Maine’s craft beer scene enables full-throttle entrepreneurship.
By Brian Kevin
A marine biologist, a doctor, a pastor, an oyster farmer, and a lawyer walk into a bar. Actually, it was the lovely tasting room at Allagash Brewing Company in Portland, and from left to right (above), the drinkers were Lee Reeve, quality control technician at Allagash; John Bonney, co-founder and co-owner of Portland’s Foundation Brewing Company; Andrew Geaghan, co-owner and brewer at Bangor’s Geaghan Bros. Brewing Co.; Steve Gorrill, owner and brewer at Whitefield’s Sheepscot Valley Brewing Company; and Heather Sanborn, director of business operations and co-owner of Portland’s Rising Tide Brewing Company.
Photographed by Mark Fleming
Video by Kevin Sennett
All are dressed in the garb of the jobs they left behind for a career in beer (or, in some cases, in which they still moonlight outside the brewery). Players in Maine’s beer world include former millworkers, former cops, former teachers, former engineers, former (and current) lobstermen — we dare you to name another industry in which so many movers-and-shakers are defectors from completely unrelated fields, usually home brewers whose hobby got out of hand. Don’t let anyone tell you beer isn’t a gateway drug: it leads to full-throttle entrepreneurship.
Get a behind-the-scenes look at our photo shoot at Allagash Brewing Company with some of the personalities of the Maine beer world!
Get our June issue for the full Maine craft beer feature section, including 5 Essential Maine Summer Beers. Gift subscriptions available.