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Take a Look at our Summer 2019 Tour Schedule

Don LittlefieldPublic Tours

Summer-Tour-Schedule-2019

Once again, we have been hard at work updating our tour schedule for the summer and fall seasons here in Maine. But the effort has paid off, with up to 35 different tour itineraries available each week! Take a look at our new schedule which is now on sale through the end of October.

When we create new tour schedules, we really make it hard on ourselves to try to work in as many different companies as possible.  It truly would be much easier on us to not make so many changes, and just go to the same handful of producers for all of our tours. But we do not do that, of course.

We ask for feedback from our guests, our staff, and our partners about our tours and schedules with an eye for us to make improvements. Our team reviews that information weekly, and twice a year we look at our entire schedule and evaluate each of our tours.

As part of that process, we meet with our partners in order to share the data and comments about their particular business, and how our future tour visits can be improved for our guests.

We see many new breweries, wineries, and distilleries open around Greater Portland each year. We often meet with these new companies well before they open to the public. With our stated goal to visit as many producers of craft alcohol as possible, they often end up on our tours as soon as they are ready to showcase their company and provide our guests a great experience. 

In the warmer months, there are more people around Greater Portland every day. We have created new tour offerings to connect our guests in new ways to great local craft beer, wine, and spirits.

These tours are always designed to create amazing experiences to truly bring our guests behind-the-scenes to learn more about each company than you would by simply visiting a tasting room.

Here are just some of the “new” things you can see on board our tours this summer and fall!

New Tours

Check out these brand new and revised tour itineraries connecting more people to more great local producers of craft alcohol in Southern Maine.

Best of Portland and Taste the Town
True, these weekday tours are not exactly new. But the way that we are conducting them certainly is. These tours run Monday through Thursday, now with two departures on each day.
Learn more…

The Best of Portland tour visits a mix of breweries and wineries and is available every Monday and Wednesday with two departure times of 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM and 2:30 PM – 5:30 PM.

The Taste the Town tour is designed for the beer lover and runs every Tuesday and Thursday with the same two departure times of 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM and 2:30 PM – 5:30 PM.

Beerunch – Now offered every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as the first tour of the day! Some of the breweries are changed up based on the day, but the tour always starts at Bissell Brothers before they open to the public for the day.
Learn more…

Fermented Friday – Start your weekend in Portland off on the proper foot with our brand new Friday night tour with a 5:00 PM departure that visits one brewery, one winery, and one distillery!
Learn more…

Not Your Average Wine Tour – This popular Saturday late afternoon tour is back! It visits three different producers of wine that is made from grapes, honey, and rhubarb. These products are also gluten-free, making this a perfect option for individuals and group looking for something other than beer.
Learn more…

Southern Crawl – Now offered twice a weekend, on both Saturday and Sunday! Hit the mills of Biddeford and Saco with us on the bus as we visit some of the places producing great beer south of Portland.
Learn more…

Northern Exposure – This three stop all-beer tour will take you to both Freeport and Brunswick to explore their growing beer scenes! This tour includes a brand new stop for us, Stars & Stripes Brewing in Freeport (see below). Learn more…

New Stops

Many new places have opened up in the past few months, and we have added several of them right into our tour schedule. There are still a couple of places that will be opening in the next few weeks, and they will be included in our tours as soon as they are ready. Be among the first to discover the next big name to come out of Maine!

Stars & Stripes Brewing, Freeport – Stars & Stripes Brewing is a veteran owned and operated brewery founded by Brad and Nancy Nadeau that fittingly opened in Freeport on Veteran’s Day in November of 2018. Visit the 2,000 square foot tasting room that is filled with military memories, and also the 1,000-square-foot outside deck overlooking a small pond on our Northern Exposure tour. Learn more…

Battery Steele Brewing, Portland – Jake Condon and Shane Noble opened Battery Steele on a 10-barrel system in May 2017. They are located in a former carpet and casket warehouse in the same complex as two other breweries – and across the street from Allagash. In their early days, their popularity meant they would sell out of beer often and were not able to host our tour guests. But after the expansion of both their production capacity and their tasting room, our guests can now enjoy their tasty creations on our Suds and Spirits tour. Learn more…

Nuts & Bolts Brewing, Biddeford – Patrick Doherty and Deedra Zeeh opened Nuts & Bolts in Biddeford in April of 2018. Located in one of the city’s many former textile mills, their combined brewing space and taproom is certainly not large with just over 1,000 square feet. They are operating a truly nano-brewery, and this allows them a lot of creativity and experimentation. The results in the glass show that they are skilled at coaxing some amazing flavors out of their small footprint. Check them out on our Southern Crawl tour. Learn more…

