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Major in Beer

"’Tis a Month Before Christmas" — a Maine craft beer holiday ode

by | Dec 16, 2020

photo/Tom Major

’Tis a month before Christmas, when frenzy sets in.
Retailers cry, “Let the shopping begin!”
Amazon floods you with glitz and with glamor;
Delete all their e-mails, tune out the clamor.

Repeat this refrain — be emphatic and vocal:
“Keep Maine unique, buy everything local!”
Hang hops-spangled stockings by your chimney flue;
They’ve got ’em in SoPo, where Island Dogs brew.

Need stuffers for stockings? See Shipyard’s tap handles,
Lip balm and lotion, playing cards and soy candles.
At the Yuletide festivities, bring out the Prelude.
The season’s for sharing, to hoard would be rude.  

And should Silent Nights get a little too quiet,
Get turnt up with Dub Stash, brewed by Liquid Riot.
Bier Cellar has Miller, the Champagne of Beer,
In foil-capped magnums to ring in the New Year.

Don’t like Miller? No need to be snooty!
Stay warm and stylish in a Bier Cellar hoodie.
Thank Robin and Alan for Geary’s redux;
We still have Hampshire when weather sucks.

Geary’s an O.G., like Santa himself,
So pick up some Pale for that jolly old elf.
If you want to replace Mr. Claus’s old pack,
They’ll sell you a tote of recycled malt sack.

Gritty’s Christmas Ale is an annual treat;
You can shop at their Brewtique down on Fore Street.
And when you’re invited to a holiday bash,
Bring North Sky and Curieux from ol’ Allagash.

Sixteen Counties is an all-Maine-grain beer,
Perfect for sharing with elves and reindeer.
Foundation’s on Portland-town’s northern periphery;
Stock up there for the Feast of Epiphany.

At Battery Steele, a neighbor of Foundation,
They host the happpiest Hanukkah celebration.
Austin Street’s there, and also in Bayside;
From one to the other is a merry sleigh ride.

From brewery to brewery, o’er snow let us glide,
To Goodfire! To Lone Pine! And Rising Tide!
Then Urban Farm, before we turn west,
Toward Banded, Bunker, Bissell, the rest!

Some may head south, to those Souls in their Barrels,
To drink the Dark Matter and sing Christmas carols.
We could hit southern breweries till January
And only run out when we reach Tributary.

No need to keep going to Portsmouth or Dover,
Get back to Sebago — you’ll find them all over.
Some may go north, where the snows deeply pile,
But only the intrepid will reach First Mile.

Don’t have the time to trek up to Fort Kent?
Maine Beer Co. has merch with that chic Freeport scent.
There are dozens of breweries along 95;
Supporting them now keeps our beer scene alive.

Flight Deck has masks of superior style;
Check out the one with Subhunter profile.
Or how ’bout a mask with the pine tree state flag?
Who wouldn’t love all this Maine brewery swag?

Snow may be fallin’, the Penobscot be freezin’,
But Orono’s got beach towels for balmier seasons,
And Tubular flip-flops look swell at the beach,
With a four-pack of Fruitful, sour ale brewed with peach.

In Norway, beer’s brewed by a master named Charlie.
His Triple Stack’s perfect for E. Scrooge or Marley.
German biers make for great singin’ and drinkin’;
Fill steins with Das Knackig from Brauerei Trinken.

Taste all the ales and shop all the shops.
Let’s celebrate life with some barley and hops!
When you greet other shoppers, be jolly but clear:
“Buy everything local, and to all, a good beer!”

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