A round up of what’s happening with some of the new beers we’ve seen lately and whats to come.
By MIKE HALLS
I’m trying something new here and adding a little news section. This is not something I intended when first creating this blog, however with all the new beers coming out of late, this may in fact be the future!
These are exciting times to be a beer drinker in South Africa, and I can feel the next wave of this revolution breaking. In the past few weeks we have seen several new/ limited release beers launched. I truly feel that this small batch, single release style of brewing is going to move the South African beer scene forward leaps and bounds.
Being able to visit a brewery and try a different beer each time is what inspires me to keep on going back. I get bored very quickly when tap rooms have the same four or five beers on tap month in, month out. You get a lager/ pilsner, a Weiss an ale (Pale Ale or IPA) and a Stout/ Porter! Meh! It’s almost like an illusion of choice, like when back in the day, you had a ‘choice’ between a Castle and a Windhoek!
Last week saw the launch of two awesome collabs. The first was the 420 collab by Riot and Soul Barrel; the Pacific Vine, launched at Afro Caribbean on Friday. It’s a dank IPA, in homage to the Pacific North West style that started the modern IPA movement. We know by now that Riot knows their way around hops. Not only does Marc import the best selection in SA through his other business Africa Hops, but he also makes one of the best IPA’s Riots Valve. Soul Barrel is one of those breweries that is pushing the boundaries in South Africa, look out for my review of their brewery coming soon. Suffice to say, the Pacific Vine is an awesome beer, and if you haven’t tried it yet, head over to Soul Barrel soon, before it gone forever!
Also out last week was a collab between two of my favourite people in beer. Drifter and RHBC launched their Tropic of Collab, a pineapple infused IPA. I was fortunate enough to get a sneaky try of this out of the tank when I was in Port Elizabeth a couple of weeks back. As you would expect from a beer made by two fantastic brewers such as Niall and Nick, it was awesome. The beer is currently available from RHBC in PE and will be at Drifters Tap Room in Woodstock very soon. This one is also available in cans, check out the impressive can design below.
We also had the release of the Crypto Collab from the giants of the Gauteng brewing scene; Mad Giant and Cape Towns pioneer of how craft brewing should be done; Aegir Project. This Double IPA was an explosion of hops, and I absolutely loved it. You’d be hard pressed to find any more of it but expect to see more collabs from these two in the near future.
So, what for the future? Well I predict, nay, demand a whole load more of exactly this, from the rest of the breweries content on re-brewing the same old beers. Craft for me is about variety, new tastes and should be ever evolving.
Tomorrow sees the launch of two more new beers, from two of the big guys in the Cape.
First up is an IPA from Woodstock Brewery called Slice of Life, a Lemon Session IPA at only 4.7% ABV, meaning you can drink all day long! Woodstock are known for their varied seasonal beers and limited release small batches, so I expect great things from this one.
Also released tomorrow at 12 noon, is Darling Brews latest IPA, a LTD IPA, however I have very little information about this one as the release is being kept quite secretive. Keep an eye on their Instagram account for more details and try to guess which animal inspired this brew. Darling have the largest selection of beers out of any brewery I know in South Africa and continue to keep growing their range. If this LTD release is the start of some more limited release beers, then more exciting time are ahead.