A few weeks ago I was walking downtown, and saw a logo on the window of a building. It looked cool. Two hands shaking. It said “Our Mutual Friend”. Cool. I kept reading. “Malt & Brew”. What the hell? I like these words..
A few days later Sean and I found ourselves at Our Mutual Friend’s bar. The place is great. They’re still building out, but you sit down at the bar and sort of feel like you’re in your buddy’s basement. There’s a guitar on the bar, books above the sinks, and some stellar conversation. Oh, and a bunch of beer on tap.
Unique to Our Mutual Friend is their status as a maltster. No other brewery in Denver currently toasts and malts their own grains; generally, you buy bags (or truckloads) of the stuff pre-toasted and pre-malted. That’s why the ingredient is called malt. Crazy, right?
Our Mutual Friend, however, decided to take total control over that ingredient. Moving from an amber malt to a darker option is possible in house with just a few more minutes in the toaster. Whether you find this to be stupendous or stupid, this fine-grain (har har) control is unique to the Denver brew scene, and should offer some interesting options to really differentiate malts.
The beer is fantastic and simple. Only one of the beers have names beyond their intended style. While we were there, they had a saison, pale ale, ipa, porter, and the only named beer, the Proletariat, weighing in at a whopping 4.5%. A true working man’s brew.
6 IBU, 6 SRM, 4.5% ABV
Our lightest beer, we made the Proletaria for the no frills beer drinker who just wants a crisp, clean refreshing ale. It’s the only beer we named, dubbed in reference to the working class of our capitalist society, the common men and women who are always welcome at OMF. Hints of citrus, biscuit.
28.4 IBU, 6.3 SRM, 4.3% ABV
Our Saison is brewed using French yeast to give it a spicey character. We use all-nugget hops, adding citrus notes to the beer’s flavor. For summer afternoons or long night winter sessions.
61.5 IBU, 9.2 SRM, 5.6% ABV
The Pale is our Queen Ale and what started it all for us at OMF. Back in the days of brewing in Bryan’s kitchen, the Pale Ale was the first brew to convert us all to believers. The Pale is medium bodied, with a sweet finish accented by American hops. It’s the beer we’d sip on all day if we could.
116 IBU, 19 SRM, 7.1% ABV
Dedicated to the Cottonwood, Juniper, and Ponderosa pines of Colorado, the India Pale Ale is a step up from the Pale, more bitter and more bold. We use all Chinook hops in a nod to our love of the pine trees, giving our IPA a fundamental piney-floral kick, with hints of caramel and toastiness. Preferred for planning weekend excursions to the Rockies.
18 IBU, 45 SRM, 6.4% ABV
The anchor of the OMF tap line, the Porter offers a dark roasted character with secret flourishes of coffee and chocolate. The finish is sweet from our English style yeast. Ideal for long chats with a friend.
In addition to these five flagship brews, Our Mutual Friend will have a rotating tap for collaborations, one offs, specials, and other beery terms. The seventh tap will have homemade root beer for the non-drinking, and designated driving crowd.
Brandon, Bryan, and Andrew each have their own story to tell, and now they have a bar from behind which to tell it. They’re planning on being open mid-August, and we’ll be sure to let you know when that date is set.
While “Our Mutual Friend”, according to Wikipedia, is one of Dickens’ most sophisticated works, combining psychological insight with social analysis, Our Mutual Friend, the brewery, is less draining on your mental facilities, and more a place to meet a friend over a beer and tell your own stories.
See more photos from our visit: