If breweries were bands, Lone Pine is The Kings of Leon. An alternative that “starts underground, experiences organic growth while maintaining its artistic integrity,” said John Paul.
In one month (give or take a few setlist changes) Paul and partner Tom Madden are set to rock Portland’s brewstream. The friends, who grew up in Saco, and had a band in high school, have secured a loan, rented a pink industrial building on Anderson Street, and await tanks for a February opening.
When Lone Pine opens across from Urban Farm Fermentory, they will be the fifth brewery in East Bayside. The “Yeast Bayside” moniker is starting to stick.
Meanwhile, across town, another industrial zone is getting a booze infusion. This week Bissell Brothers, the popular craft brewer located on Industrial Avenue, announced that Thompson’s Point will be its new digs later this year. The move means “a significant increase in production capacity, tap room size, and retail efficiency, while allowing us to keep the Bissell Brothers spirit, experience, and commitment to providing fresh beer for Maine intact.”
Owners Peter and Noah Bissell are Milo natives whose beers such as Substance, Lux and Angels with Filthy Souls are cult hits (they also could be rock ditties). With a winery and distillery planned for Thompson’s Point, the former industrial spit has an impressive year ahead. Stay thirsty!
Last week Smart Asset dubbed Maine’s largest he best city for beer drinkers in the USA. Now that there is a brewery for every 4,000 residents, expect even more brewers to catch the bug.
Back in Bayside, Madden, a certified cicerone (akin to a wine sommelier) is adding a twist to the family business.
It was in his father’s liquor store — Madden Beverages in Saco — between aisles of home brew supplies and groaning shelves of craft beer that Madden drafted a plan to open his own brewery.
The home brewer was teaching classes and giving tips to would-be brewers coming in for supplies. He finally said “enough is enough” and threw his hat into the ring. Lone Pine will specialize in “American style craft beer.” First up is Portland Pale Ale made with Maine malts from Blue Ox Malthouse in Lisbon Falls and West Coast hops.
The 29 year olds see Lone Pine as a test kitchen and their “high quality” beer a gateway to better American Ale. “America doesn’t really have a beer style,” said Madden. His partner, who worked for Sony Music pushing and breaking brands is helping write a new song.
“Beer is a lot like musical genres, there’s folk, punk rock, heavy metal,” said Madden … Lone Pine enters a crowded marketplace ready to turn up the volume.