It's Not Easy Being Green

Location of Origin: 130 Mill Street, Bates Mill, Lewiston, ME 04240, USA
Date Established: 2010
Category: Independent, Craft, Microbrewery with Very Limited Distribution (ME, MA only), Only Cans and Kegs

In the snooty world of fine wines, corked bottles are the only way to go. Screw caps, boxes, or even plastic corks are all abominations. Craft beer enthusiasts, many of them snooty themselves, share similar opinions about canned beer. Beer has been stored in casks. Then bottles. Then nothing else, since nothing after the bottle "really worked out." Beer was first canned in tin cylinders in the 1930s when the era of Prohibition ended in 1933. The can was lined with a plastic or waxy substance which helped to prevent negative chemical reactions between the liquid (such as acidic sodas) and the tin (later aluminum). This measure wasn't perfect, and as a result, the only producers of beer using cans versus bottles were large scale, commercial macrobreweries which were commonly viewed as crafters of lackluster beer. Ergo, in the 60s, 70s, and 80s, generally only "bad" beers went in cans, until the craft beer industry turned over a new leaf, so to speak. Going green has become a very popular thing to do for grassroots marketing, a tactic used by most smaller breweries, especially craft breweries, including Baxter of Lewiston, ME.
Welcome then, to the craft beer industry's first brewer to can their entire product line. This measure, along with offsetting their entire operational power consumption by way of purchasing American wind power, recycling waste heat, using energy efficiency building retrofits, refurbishing old equipment and their building, treating their water before releasing it to the sewage system, and composting solid waste, has come under fire by some craft beer enthusiasts who continue to stand by the bottle 'till death. Their beer cans have been produced with over 70% recycled materials, and compared to bottles, cans use less energy to recycle; it takes less energy to make cans; cans cost less and use less fuel to transport; and they're typically recycled more than twice as much as bottles - 75% of all US bottles end up in landfills. And modern cans are actually sometimes viewed as being better than bottles for two primary reasons: the aluminum is more airtight (than a cap) and lets in no UV radiation, while bottles can let in a large percentage of it, depending on the color of the bottle; cans are also lined with a state of the art polymer which prevents the beer from interacting with the metal, so no metallic or plasticy tastes will occur. So maybe this humble, young, and innovative brewery is doing the world two services: helping out Patrick Polar Bear, and teaching the rest of us that cans are just as good as bottles for transporting beer. Only time (and sales performance) will tell.

Reviewed Beer from Baxter Brewing Company

5-13-12 - Stowaway IPA

All rated Beer from Baxter Brewing Company

5-30-15 - Summer Swelter Ale - 2.86, Herbed/Spiced Beer, 4.70%
2-14-15 - Phantom Punch Winter Stout - 3.22, American Foreign/Export Stout, 6.80%
9-13-14 - Tarnation California-Style Lager - 2.87, California Common/Steam Beer, 5.30%

7-12-13 - Pamola Xtra Pale Ale - 3.17, American Pale Ale, 4.90%

5-12-12 - Stowaway IPA - 3.48, American IPA, 6.90%
Please see review above.