It’s been a long time since we’ve written, but that is just because it’s been booming beer and all three of us have been getting on with it in various parts of the industry, and then coming together for an event like the Cape Town Festival of Beer. What a cool event. What a big event for Cape Town!
We were on both sides of the bar this year; getting the word out there for a couple of brands; discovering new beer; making new friends; selling beer and it was good. It’s a festival that is going to grow every year and become a real landmark event for the city and the country.
We were representing Camelthorn Brewing Company from Namibia and were serving their Rooibos Lager, the black Schwarz Ale, a very nice Sundowner Lager and the favourite in many people’s eyes the Weizen Wheat beer. As with many of the breweries it’s always great to see the joy of taste in a new dicoverer of your brew as they taste a sample for the first time and then immediately order a full pint. There’s a little bit of magic that happens there!
With the festival having SAB as its main sponsor there have been no stand fee’s for breweries the past 3 years, the condition being that tasters should be presented to the public and that those that would like more then buy a pint/half pint/bottle of beer and a sale is made. But of course as the festival grows so it does grow more expensive for small breweries. More money can be made, depending on the attractiveness of the beer, but even the most polite beer lover will be a little sozzled if it’s the 40th beer he’s had a taster of out of the 150 plus beers on show! For some it was their mission to taste as much as possible, though everyone that was there has to agree that it was peaceful, with a very pleasant crowd throughout. Some much more pleasant than others. Cape Town has some beautiful looking beer lovers!
Although we didn’t have that much time to get to all the breweries we wanted to, here were some of our favourites. It’s always great to taste what Ryno from The Bru House brews and his Porter this year was exceptional. Robson’s Brewery, from KwaZulu-Natal, had a lovely subtle Cherry Beer which was sold out by Sunday due to it being so popular. Brew Dog ZA’s Hard Core India Pale Ale (at 9.2%) was very exciting with its smoky hoppyness though probably more for the real craft beer lover. Stellenbrau’s Alumni Ale was smooth and easy to enjoy, while Mitchell’s Raven Stout always brings a smile to my face!
Just next door to us was the whole family from the new Standeaven Brewery in KwaZulu-Natal and we were very impressed with their African Pale Ale (4.2%) and especially their Press Club Stout (4%). It was the final beer of the festival for us and one that just seemed perfect to finish it off with.
Amigos Tequila flavoured Beer seemed to have the most fun at their stand, and if you look at many of the photos that have been posted online you’ll see lots of people walking around with their stick-on Mo’s. They were running a competition and had an awesome “Show Jor Mo” board the best pics won a case of their beer.
The festival had some great music throughout, lots of wonderful food stalls (with Nash’s What’s Up Ribs & San Julian Taco’s being the real stand-outs) and of course we enjoyed watching the Springboks beat England in their final game of the aeason and the tour! Not even the rain kept people away and it was awesome watching the game in such a full tent of beer & rugby lovers.
We’re looking forward to being a part of the next festival – as I said we feel its just going to grow from strength to strength, and it will firmly confirm that Cape Town is the beer capital of Africa!