6 min 53 sec

Bartender Brews Up Brewpub Tour Biz

After being asked for brewery recommendations over and over, this bartender turns an old school bus into a Maine attraction for beer drinkers.
Beer Service

Subscribe Now For A Free Five Step Tutorial

What It's About

Hop on board this Brewpub tour bus ... it's on a roll!

Business Model
Skills Required
Organization & Marketing
Profit Potential

Words of Wisdom

Whether you're starting your business or in the process of growing it, don't be afraid to seek out help. Here's Zach; "If I could do anything differently I would have hired a branding agency, lawyer and accountant from the start."

Fun Fact

In English pubs, ale is ordered by pints and quarts… So in old England , when customers got unruly, the bartender would yell at them ‘Mind your pints and quarts, and settle down.’It’s where we get the phrase ‘mind your P’s and Q’s’

Notes from Chris

Episode 1109

If enough people ask you the same question, it might be a sign from the universe that you’ve found your moneymaking idea. That's what happened to Zach Poole while working at a pub in Portland, Maine. Customers kept asking him what breweries they should visit—and after answering the question dozens of times, something clicked. There should be a tour for these people.

That was when the idea for Zach's side hustle, the Maine Brew Bus, was born. These tours take guests around some of the best breweries in Portland, with Zach serving as both tour guide and designated driver.

Let’s look under the hood.

The Brew Bus tours are all-inclusive, with a flat fee that varies depending on the tour, but is typically around $70. The fee covers transport, the guide, and tastings at each brewery the bus visits. Depending on the tour, the bus will stop at three to five breweries, distilleries, and wineries. This takes place over the course of half a day, and some tours include activities like attending local hockey games.

By 2016, the Maine Brew Bus had ten staff members, and had taken more than 5,000 people on their tours.

As the business grew, the Portland brewery scene grew as well. That meant more beer to go around, and more bus tours popping up in Portland. But for Zach, it was important to never see these other tours as competitors that he needed to tear down. He was glad to see the idea grow in popularity, and went out of his way to help fellow operators.

This genorous attitude has only further increased his reputation on the Maine beer scene. In March of 2017, the Maine Brew Bus acquired Maine Beer Tours, a similar tour business that doesn't use buses. Some of their tours are on foot, on bikes, or even by boat. This allowed Zach to offer a whole new set of tours without setting them all up himself.

By 2019, the empire had grown from one bus to three, with thirteen drivers and guides, and raked in $600,000 in sales. Zach now runs the Maine Brew Bus full-time, but on a flexible schedule, which allows him to spend more time with his family.

As for what's next? Well, marijuana is now legal in the state, so the Maine Cannabus is one idea...


  • Maine Brew Bus: Learn more about Zach and the Maine Brew Bus tours at his website.


Inspiration is good; inspiration combined with action is better. Now get back to work!

Yours in the revolution,


Download 2020 episodes: JAN | FEB | MAR | APR | MAY | JUN | JUL | AUG

Download 2019 episodes: JAN | FEB | MAR | APR | MAY | JUN | JUL | AUG | SEP | OCT | NOV | DEC

Download 2018 episodes: JAN | FEB | MAR | APR | MAY | JUN | JUL | AUG | SEP | OCT | NOV | DEC

Download 2017 episodes: JAN | FEB | MAR | APR | MAY | JUN | JUL | AUG | SEP | OCT | NOV | DEC



Want to build any kind of website for your hustle? If so, you'll need somewhere to host it! This is the reliable company I've used for my past 5 websites. It's cheap, flexible, and you can get support 24 hours a day.

Get your own hosting plan for just $5 a month!

Learn More


Earn 50,000 travel rewards points (enough for 2 round-trip plane tickets or $625 in travel credit). You'll also earn 2x points on all travel and dining spend, with zero foreign transaction fees.

I use this card every day all over the world! ✈️

Learn More

Quote of the Day
"The lime green color of the bus was probably one of the best business decisions I made without knowing how important it was."
—Zach Poole #SideHustleSchool

Sponsors & Gratitude

Try ShipStation for 60 Days FREE!

Today’s episode of Side Hustle School is brought to you by ShipStation, the #1 choice of online sellers. 📦

To get a 30-day trial AND an additional month free, click the microphone at the top of their page and enter the word HUSTLE.

Get it Here

Like the Show? Leave a Rating!

Side Hustle School is for you! If you’re enjoying it, please take a quick moment to leave a rating or write a quick review. It's really easy and it makes a difference! ✅

It also makes a huge difference when you tell your friends about the show. Remember, it's 100% free and listener-supported.

Here's How

Keep in Touch

There’s a new story every single day on Side Hustle School. Episodes are produced to be short and to the point—I know you’re busy. Be sure you subscribe to get instant notification of the day’s broadcast!

To infinity and beyond,

Chris Guillebeau