LEWISTON-AUBURN, ME—Baxter Brewing Co., the acclaimed all-cans craft brewery in Lewiston, ME, that was the first of its kind in New England, will be available throughout New Hampshire beginning next month. “There is already a terrific craft beer culture in New Hampshire,” said company founder and CEO, Luke Livingston. “We’ve wanted to be in the state ever since we first moved beyond Maine into Massachusetts, but until now we hadn’t been able to make enough beer to even supply our existing markets.” Recent new construction has expanded the brewery’s capacity by more than 400%, and “so at last, we can supply our nearest neighbors,” Livingston said.
Baxter currently produces three year-round varieties plus three unique seasonal offerings, and all will be made available to retailers, restaurants and bars throughout New Hampshire by Bayside Distributing, of Brentwood, NH and Amoskeag Beverages of Bow, NH. “We are thrilled to add Baxter’s beers to our list,” said Chris Eng, Brentwood’s Craft and Import Manager. “Lots of New Hampshire people are already fans of Baxter because we travel from the Berkshires to Bar Harbor. Now we won’t have to cross the borders to get these great beers! We’re eager to help everyone in New Hampshire get easy access to the brand.” Said Livingston of the cross-border move, “We’re very excited to join such titans of the craft beer industry as Smuttynose, and our friends from Maine, like Rising Tide, Sebago and Allagash.”
Livingston mentioned that Baxter’s policy of packaging only in kegs and cans is well suited to New Hampshire lifestyles and values. “Cans are the most environmentally friendly form of packaging there is,” he said, “and they are completely portable – they can go to mountaintops, to the lake, to ski slopes, to the woods.” And because cans prevent any contamination from either light or oxygen, beer will stay fresh longer in a can than in a bottle.
Named the Best New Brewery in the U.S. for 2011 by the beverage industry’s BevNET Magazine, demand for Baxter’s beers has exceeded supply since its inception. But the brewery’s recent expansion increased total capacity to more than 33,000 barrels/year. “We really appreciate our fans’ patience while we’ve been ramping up, and we’re thrilled that we can now satisfy thirsty folks in Maine and Massachusetts and also come to New Hampshire.” Baxter has been deeply involved with philanthropic, sports, and economic development efforts in all its existing markets, and plans to be actively engaged throughout New Hampshire as well. A series of release parties and tastings is planned to roll out over the course of the next couple of months.
Baxter’s year-round varieties include Pamola Xtra Pale Ale, Amber Road amber ale, and the flagship Stowaway IPA. The first seasonal beer arriving in New Hampshire right away will be Phantom Punch Winter Stout, to be followed by Summer Swelter summer ale, and Hayride Autumn Ale at the appropriate turns of the calendar. All have been recognized by industry and popular press throughout New England, and until the recent expansion, demand had exceeded supply by nearly three-fold. The brewery is housed in the historic Bates Mill, in Lewiston, Maine, and has become a destination for beer lovers from all 50 states, and more than three dozen countries from all across the globe. “But starting next month, Granite Staters won’t have to travel beyond their corner store to enjoy Baxter,” Livingston said.