Maine is up-and-coming in the beer scene, and while we all love to throw back a bottle of Pumpkinhead (besides my boss, who is vehemently opposed to pumpkin beer), it’s good to switch things up. Next time you’re reaching for a cold one while sitting around a fire in a flannel and Bean Boots, try one of the following five brews.
The dark and dreamy counterpart to everyone’s favorite citrusy Allagash White, Allagash Black features dark chocolate and coffee notes with a hint of caramelized sugar. Allagash boasts that this beer pairs well with everything from shepherd’s pie to oatmeal raisin cookies, which scream autumn comfort food to me.
Shipyard Smashed Pumpkin
Availability: August – October
A step up from the typical Pumpkinhead from Shipyard’s lineup of seasonal beers, Smashed Pumpkin is part of the Pugsley Signature Series, and has notes of pumpkin (obviously) and nutmeg, and a delicate balance of malts and hops to cut that sweetness with spice and body.
Today's #BOTD is from @shipyardbrewing – the Smashed Pumpkin! Tis the season for #pumpkinbeer and on our Pumpkin Beer podcast we compared this side-by-side with their Pumpkinhead. #shipyardbrewing #shipyardsmashedpumpkin #pumpkinale #pumpkinbeerseason #craftbeer #craftbeerlover #beersofinstagram #beerporn #beer #beerpodcast #beerofthedaypodcast #BeeroftheDay
Sebago Brewing Bonfire Rye
Availability: August – November
Sometimes, it’s all in a name, but in this case, Sebago’s Bonfire Rye has the flavor to back it up. This earthy brew begs to be drunk around a blazing fire with friends. It’s piney, a little bit sweet, and doesn’t hold back on the hops.
Gritty McDuff’s Halloween Ale
This beer is the ultimate trick and treat. Brewed in the Extra Special Bitter style, you’ll first taste bitter notes of malt and toasted caramel before a sweet finish of apple, pear, and hops. It’s perfect for the anti-pumpkin crowd and embodies autumn in a bottle.
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Downeast Pumpkin Cider
Availability: September to November
For the gluten-free folks or those with a sweet tooth, Downeast’s Pumpkin Cider is the Pumpkin Spice Latte of the cider world. Made by adding pumpkin mash to the apple press and mixing in chai spices, this cider is as cozy as it gets.
Got other favorites to add to the list? Share your favorite Maine beers and breweries to enjoy while the leaves change in the comments below!