The Southern Crawl
Hit the mills of Biddeford and Saco with the Maine Brew Bus as we visit some of the places producing great beer south of Portland.
Just as Portland's craft beer industry began to flourish, the neighboring towns to the south followed suit and began exploring the possibilities with in the industry. Join us on our Southern Crawl tour to check out some amazing facilities just south of Portland!
Every Saturday 3:30-7:00pm
Every Sunday 2:30-6:00pm
Please arrive 15 minutes before tour start time for check-in and to ensure a timely departure.
Pick-Up & Drop-Off Location
Old Port Spirits and Cigars, 79 Commercial St, Portland, ME 04101
Snack – Vegetarian hand pie from Union Kitchen, 1 Union Wharf, Portland
Saturday: Banded Brewing // Nuts & Bolts Brewing // Barreled Souls Brewing Company
Sunday: Island Dog // Run of the Mill // Banded Brewing
As Maine’s total number of breweries climbs, clusters form beyond the Portland city limits. On the Southern Crawl tour, we’ll explore some of the happenings south of Portland.
About the Breweries:
Banded Brewing – Banded Brewing Company was founded in the winter of 2013 by cousins Ron Graves and Ian McConnell. It was fitting as these two had started homebrewing together back in 2005, and Ian had received excellent preparatory training for commercial brewing while serving as the head brewer at Brooklyn’s Sixpoint Brewery. They opened Biddeford’s first ever brewery in a 200-year-old mill building, part of the historic Pepperell Mills complex. Banded’s variety of both ales and lagers, as well as the spacious tasting room filled with multiple entertainment options, make this stop truly unforgettable.
Barreled Souls Brewing Company – Barreled Souls was founded in the summer of 2014, and was once the only brewery in the country using a Burton Union system – a wooden fermenter method originally developed in England in the 1800’s and was once the industry standard. All of their beer is produced in Saco, with larger quantities made at their Mill Brook facility and smaller batches made adjacent to their basement-level tasting room. They have become quite well-known on the national stage for creating unorthodox pastry stouts using anything from bacon to marshmallows. When visiting this brewery, it is best to be prepared to taste the unexpected.
Island Dog Brewing Company – Island Dog was established in 2016 by Jim Denz and Tim Francis, and are now the third brewery to call South Portland home. They produce primarily Belgian and German-inspired beers (including herb and spice ales), and the company name comes from the owner’s love of rescue dogs and the sheer beauty of Coastal Maine. Jim spent time in the Army, worked as a high school teacher, and spent many years working in technology. Jim met Tim, who has experience with homebrewing (in addition to a diverse background including retail, food service, and communications) at a beer festival a few years ago. Enjoy their spacious tasting room as you sip on beers infused with ingredients that you didn’t know would taste so good in beer.
Nuts & Bolts Brewing. 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 as well, they only have the ability to produce one barrel – or 31 gallons of beer – at a time. But this allows them a lot of creativity and experimentation, and the results in the glass show that they are skilled at coaxing some amazing flavors out of their small footprint.
Run of the Mill – Formerly managed by Maine Brew Bus founder Zach Poole, Run of the Mill occupies a beautiful old mill building overlooking the Saco River. This brewpub has a wide line-up of beers produced in traditional British-style open fermenters, and its unique two-story brewing setup is a perfect place to learn about the brewing process with a sample in hand. Fun fact: Run of the Mill is the sister brewpub to Hallowell’s The Liberal Cup.
At the conclusion of the Southern Crawl tour, we will drop you off back at Old Port Spirits and Cigars, where you can pick up some beer for later in the night or head out into the Old Port.
Please note that tour stops may change without notice due to events and availability of staff at each venue.