Orono Brewing Company popped some bubbly on New Year's Eve, but it was the kind made with malts and hops and served on draft. The brewery officially opened the doors to its tasting room on December 31, welcoming revelers with a Kölsch and a cream ale poured on Nitro (think Guinness consistency) in addition to more expected fare like a stout and an IPA. The company said certain beers will be permanent fixtures while new recipes will be brewed each month.
Asa Marsh-Sachs is the head brewer of the operation, which is beneath Verve Burritos at 20 Main St. Verve is owned by Orono Brewing co-owners Abe Furth, Heather Furth, and Mark Horton; the three also run nearby Woodman's Bar and Grill.
Orono's tasting room, or "Draught Room," is open seven days a week, a rarity for Maine breweries. The large space has a copper bar top, tables made from "black iron and 160 year old planks from a historic downtown building," and even an outdoor extension for the warmer month(s). A limited bar menu is available, with food provided by Woodman's—also the first bar to receive Orono's beer. Snacks include Macaroni and Cheese, Pretzels made with spent grain from the brewing process, and a few varieties of flatbread.
Maine has dozens of visitable tasting rooms and brew pubs, such that's it's hard to keep track of them all. See what the last one from 2014 (but certainly not the last in the state) is up to during its extensive opening hours Monday - Wednesday 3:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m., Thursday - Friday 3:00 p.m. - 12:00 p.m., Saturday 12:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m., and Sunday 12:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.