serendipitous beer: Dunn Bros
I call it beer serendipity, when arriving at a restaurant for a light lunch only to find that the place serves beer. It is craft beer where you least expect it that manages to brighten my day, whether I am in the mood for drinking it or not.
Usually I am.
8:30 in the morning at Dunn Brothers near 26th and Hennepin … okay that time I was not. I ventured in on my way to run several errands, dropped my keys, spilled one thing or another. That kind of morning. The space had taken
Though I was visiting for a scone and my caffeine fix, I was pleased to see that the model of coffee + food + beer is expanding. This may not be of much importance to some, but as a writer who prefers to leave the house most days, the ability to transition from brunch and coffee to a quick pint while doing final edits is refreshing.
The coffee-to-beer options are expanding. In addition to classics like French Meadow who specialize in responsibly-sourced breakfasts and a gluten-free pastry case, Muddy Waters moved south several blocks in 2011 and has assumed the beer-bar role much more seriously. And of course, Freehouse has taken to encouraging beer for breakfast, as well.
Late summer offerings include the menu at left, and for this fall they are featuring two wine cocktails plus three made with beer.
612 Brew Rated R, a rye IPA, is used in two of the four drinks including The Mayflower, also featuring ginger-infused cranberry juice and maple, which foams up into a fluffy pink head. Or try the same beer in the Rockin’ Rye which is made with a house rye syrup and cherry bitters.
I am not the only one who is enthused by the idea of coffee meets beer plus a decent menu. Customers at Dunn Brothers have expressed their surprise and delight at the unexpected find when stopping for a cup of coffee, according to several staff I spoke with. Whether people will consider this a cocktail or happy hour destination is unclear — tap beers have been moderately successful, but it has taken some encouragement for drinkers to go for the mixed items.
I certainly hope the model is very successful, particularly for Dunn Brothers, who is taking on not just alcohol service in an unlikely place, but also beer cocktails.