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Lunch - Maine Beer Company

Not Rated.
LunchLunch

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

3,146 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,146
Reviews: 528
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 8.45%
Wants: 787
Gots: 425 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Maine Beer Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our “East Coast” version of a West Coast-style IPA. Intense hop flavors and aromas of tropical and citrus fruits and pine dominate. A subtle malt sweetness brings the beer into balance.

(Beer added by: Jason on 05-10-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,146 | Reviews: 528 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of woodychandler
4.06/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Yeah, I CAN hear my detractors now - "Oh, Brother Woody, you seem to be drinking (and reviewing) a lot of bottled beers of late. Have you finally gone off of CANs?" F**k no, Daddy-O! It is just that bottles keep showing up, unbidden, and while I am not adverse, they do get in the way of the mission. My buddy, Justin, with whom I am visiting State Line Liquors in Elkton, MD tomorrow, was just up in Maine and brought this back for me with the admonition, "Drink this sooner, rather than later." What, like Alice in Wonderland? "Drink Me!" I know about the results, but I am plunging ahead. I love Maine, having spent the best summer of my life there in 1990 while the infant USS Normandy (CG-60) was in the Portland shipyard.

From the bottle: "Do what's right."; "Drink this beer fresh."; "Drink within 90 days of stamped born on date [091013 23]. Enjoy this beer fresh. Hoppy beers do not age well."; "Bottle Conditioned Pour carefully A fine layer of yeast is on the bottom of this bottle. Please chill upright. Enjoy this beer fresh. Hoppy beers do not age well."; "Lunch is a special whale that has been spotted off the Maine coast since 1982. She has what looks like a bite taken out of her fin which adds to her unique character. We dedicate this beer to her determination and persistence."; "At Maine Beer Company we strive to produce artisinal ales that are unique and full of fresh flavors. We are persistant [sic] in trying to improve our beers, so they may change slightly over time, but who could argue with that? Keep on swimming!"; "What We Are All About [-] Making the best beer that we possibly can. We purchase Green-e certified energy credits for all electricity. We donate our used grain, yeast & grain bags to local farmers. We donate 1% of all sales to environmental non-profits."

I sent one of these to the lovely JenRay, but I have never partaken until now. I seemed to be getting a lot of head until I managed to come to my senses and look at the verbiage "Bottle Conditioned" printed on the label.

Whoops! S**t! I immediately backed off, sheepishly. The ex-Old Lady really took me to task in July during my visit because of my propensity to using a heavy hand when pouring my beers. I try to be gentle with clearly-marked bottles and CANs, but otherwise, I will upturn the container and let it all spill out, hence my recent disaster in which some overflow got into the keyboard and the whole assembly had to be replaced.

I had no idea as to how to proceed. Half of the beer was still in the bottle with an unknown amount of turbidity while the other half sat in the glass, awaiting my next move. I am proceeding in situ. The massive, rocky, tawny head had fallen, leaving jackhammer-worthy lacing in its wake. Why a jackhammer? That is what it will take to remove the lacing, eventually. The color was an oh-so-slightly hazy deep amber (SRM = between 7 and 9, but without knowing precisely what 8 looks like, I am not assigning that number). Nose smelled like a snowy morning in a Maine evergreen forest!

A former girlfriend and I once took a heavy-duty sleeping bag outside in Bath, ME during a snowfall to do our thing and this was evocative of that time. Baby, I'm gonna eat your Lunch!

Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium, but the subtleness of the hops was uncanny. They were present, but not in-your-face. It was like listening to cats getting it on - you know that they are out there, but damned if you can find them to make them stop.

This was VERY mellow, man. It was like drinking hops tea, which I have done. The whole world was beginning to smooth out and I was beginning to contemplate calling some of the local ladies who might dig partaking of ye olde water pipe and then indulging in whatever action may result thereafter. They are legion and I am known for being a good host.

The first pour was now spent and so I pulled out a new glass to try and reboot my self-made disaster area. Can you say "Gentle", boys and girls? I was more gentle than I have been with anyone or anything in quite some time.

