Another new bar crowing its dedication to craft beer – ‘so what?’ we hear you say and you’d be forgiven for clickety-clicking somewhere else at this stage, however, hold that finger mid-click for a second. This little good looking bar that recently opened on an idyllic cobblestone street off of Mariahilferstrasse is soooo (insert many more Os here) much more than a bar. Especially if you’re a craft beer nerd.
Granted, on the surface, it looks like any other hip craft beer place, with its twelve beers on tap, the warm, somehow retro interior and the young, friendly and knowledgeable staff behind the bar in hip t-shirts. It’s all there. However, if you look a little closer at the beers on tap, even the most diehard craft beer connoisseur will find new discoveries. That’s because Ammutsøn answers to nobody, but its own craft beer acumen when choosing what it pumps through its taps. The bar is independent, and by this we mean, it’s not chained to any big drinks distributor.
‘So what?’ you squawk again, well, this is a rare find in an age when big company buyouts of small breweries (meaning the term ‘craft beer’ kind of loses the ‘craft’ bit) is commonplace and bars are bound to big drinks distribution companies that throw around their muscle, dictating what drinks can, and cannot be included in a bar’s menu.
Ammutsøn is all about advocating for small independent brewers by bringing their brews to the beer nerd’s palates, and introduce them to curious craft beer enthusiasts.
This means rare and hard-to-find brews make up the menu on the television above the bar – the beers on tap change so regularly here, there’s no point printing out a menu. We order one of the 4 IPAs on the menu, fresh, deliciously fruity IPA from Tyrol. It’s like any good IPA love affair – sweet and bitter, full of fruity flavours and a strong aroma – golden.
Misho, the friendly owner’s story is one straight out of the book: after years of working for large corporates, he decided to chase his dream and open up his own place.
And not just any place. Ammutsøn is ‘proud to be independent,’ as printed on the back of the t-shirt of the barkeeper. Misho talks passionately about the small brewer’s plight and how he is on a mission to give them a tap to showcase their unique creations.
We know we keep saying it, but Misho is serious about this independence thing. He has complete freedom on the beer flowing from the taps and the number one rule he has when choosing them is that he has to know the brewers personally.
He prefers to keep it close to home, working with smaller breweries from Austria, Germany, and Italy. Sourcing beers from close to home ensures freshness, he tells us. This dedication to freshness also means no bottled beer is sold at Ammutsøn – just what flows from the taps.
‘I want to work with brewers that are creative, that make their beer funky, punky, crazy,’ Misho tells us. Misho talking about beer, is like listening to a porn play out for beer nerds.
Misho is so passionate about his beer that he gives us a tour of Ammutsøn’s beer basement, aka. the heart of the operation, as he likes to call it. This is where he’s built a science lab setup of (chilled) barrels, pumps and pipes sending fresh beer to thirsty customers in the bar. He tells us bars in Austria are required to clean their pipes every three months. Bullshit, he tells us. There’s no way you’ll get a quality beer like that, so he cleans his pipes every three weeks. Mind you; this whole system was custom-built by the mad scientist himself. Like we said – beer porn for beer nerds.
If you’re wondering about the name, google the word ‘Ammut’ and a picture will pop up of the Egyptian Goddess who had a hippo’s ass and a crocodile’s head. She was known as the ‘Eater of hearts.’ The rest of the story we’ll leave it to Misho to explain (do ask, as it makes for a great story).
Propped up on a pedestrian only street, the location is excellent for a stellar beer garden setup. Meanwhile, the dark wooden tones and high stools and tables inside make for a great winter hideaway. Ammutsøn is a ‘craft beer dive’ run by passionate people for people passionate about their beer.