First the East Coast, then the world: Lewiston’s Baxter Brewing Co. launched sales in its eighth state this week.

Founder and CEO Luke Livingston said the beer is now being sold in New Jersey, starting in 40 independent liquor stores.

“There’s a burgeoning craft beer culture there,” Livingston said. “It’s probably a couple years behind where the culture is in New England and New York, so I think we’re going in at a really exciting time for the state.”

Another perk: There’s people. Lots of ’em, and year-round.

“It’s good for us to be distributing in states that are densely populated,” he said. “So much of our sales in Northern New England are so seasonal based so it’s nice to help offset the seasonal ebbs and flows to be in more populated states like New Jersey.”

In the short-term, it’ll likely mean hiring a New York-New Jersey sales rep. In the long-term, more beer sold there means more beer-making here.

“I hope it’ll have a trickle-down effect over time,” he said.

Not tacos, TACOS

Yes, October is Halloween. It’s lesser celebratory cousin: National Taco Day.

For the third year, Margarita’s Mexican Restaurants, including the one in Auburn, will roll out two-pound tacos and a challenge: Finish a Taco Gigante in one sitting and you’ll score one free taco a week for a year. (One dollar from each Taco Gigante sale is being donated to the End 68 Hours of Hunger campaign.)

What’s in that two-pound, 12-inch shell? According to the company: lettuce, refried beans, Mexican rice, seasoned chicken, taco beef, pork carnitas, bacon, salsa fresca, cheese, queso sauce, crema, pickled jalapenos, picante and hacienda sauce.

So, a lot.

National Taco Day is Oct. 4 but the Taco Gigante will be around from Sept. 29 to Oct. 27.

A spokeswoman was unsure how many people typically take the challenge and how many of those folks finish.

Guessing, a little.

Quick hits about business comings, goings and happenings. Have a Buzzable tip? Contact Staff Writer Kathryn Skelton at 689-2844 or [email protected]

This was corrected Friday to read that the free taco challenge is one free taco a week for the rest of the year.

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