Nope. S**t! This would have been my secondary pour if I had been paying attention in the first place. The turbidity was too much to overcome and I had what looked like a glass of fresh-pressed apple cider. Dang! It is not as if I had not been warned, either. My students' desire to overlook directions may be rubbing off on me, further proof that I need to get out of teaching. Here, the nose had a musty, cider-y quality with the hops just playing along. The mouthfeel was medium and the taste became much spicier than it had been. Nice! It was a peppery intensity, low on Scovill units, but still very peppery. Finish was now as dry as alum sprinkled down my throat. Phew!

Okay. I am f**k-up, but the next time that I am in Vacationland, I want to give this another shot.

woodychandler, Nov 09, 2013
Photo of yourefragile
4.03/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 5/18/11, poured into a nonic, thanks Conor!

Appearance is halfway between clear and hazed, dark copper, almost brownish. Massive, airy bubbly off white head. Excellent retention and sparse lacing. Bready and piney aroma with an appreciable amount of tropical sweetness, but that's not the focus.
Medium thick, light carbonation, syrupy body with a slick, sweet finish that is only mildy bitter or dry. Flavor is dominated by biscuit and caramel malt with some resin and pulpy citrus in the finish with some dry pine hops. Very well balanced and drinkable, but a little too sweet for my taste.

yourefragile, Jun 03, 2011
Photo of corby112
4.05/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to Sidebordz for sending this bottle my way. Bottled on 9/15/11.

Pours a hazy, dark golden orange color with a half finger white foam head that slowly fades into a lasting ring. Streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

Dank, earthy hop aroma with lots of resinous oils and grassy, floral notes. Hints of soil-y pine needle countered by some tropical and citrus fruit notes. Subtle malt presence with some Graham and biscuit but the nose of this beer is dominated by the fresh hops.

Medium bodied, but on the fuller end, with a blast of dry, bitter hops up front that linger over the malt backbone into a sticky, dry finish. Floral with lots of earthy pine flavor and sticky hop oils countered by a subtle citrus/tropical fruit presence. Hints of grapefruit and orange peel balance out the bitterness without overpowering them. Towards the end of the palate, the malt backbone is evident with subtle toffee, caramel and biscuit. Really well balanced and easy to drink with only slight boozy heat in the finish. Another solid offering from Maine Beer Co.

corby112, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of weeare138
4.25/5  rDev -3%

weeare138, Dec 01, 2013
Photo of drewone
4.25/5  rDev -3%

drewone, Apr 16, 2012
Photo of orangesol
4.25/5  rDev -3%

orangesol, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of stakem
3.55/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle into a snifter. Bottled date of 10/14/12 puts this at the freshest Maine Beer Co offering I have had at only about a month old. The brew appears a hazed golden copper color with nearly 4 fingers of mostly white, somewhat yellowish stained head. As the cap slowly fades, it leaves patchy to webby lacework on the glass. A swirl effortlessly revives a finger back on top.

The aroma of this brew is hoppy with fruity citrus elements that blend into strong herbs and grass. A bit of cheese and sulfur are also present mingling with the fruity elements. Grapefruit comes to mind here with a hint of pine and dank qualities.

The taste is predominantly citrus, pulp, zest and rinds of grapefruit and oranges. The hop flavoring comes first, with the bitter rind elements coming in after the fact. As the bitterness rests on the tongue, it gets to be quite herbal and shifts away from the citrus and fruit aspects. A bit of toasty grain is present along with a soft touch of neutral spirit-like alcohol. Across the back are some hints of minerals and more sulfur.

This is a medium bodied brew with ample carbonation. I had high expectations for this one based off of it's freshness and how I enjoyed their pale ale at 3 months old. Unfortunately, this was a bit of a let down and I think I give the nod to the pale ale over this ipa. While it is decent and without fault, I felt it came up a little short and was lackluster. I would pass on spending $8 for 500 ml again in the future.

stakem, Nov 06, 2012
Photo of dbrauneis
4.1/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy dark golden yellow to pale golden orange in color. The beer has a medium sized patch of large soapy bubbles that reduces to a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Minimal amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate amounts of caramel malts smells with strong aromas of pineapple/tropical hops, grapefruit/citrus hops, and just a touch of pine hops.

