Air date: Saturday, May 18
Guest: Fred Forsley
Host: Steve Woods (Stevoe)
Studio Contributor Debi Davis
Executive Producer: Mark Gould (Sharky)
Assistant Producer: Shannon Maguire
Maine native Fred Forsley is the founder and co-owner of The Shipyard Brewing Company, the largest brewery in Maine, 15th largest craft brewery in the country, according to the Brewers Association, and a national leader in the craft brew industry.
Forsley told Stevoe how he grew up in Gray, where many followed the polder mentality of life, doing for others and they would inturn do for you. Forsley also recalls the story of singing “99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall” the whole way through, twice, while waiting for his mom to pick him up in a snowstorm.
Shipyard grew out of the Kennebunkport Brewing Company and Federal Jack’s Restaurant and Brew Pub, which Forsley and his partner Alan Pugsley, began in 1992 as a way to turn around a troubled retail development in Kennebunk, Maine.
Two years after founding Federal Jack’s, Forsley and Pugsley launched Shipyard Brewing Co. in downtown Portland. The original space, 5,000 square feet, has been expanded several times throughout the years. It’s now 100,000 square feet of brewing, bottling, retail and administrative office space. The brewery recently moved some of its warehousing operations to another site in Portland, which has freed up enough space for future expansion. The brewery plans to turn out roughly 150,000 barrels of beer this year, and currently distributes its beer in 34 states.
The business has grown to encompass much more than beer. Forsley and his cousin Bruce Forsley, Shipyard’s director of sales and marketing and part owner of the brewery, also own restaurants, brewpubs, a line of soft drinks, and even a wine importer.
Forsley is also president of the Maine Brewers Guild, a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting the craft brewed industry in Maine.