Brewery Extrava, Portland – Founders Joe and Charlene Doherty, along with brewing industry veteran Michael LaCharite, plan to open Brewery Extrava in Portland’s East Bayside area in July 2019. They are looking to create both traditional and innovative variations of Belgian and other international beer styles, including mixed fermentation and barrel-aged beers. Their goal is to offer a contrast in style from the hop-forward portfolio of many of the breweries in the area. Learn the origin of the word extrava on a future tour this summer! Learn more…

Three of Strong Spirits, Portland  – Three of Strong is a rum distillery that is planning to open in Portland’s lively East Bayside neighborhood in July of 2019. Founded by financial and investment leader Sam Pierce along with David McConnell, a beverage industry attorney, their 6,200 square foot tasting room is also their distillation workshop. Distiller Graham Hamblett was previously the master distiller at Dogfish Head Distilling Co. in Delaware. This summer you can learn about the historical origin of their unique company name as you enjoy rum-based cocktails in Maine’s newest distillery. Learn more…

New Access

We try to give our guests unprecedented look behind-the-scenes of our partners, many of which do not offer any formal scheduled tours.

Here are just a few of the highlights that our guests will enjoy for access on our tours.

Lone Pine Brewing Company – Their spacious brand new tasting room at their relatively new production facility in Gorham is now part of our flagship itinerary – the Casco Fiasco tour! Learn more…

Bissell BrothersThis very popular brewery is now visited four times each week, and always before they open to the public! Our guests on these early tours that are offered Thursday through Sunday often get to tour the brewhouse, enjoy the first tastes of whatever is new on tap that day, and learn about how this brewery has grown so rapidly. Learn more…

Maine Beer Company – This long-time guest favorite brewery is now the first stop on our Sunday afternoon Drinks About Town tour. They recently opened a very impressive new tasting room, and we might even be able to take a look at their massive brewing operations facility. Learn more…

Sebago BrewingThis local company with four brewpubs now has a one-year-old destination brewery to visit in Gorham. We now have a complete all-access tour of this amazing facility, with beers available throughout our visit. On our Saturday Casco Fiasco tour, this brewery serves as a lunch stop – with wood-fired pizzas and more made to order for our guests. Learn more…

New Options

These tours to local breweries, wineries, and more feature methods of travel other than by bus. Find these unique tour offerings under our Maine Beer Tours designation.

Brews CruiseEnjoy a brewery tour not by land, but by sea! Perfect for larger groups, we hop aboard a vessel from our partners from Portland Harbor Water Tours to enjoy a harbor cruise and a stop at a local brewery. Then back aboard the boat to return to Portland and another stop at a legendary Portland brewery. Learn more…

Bike and BrewsIf you’d prefer to bicycle around scenic Portland to visit breweries, we have that option for you in partnership with our friends at Summer Feet Cycling! Featuring 3-mile and 10-mile routes, these guided tours at a very leisurely pace are designed to use multi-use paths and bicycle lanes that also conveniently allow us to visit great stops. Learn more…

Walk, Talk, and TasteIt’s a brand new way to visit Portland breweries – a walking tour focusing on the history of beer in Portland. Hit the bricks with our knowledgeable guide and learn much more about the birthplace of Prohibition as you visit three remarkable breweries for tastes. Learn more…

Port City Running Brew TourOur tour groups lace up their sneakers and hit the road for a leisurely run to three great local stops. In partnership with Port City Running Tours, we run first and drink after as we learn more about the role Portland has played in brewing in Maine. Learn more…

New Capacity

For larger groups looking to book a privately chartered tour, we have a new relationship with Scenic Route Maine Tours that often allows us access to use their larger vehicles. We have created some specialized itineraries that will allow groups up to 20 people to visit some of our larger local breweries, wineries, and distilleries all together on a custom tour.

Is your group larger than 20 people? We can also charter medium and large coach-style buses from local transportation companies that would allow the entire group to stay together for the outing. We would work with our partners to find the right locations where these larger groups will feel comfortable.

Contact our Group Sales Coordinator today to find out more about these new higher-capacity options!

New Staff

In order to accomplish all of these new initiatives, we have recently added 6 new staff to our tour operations team.

You will find many interesting backgrounds of the folks that are driving and guiding your tours – including commercial brewers, authors, tour operators from other countries, military veterans, engineers, teachers, and even people that are planning to open their own breweries at some point!

Learn more about our new team members in our series of staff profiles.

Hop on Board!

We are excited to show you all of these new parts of our tours. We invite you to hop on board and let us show you why we love Driving You to Drink Local!

Check out our full tour schedule here!

Download a PDF version of our Summer Tour Schedule


Don Littlefield is the General Manager of Brew Bus Tours. He last enjoyed an IPA beer called CMYK  from Goodfire Brewing in Portland, Maine. Twitter @BeerinME