2011-12-28 / Business

The Brewing of Baxter

Beer crafted in Lewiston consuming plenty of attention
By Troy R. Bennett, Times Record staff photographer


JON GREEN, originally from Brunswick, shepherds unfilled beer cans to the canning line at the Baxter Brewery in Lewiston. As “the cellar guy,” Green is in charge of the beer between the brewing and shipping stages. He oversees the harvesting of yeast, packing, filtration, canning, kegging and carbonating. JON GREEN, originally from Brunswick, shepherds unfilled beer cans to the canning line at the Baxter Brewery in Lewiston. As “the cellar guy,” Green is in charge of the beer between the brewing and shipping stages. He oversees the harvesting of yeast, packing, filtration, canning, kegging and carbonating.

BAXTER BREWING INTERIM HEAD BREWER Ben Law — a 1991 graduate of Brunswick High School — cleans a giant kettle after boiling a batch in Lewiston. Law was a dissertation shy of a Ph.d. in Latin literature when he decided to leave the academic life almost five years ago to become a full-time beer maker. “I was spending more time home-brewing than I was on my dissertation,” said Law. He was educated in brewing at the American Beer Guild in Vermont and is now working in the mill where both his grandparents and mother once worked. BAXTER BREWING INTERIM HEAD BREWER Ben Law — a 1991 graduate of Brunswick High School — cleans a giant kettle after boiling a batch in Lewiston. Law was a dissertation shy of a Ph.d. in Latin literature when he decided to leave the academic life almost five years ago to become a full-time beer maker. “I was spending more time home-brewing than I was on my dissertation,” said Law. He was educated in brewing at the American Beer Guild in Vermont and is now working in the mill where both his grandparents and mother once worked.

BREWER GEOFF NEWMAN adds buckets of hop pellets to a steaming batch of Stowaway IPA beer, after boiling, for aroma at Baxter Brewing in Lewiston. BREWER GEOFF NEWMAN adds buckets of hop pellets to a steaming batch of Stowaway IPA beer, after boiling, for aroma at Baxter Brewing in Lewiston.

BEER CANS are filled and carbonated at the Baxter Brewery in Lewiston. BEER CANS are filled and carbonated at the Baxter Brewery in Lewiston.

LUKE LIVINGSTON, 27, grew up in Auburn and founded Baxter Brewing last year at the Bates Mill Complex in Lewiston. The renovations started in June 2010 and the first shipment of the new beer went out seven months later. The brewery, which sends its three beers out in cans and kegs only, is set to ship 5,040 barrels this year — that’s 156,240 gallons. LUKE LIVINGSTON, 27, grew up in Auburn and founded Baxter Brewing last year at the Bates Mill Complex in Lewiston. The renovations started in June 2010 and the first shipment of the new beer went out seven months later. The brewery, which sends its three beers out in cans and kegs only, is set to ship 5,040 barrels this year — that’s 156,240 gallons.

JON GREEN stacks racks of Baxter Brewing’s Stowaway IPA as it comes off the canning line at the brewery in Lewiston. JON GREEN stacks racks of Baxter Brewing’s Stowaway IPA as it comes off the canning line at the brewery in Lewiston.

JASON HARRIS bundles cans of beer into six packs at the Baxter Brewery in Lewiston. All three of Baxter’s beers are sold either on draft or in cans, not bottles. The reasoning is threefold: cans are easier to recycle, cans keep beer fresher, longer, and cans can’t break like glass. JASON HARRIS bundles cans of beer into six packs at the Baxter Brewery in Lewiston. All three of Baxter’s beers are sold either on draft or in cans, not bottles. The reasoning is threefold: cans are easier to recycle, cans keep beer fresher, longer, and cans can’t break like glass.

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