T: There is a light flavor of caramel malt sweetness upfront with much larger hops flavors - the primary hop flavors are passionfruit and grapefruit. Moderate amounts of bitterness that does not linger.

M: Light to medium bodied with light amounts of carbonation (almost completely flat). Slightly thin but that might be due to the lack of carbonation.

O: Seems like the cap might not have been perfectly sealed - especially since other reviewers seem to indicate that the beer was more carbonated than I experienced. Great hop flavors and this beer is very enjoyable. I found it easy to drink and would like to get another to check out the carbonation.

dbrauneis, Jul 23, 2012
Photo of barleywinefiend
4.18/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a hazed deep yellowish orange color with good carbonation and head retention leaving a small white cap, nice bubbles and moderate lacing

S: Not very empowering on the nose. I do get some light citrus notes on the nose.

T: A very subtle taste, not what I was expecting at all. I was expecting a big hop fwd IPA but this is a balanced treat. Initial taste leaves some citrus; light orange peel, some grass with a light caramel backbone. Smooth, not overly bitter, just well rounded. Finish has a light hop bite, almost no booze with a grassy citrus, floral finish

M: Medium bodied, balanced, well carbonated.

O: Well done! I would have this for breakfast, lunch, dinner and a midnight snack.

barleywinefiend, Oct 24, 2012
Photo of Billolick
4.35/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16 ounce bottle

Pours lightly hazed medium amber, top notch medium tan head...Impressive staying power! Another great looking beer from these guys, even a blob of dense meraingue staying behind seemingly forever...loads of thick sheeting, window panes of lacing..nice

Moderatly citric, hopped up nose.

Fresh and fragrant, with notes of lemony hop goodness, light tropical fruits, maple sweetness and bready notes to balance out this stunner...How come I have not heard more about this brewery?!? and where can I get more of their brews?!?

Billolick, Jun 07, 2011
Photo of akorsak
4/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 500 mL (or so) bottle, thanks Deuane.

A: The IPA is hazy, a muddy orange color laden with thickness. Opaque as a result. A finger of head, off-white barely.

S: Leafy citrus aromas with caramel to balance out. From January 2012, the bottle still has a strong hop aroma. As with Peeper and Zoe, the big hops are balanced but the maltiness.

T: Plenty of flavor. The hops are lively, leafy and citrusy with lush tropical fruits beside the grapefruit. The flavors are strong but they never ruin the ale; the caramel is strong, rich backbone for the ale. At 7%, the ale doesn't get too strong either. The finish brings up the hops, a citrusy end that packs a punch.

M: Even a few months old, it still rocks. Ample hoppiness, but the good biting kind that has more fruits than it knows what to do with. Quite nice.

akorsak, May 01, 2012
Photo of duceswild
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

duceswild, Jul 08, 2012
Photo of ejimhof
2.75/5  rDev -37.2%

ejimhof, Nov 26, 2012
Photo of BARFLYB
4.35/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bottle into some glasses.

This came out nice. Lunch is a copper bronzish color with a nice billowy bright white head with great retention and stick. Nice legs on this one.

Smell is bright with citrusy pungent hops exploding with ripe mango, grapefruit and the like. The malt really does not make a whimper here. Some pine trailing the tropic pack.

Unlike the nose, the pine and oily resiny hops come out to play in taste and clash with the tropics. It's a great battle though and Im torn. Anywho. Pine up front, pineapple, grapefruit, resinous hops, and I guess malt?

Feel is light bodied and dry going down and there is a very nice amount of bitterness all the way through. It's carbed up plenty and overall, Lunch lets you know that it's there.

Great stuff. Really impressed with the beer here. Not the most balanced IPA out there, alot of clashing going on, but hey, this is from the East Coast and we are not known for our IPA's. I can seriously say that this is worth a go, if fresh.

