Portland Beer Brewers Find Home in Portland After ‘Years of Preparation


PORTLAND – Three men with a passion for home-brewed beer opened a new destination for pint lovers earlier this year, just east of the iconic Arrigoni Bridge in Portland.

Concentric Brewing Co. is named for the feeling of the three co-owners of having a “common center”, according to the financial planner Dave Peichert, who directs the company with the firefighter of Middletown Drew France and the physiotherapist Brian Aida. They opened in February – during the global pandemic.

All three live in Portland.

Peichert said the common core of him and his business partners was a love for brewing beer. “It was a group of home brewers who discussed making a business plan and did it,” he said. “It’s years in the making, and we’ve had partners coming and going.”

The group began showcasing their beer at brewery parties statewide. After years of planning, the effort led to the opening Feb. 3 at 91 Main Street in Portland.

Opening during a pandemic, Peichert said, was a “pandemonium.” Business would be slow when expected to be busy and vice versa. He attributes this to the changing habits of people during COVID-19.

“Our first experience without masks and all of these restrictions was Memorial Day weekend – when it was around 50 degrees and it was raining,” he said. “So everyone was inside and we had a fantastic day. It was probably the second busiest day we’ve had since opening.

Fans of the process won’t be disappointed when they step into Concentric. With the right side of the space dedicated to brewing, customers will have a good view of where the magic happens.

“We wanted the valve room to show the production side, because people love the local and they love to see where things are made,” said Peichert. “It’s a 10 barrel brewing system.”

Piechert said he and the other owners were very receptive to customer feedback and “are always looking to change and have varieties.” He noted that Concentric’s IPA, The Core and his Portland Pilsner are fan favorites. They offer 13 types of beer and will keep trying new things, he said.

The hardest part of starting up, said Peichert, was securing a building. The group originally identified a location near Berlin train station and were even set up to get a grant from the city, but had to move away as they were never able to meet the owners.

“So we went to Middletown and met another owner (for a property) near Eli Cannons,” he said. But it also failed, Peichert said.

That’s when the three found the perfect location, he said, in a former Promold Plastics warehouse. There was the perfect amount of space and parking, however, the interior of the building was not ideal, Peichert said.

“When we got here it was all white,” he said. “We were able to tone it down with wood tones and painting the ceiling. We wanted a warm atmosphere. Many of the buildings we looked at were brick or new industrial buildings. “

Pierhert said much of the wood in the brewery, including that used to make the unique circular bar in the center of the tap room, is salvaged from the Thrall Farm in Windsor.

Peichert said he hopes to provide people with a warm and comfortable space to eat and drink. He noted that the brewery has partnered with Hot dogs in the hallways, a gourmet hot dog business in Portland, to sell food at the brewery.

“One of my favorites is the BLT dog, with bacon, lettuce and tomato with a drizzle of mayo on top,” he said. “There are a lot of toppings on these dogs that you wouldn’t expect – like bacon, peanut butter and jelly, or a Reuben hot dog.”

There are also plans to continue using the outdoor space they have available, Piechert said. For example, he would like to see people bring blankets and chairs on sunny days to sit on the grass or play cornhole.

“Come on, relax with friends, have a good beer and have fun,” he said.

For information, visit concentricbrewing.com and ConcentricBrewing on Facebook.


About Clayton Arredondo

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