About a year or so ago, a longtime Mainer friend of mine informed me of a little brewer in Down East Maine that I ought not to miss out on. Spending the past few weeks in the doldrums of Dover-Foxcroft in Central Maine, I’d grown accustomed to the bite of a cold wind, an impending degree of snowfall, and the blinkered terrain of limited craft beer offerings. A a few days of unremitting cold, wind, and flurries, the weather finally halted and I set off with my father to the seaport village of Belfast to encounter the offerings of Marshall Wharf Brewery.
Established in 2007, Marshall Wharf has more than filled the void that now that Belfast Bay Brewing Company left (ShipyardBrewing now produces the brand out of town). Spearheaded by craft beer visionary David Carlson, Marshall Wharf has turned to a team of brewers headed by former Belfast Bay brewer Dan McGovern to put forth some of Maine’s finest spectrum of delectable brews. Here, a stone’s throw from the harbor by Belfast’s charming colonial downtown, Marshall Wharf’s handy 7-barrel brewhouse roils forth some flavorsome cutting edge beer tipples.
At Marshall Wharf, we met with the amicable Carlson, production brewer Jared Mahrunic, and a staff of clued-up and inspired folks offer a range of modern and traditional beer styles that appease both the furrow browed fisherman, and the progenies like those who subscribe to Brewpublic’s venturesome outlook. About an hour-and-a-half drive where I’d been staying in the shiretown of Piscataquis County, Belfast’s lone brewery announced the New Year’s release of a special barrel aged Cant Dog Pale Ale constituted of 25% barrel aged beer and 75% fresh ale, exercising a portion of two year old esterous brew laid down in twelve year old Elijah Craig bourbon casks. In addition to Cant Dog, Marshall Wharf will be releasing two other bourbon-aged ales.
Carlson, obliged my aspiration to sample this spectacle slated to be unveiled to the public on New Year’s Day 2011 by offering up a taster of this divine potion. Rampant with compounded notes of caramel, vanilla, wood, and bourbon, the beer, was by some standards young, yet immediately gratifying. “Barrel aging has become a hot trend” says Carlson. “ We had the opportunity to get some decent bourbon barrels. And though blending is new to us, we’re quite pleased with the result. And it is easy to taste why. Carlson says that Marshall Wharf has served beer enthusiasts from New Hampshire and Massachusetts who are becoming more and more aware of the beers at his quaint 400 square foot brewery. Well known Maine craft brew outposts such as Novare Res and the Great Lost Bear in Portland, Maine have opened tap space to Marshall Wharf’s patent biddings.
Unlike many traditional Maine craft breweries, Marshall Wharf steers clear of exhausting English yeast varietals like Ringwood and Nottingham, and have opted for a mellifluous and fruity Chico ale strain while tinkering with divergent Belgian sorts. Next door at Carlson’s Three Tides Restaurant and Bar, a Marshall Wharf’s inventiveness runs the gamut of savor with about 25 mainstay, migratory, and chance-taking pickings.
A sampler tray at Three Tides exposed the likes of Read More…
Posted under beer news, Beer personalities, beer releases, places to drink beer
This post was written by Angelo on December 30, 2010