BARFLYB, Feb 06, 2012
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Churchkey in D.C.

Bottle date 5/28/2013

Three day old bottle. Über fresh. The beer is clear and yellow with a small white head. The aroma brings a bouquet of citric hops. Absolutely delicious. This beer has been on my radar for some time and it definitely delivers. A showcase for hops. Clean and refreshing with a lovely finish. Outstanding.

Huhzubendah, Jun 01, 2013
Photo of Wasatch
4.25/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to portia99 for this brew.

Bottle Dated: 102511

Pours a very nice hazy dark golden amber color, very nice carbonation, with a nice two-finger creamy off-white head, with some very nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is hoppy, with some nice malt notes, nice citrus note, with some pineyness. The taste is slightly sweet, hoppy, with a nice malt balance, nice citrus note, and some very slight pine notes. Medium body, with a nice dry/bitterness finish. This is another very tasty brew from MBC, always a joy to try these. Thanks Bill!

Wasatch, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of Stinkypuss
4.24/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a pale orangeish color with a bit of haze. Lace is left all along the glass. The aroma has pineapple, pine, grapefruit and orange. A zesty, citrusy nose.

The taste has big citrus, mango, and pineapple notes with a pine and herb backing and a well balanced bitterness. Ample toasty, caramel like malts have plenty of residual sweetness to even everything out.

Soft, medium carbonation on a medium bodied ale. The finish is nice and fruity and semi dry with a hop bite.

Overall this is a very impressive IPA from the folks at Maine Brewing. It didn't spoil my appetite for Dinner, but that, like so many days' meals, will have to wait.

Stinkypuss, Aug 07, 2014
Photo of ppoitras
4.68/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

16.9oz bottle purchased as a single from somewhere localish.

Poured into an imperial pint, formed a 1" off-white head over the slightly cloudy amber brew. Dense head lasts and lasts, with frothy dwelling lace. Aroma is pine hops skank, in a good way.

Taste is sweet out of the gate, citrus in the middle, with a piney close. Mouthfeel is wow smooth, and drinkability is incredible. If anyone asked me, I would certainly do lunch.

ppoitras, Apr 17, 2012
Photo of Mebuzzard
4/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this at Novare Res (or whatever it's called) in Portland. I had it for lunch, of course.

Pours a very nice looking beer. I mean, yowza...nice looking. Vibrant amber, somewhat thick, somewhat thin. Right in the middle.

Aroma is a bit weak. Pine and citrus, some light caramel and toasted bread. Easily overcome by surrounding smells from the beer garden I'm in.

Taste has more umpf. The malt backbone is subtle and provides the hops to come forth. They don't go too far, though. I'm sure if it's the malt amounts that pull back the hops, or the hop bill. It just doesn't pop. It's like an APA without the malt profile. But then again, the abv at 7% suggests that it has adequate amounts of malt for the IPA style. So, this is an unassuming, yet very very drinkable IPA

I'll have to have some more to find out what's going on. Keeping in mind that this was at a bar...perhaps it's a bit old?

Mebuzzard, Aug 18, 2011
Photo of BillRoth
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

BillRoth, Jul 11, 2013
Photo of brandoman63
4/5  rDev -8.7%

brandoman63, Mar 17, 2014
Photo of mdaschaf
4.6/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a bottle of this when I was up in Boston. Actually had to go to a few stores before I found it. Review from notes.

A: Pours a clear golden/amber color with a 1.5 finger white head on top. Very nice retention with random bits of foamy lace on the sides.

S: Wow. One of the most intense grapefruit aromas I have come across. There is also a bit of orange and orange peel as well as a little bit of grass and light pine. Really strong and extremely inviting. One of the best smelling IPAs I have had.

T: Lots of citrus, with the grapefruit again leading the way.Faint pine and some caramel malt balance things slightly. The aroma is a bit stronger than the flavor profile, but it is still very tasty. The citrus fruits are very juicy. There is a sharp bitterness on the finish.

M: Medium bodied with nice carbonation. It is sticky and a bit oily with a bitter and dry finish.

