky shore.
This was the year David Geary retired;
His brewery was the first one to inspire
The legions of brewers who man the brew tanks,
So for that, Mr. Geary, we toast you in thanks!
Now on to the brewers who opened their doors,
Showing the future Maine beer has in store.
Battery Steele, with its bright IPAs,
Will leave your mouth feeling sated for days.
Woodland Farms brews up some clean lager beers,
While Lake St. George returns after many a year.
Yes Brewing in Westbrook is a hip joint,
Its Mint IPA is always on point.
Nonesuch Brewing they built a striking brewpub,
While South Portland’s Island Dog is now making suds.
Drive up to Brunswick to try Flight Deck’s beer,
Now to East Bayside for some Goodfire cheer.
Cushnoc is brewing in our state capital,
Augusta just got a bit more palatal.
North Haven did open far off on the isle,
To get there a ferry will take you in style.
This was a fine year for many a farm;
Their hops and their grains give our beer local charm.
The Hopyard and Blue Ox, Buck Farms and Maine Grains
Keep sowing and reaping the land they maintain,
While Shipyard and Allagash made a commitment
To farmers to buy a tonnage of shipment.
In year four of the Maine Madness Beer Tourney,
Foundation’s Epiphany won the long journey.
This was the year Maine brewers did wrestle
A shipping container into a beer vessel;
The Maine Beer Box traversed cold ocean waters,
Bringing our beer to Iceland’s sons and daughters.
And let us remember the raucous brewfests.
Over 20 beer fairs gave no time for rest:
Summer Session, Funk Fest and Goods from the Woods,
Great Falls, Zwanze Day, it’s well understood,
Maine brewers can throw down under a tent —
For a brewfest can be a life-changing event.
This was the year that brewers were able
To declare independence upon their beer labels.
Look for the Certified Craft brewing seal,
So Anheuser-Busch never can steal
The glorious beer scene inside of our state;
May Maine beer remain independent and great.
How can 2018 ever aspire
To outdo the way this year slaked our desires?
But, lo, on the horizon big things are stewing,
For next year is sure to bring inventive brewing.
New beers and brewfests and tasting room mirth,
There’s no better place to drink beer on this earth.
Maine brewers they fill our bellies with cheer,
So raise high your pints and ring in the new year!
OTHER BEER HAPPENINGS
9 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., Sunday, 49 Washington Ave, Portland, free. On Facebook.
If you’re looking for a beer-forward, ultra-hip hang for New Year’s Eve, head to Oxbow Blending and Bottling for its annual Sparkle Party. This party always features the release of Mr. Sparkles, a 3.5 percent mixed-fermentation farmhouse table beer. In addition, expect a killer DJ, plenty of dancing in Oxbow’s spacious Washington Avenue tasting room and a long list of farmhouse ales and guest taps.
If you haven’t taken a tour on The Maine Brew Bus, you’re truly missing out. A trip on the neon green bus is a deep dive into the world of Maine beer. Having already expanded into Massachusetts with the Mass Brew Bus, Zach Poole, founder of the Maine Brew Bus, recently announced the purchase of the Rhode Island Brew Bus. The newly acquired bus tour will give beer lovers access to 20 breweries and wineries in the Rhode Island area. Expect the same high-quality tours from both the Mass Brew Bus and the Rhode Island Brew Bus that we’ve come to appreciate from the Maine Brew Bus. If you forgot to buy a gift for someone on your list this year, a bus tour is a nice way to say, “Sorry.”