After a year of writing a beer blog and drinking my way through New England, it occurred to me that the great state of Maine is fertile with good beer right now. And it’s only getting stronger with new breweries opening up every week.
So when I saw the NCAA Men’s Basketball bracket, I thought, I wonder if I could find 64 Maine beers to pit against each other. I did some research, some math, and discovered that, yup, we live in a state with some beer prowess. Thus was born the Maine Madness Beer Tournament. (Click here to join the Facebook page and vote!)
Week one (March 24 – March 28): Round One of the tournament. Starting on Tuesday, we will vote on Maine Ales. Wednesday will be the Dark and Strong category of Stouts, Porters, Blacks, and Strong Ales. Thursday will be the seasonals. And Friday will be my favorite category: the IPA’s.
Week two (March 31 – April 4): Round Two, Round Three, Round Four, and Round Five. I’m guessing there will be a lot of upsets. By the time the Sweet Sixteen (Round Three) comes around, I’m sure we’ll all be surprised by the way the field looks. So by the time the Elite Eight (Round Four) rolls around, it will be anyone’s game. And when we get to the Final Four (Round Five), our heads will explode with amazement at who’s left and which favorites are gone.
Week Three (April 7): Championship Game. This will coincide with the NCAA national championship game. As the NCAA crown’s a champion, so will Maine crown a beer champion. I’m so friggin’ excited.
The Challenge to You
I challenge each of you to try a new Maine beer every round that you’ve never had before. Doing so enhances your appreciation for Maine beer, bolsters our local economy, and strengthens the unique culture of our state. For example, today when we vote on Maine Ales, I’m going to go out and find Marshall Wharf Ace Hole Ale. I’ve been meaning to try it, and this is the perfect occasion to do so. Vote for the beers you love, and buy Maine beers you’ve never tried before.
Remember, this is a celebration of Maine beer. Let’s celebrate!