O: Again, MBC puts out a beer that I really like. Hard to pick a favorite, but this one is really good. A west coast IPA made in Maine! Need to get more next time I go up north.

mdaschaf, Aug 10, 2011
Photo of John_M
4.43/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at RSVP the other day. Given all the reviews and chatter about it on BA, I just had to try a super fresh bottle (so I'm drinking it now in my hotel). Lunch pours an apricot orange amber color with good head retention and lacing. This beer has the look of a serious IPA. In case there's any doubt however, just take one whiff, and you're transported to IPA heaven. Yummy!!! I get a huge aroma of peach, orange citrus, apricot and pine. Incredibly, this beer does not smell at all sweet/malty or boozy, and I just can't wait to take my first sip. The flavor profile replicates the nose in this well crafted IPA, and I'm impressed by the amount of hoppy bitterness I get in the finish. There's actually quite a bit of tropical fruit in this beer, but there's more than enough hoppy bitterness to counter the sweetness, leading to a long, dry, hoppy finish. There's also a slight dank flavor aspect as well to this beer, which only enhances the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a long, dry, bitter finish. It's a bit light at the end, but that's splitting hairs.... this is just delicious. I get a slight sense of the 7% alcohol in this beer, but otherwise the alcohol is very well integrated into the flavor profile.

Yummm.... outside of Allagash's outstanding interlude, I'm not sure I can recall having another beer from Maine I've enjoyed as much as I've enjoyed lunch. Now I'm wishing I picked up more than the 3 bottles I purchased at RSVP.

John_M, May 24, 2011
Photo of biegaman
4.43/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lunch has a light enough complexion to assume that malts should not be an issue where this hop-bomb is concerned. Its golden colour is clean but doesn't allow a whole lot of transparency, although its bubbles appear as if under a spotlight. No matter how low the beer gets, its head stays thick and perfectly level. The lacing sticks too.

The beer smells blissfully tropical right from the pour, but swirling really puts the match to the powder keg: pineapple, papaya and mango explode. And it's loud. There's more fruit in this aroma than in any of products you'd find at Bath and Body Works (which you know is saying a lot if you've ever walked within 20 feet of that store).

Fortunately the aroma made a promise that the flavor would keep. Notes of apricot and lemon rind linger in the tastebuds like heavy fruit hanging from a thin branch. Sugary pineapple, blood orange, and bitter grapefruit are plentiful while just a hint of toasted bread is all we can gather of the malts. Perhaps a wee dab of caramel too.

Similar IPAs can swamp the palate with devastating bitterness, or become boozy and disjointed with warmth, but this is an IPA that has no worm at its core. It has all the requisite flavors but maintains an easy, approachable character. It doesn't numb or shred the palate but rather washes it in a refreshingly acidic citrusy juiciness.

Lunch is named after a whale and, indeed, it is in fact what the beer geeks on this site would call a 'whale' (rare beer, difficult to attain). The bottle I just reviewed was almost 3 months old before I was fortunate enough to get my hands on it, but it was every bit as good as others hyped it up to be. I can only imagine how much more wonderful it must be fresh... it might just be worth trading a kidney for.

biegaman, Apr 20, 2012
Photo of smakawhat
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Much thanks to ToasterChef! Bottled Jan 24th 2011, ooo she's a freshy!

A real nice creamy and very nicely uniform micro pin sized bubbles, snow white and is three fingers deep. Body color is a bit bronze and orange, slightly murky but still real nice looking color, and lots of clumpy lacing while drinking.

Great creamy smell off this, woody pine like hop, small malt presence. Earthy, dense, deep.

Palate hits with a nice match of the nose. Woody like pine, but an incredibly soft body. Creamy palate, dry rooftop mouth on the finish. Very palate drying after much drinking. Not much citrus feel, perhaps some very faint orange in the finish after awhile.

Overall, it's a little one dimensional, slightly raw feeling too, but what a dimension it is.

smakawhat, Feb 07, 2012
Lunch from Maine Beer Company
97 out of 100 based on 3,146 ratings.