A brewpub befitting Uptown.
Deep in the crunchy heart of Boulder is a brewery that embodies the town: Mountain Sun Pub & Brewery has great, strong home brews, long picnic tables for a community vibe, and a dreadlocked waitstaff that rotates positions so quickly you can't, like, keep track of your server, man.
Now, the owner of Mountain Sun (and its newer South Boulder sibling, Southern Sun Pub & Brewery) has a Denver outpost: Vine Street Pub. Just down from the bustle of St. Mark's Coffeehouse and the Thin Man, this new Uptown spot is more city-savvy than its cousins. The waitstaff is fast and friendly, and you'll be hard-pressed to spot a dreadlock among the bunch. The staff's look suits the clientele—young professionals who chain their bikes to the patio railing and call their 10 closest friends for dinner.
However, there are some things that have stayed consistent, and the first is the beer. The Mountain Sun franchise has repeatedly turned out some award-winning beer (it has six gold medals from the Great American Beer Festival), and Vine Street's offerings are modeled after the Mountain Sun's. Hops-lovers should be sure to try the Colorado Kind Ale; it's an homage to the brewers' near-dangerous love of hops, but tempered nicely by the full body of an amber beer. Be sure to check out the "Guest Beers" list, where you can try hard-to-find treats like an extra-smooth Dale's Pale Ale poured on a nitro tap.
Vine Street also offers organic and veggie grub—try the vegetarian black bean chili for a perfect match for the cooling weather. Arrive early to enjoy those eats on the heated patio, because the crowds indicate that Denver doesn't mind having a dose of the People's Republic to call its own.
1700 Vine St., 303-388-2337, www.mountainsun-pub.com