Common Bond Brewers
If you’ve spent any time at all in downtown Montgomery recently, you know there’s something new to discover around every corner.
It’s all part of a collective push to revitalize and expand the historic capital city, as new homes, restaurants and renovations are popping up all over. In particular, there’s one new addition to the city’s weekend itinerary that’s looking to give a boost to Montgomery’s economic efforts and show you a good time while doing it.
That place is Common Bond Brewers.
You wouldn’t know it from its humble location nestled behind Bibb Street Pizza Company, but the locally-owned and operated brewery and taproom has already become a hub of community gathering and economic growth since it opened in April.
While it may look like an ordinary, hole-in-the-wall bar from the street, Common Bond is actually far from it - its owners claim it’s Montgomery’s first production brewery since before Prohibition.
What does that mean?
When asked about the shiny, intricate arrangement of metal containers, tubes and kegs in full view of the taproom’s bar, the brewery’s founders said they wanted to offer a unique beer-drinking experience to its customers.
“We will always only have Common Bond products,” said Andrew McNally, who founded the business with his friend, Tim Doles. “What you see through those windows is what we made here and what we sell here.”
The pair first started with their idea for the brewery three years ago, and this past April it came to fruition with the grand opening of the taproom.
“It’s different from a bar, where you can have taps from wherever coming in, and they’ll rotate through,” McNally explained. “No, this is all about Common Bond and what’s made in the community.”
While McNally and Doles are not River Region natives, they met in Montgomery through their sons, who go to school together.
“(Andrew) talked to me about this idea that he had of bringing craft beer to Montgomery, and as a craft beer enthusiast myself, I was very intrigued by that and fortunate to become a part of that vision that he had,” Tim says.
That vision revolves around the pair’s four flagship beers: Ramber, Pale Ale, Blonde and IPA.
While they only serve four beers for now, the two hopheads said they will be expanding their taproom’s beers in the future, and are always tinkering to create new and original recipes. In the meantime, they are focusing on letting folks know that the whole purpose of their business is to connect a growing community.
“I’ve seen tremendous growth here downtown in the time I’ve been here,” Doles says. “We believe strongly in the revitalization process downtown and what’s going into the businesses in keeping and attracting young people to businesses other than ours in this area.
That’s kinda what brought us here; to be part of the revitalization of an historic area.”
From the looks of things, they did just that.
Thanks to a 14-month renovation process that resurrected the city’s old, run-down Lowe’s automotive parts building, McNally and Doles created a clean, modern, family-friendly environment that stays true to its roots.
After you walk into the brewery’s subtle entrance hidden behind the pizza restaurant out front, you walk down a ramp and are greeted by a large, bright common area furnished with tables, sofas and cushy armchairs.
From every corner of the room to the taproom’s bar, you can find board games, cards and menus for local food. That’s right; you can play board games, eat and relax at this place, and it’s all good as far as the taproom staff are concerned.
But wait, there’s more.
Not only can you bring your kids here and not have to worry about loud music or smoking, you can even bring your pets. McNally said there’s no limit on what kind of pet, or how big or small they are.
“You can bring your fish in a bowl if you really wanted to,” he says with a chuckle.
While the brewery is looking to continue to grow itself and the community, its founders are looking to expand into distributing its beer to local bars, restaurants and even Biscuits games.
For now though, order or bring whatever food you want while you try Montgomery-brewed beer, and know that you can be a part of a bond that brings the city together.
“Beer is a medium that brings people together,” McNally says. “Whether you’re going with friends or you’re meeting someone new that you’ve never even met before, the reason why you went there was to share a beer. Of that comes the bond that you guys built; hence, Common Bond.”
For more info about Common Bond, visit the brewery’s website at commonbondbrewers.com