Every summer I make at least one trip up to Maine to visit family and friends. Ideally I make multiple trips, but with the new addition to the family it looks like my recent 4th of July weekend trek to the north could be it for this summer. With that in mind I felt the need to maximize this trip, and I think I accomplished that. In all I managed to visit five breweries over the long weekend, tasting and purchasing some delicious beer along the way. My wife and I have developed a bit of a tradition on these trips, every year we try to stop at Gritty McDuff’s Brewpub in Freeport for either lunch or dinner. We’ve eaten at some pretty strange times to make this work, but it is completely worth it to hold up the tradition. This stop has multiple advantages, it’s right off of 295, the food is good and the beer is solid, and the pub is right down the street from Maine Beer Company, so it would be foolish not to stop there too. The Maine Beer Company stop is always a treat, their incredible IPAs Lunch and Another One might be hard to find in Boston but the brewery typically has them in stock and they are incredibly fresh. They also have a great selection of their other beers, including some limited releases. One of the beers I grabbed on this trip was Beer II, the second release in MBC’s hop program. Beer II is a session IPA brewed with Amarillo, Citra, Simcoe and Hallertau Blanc hops. It is available for a limited time on draft and in 500 mL bottles.
Maine Beer Company Beer II pours a clear straw yellow with a mild white head. The scent is a huge burst of fruity hops, dominated by tropical and citrus. The taste is also very hop forward, notes of grapefruit, passion fruit, lemon and tangerine. The hops also add some bitterness, but it is on the lighter/crisper side. The malts are muted, with just a touch of biscuit and honey. Beer II drinks very easy, with a clean finish, and is very sessionable at 4.7% ABV. This is a well done session IPA, tons of hop flavor without being one-note. I still personally prefer some of their “traditional” IPAs like Lunch and Another One, but this is a very nice lower alcohol alternative. Hoppy Boston score: 4.25/5.
Previous Maine Beer Co Reviews: