It wouldn’t be a BS adventure if craft beer did not make it’s way in to an article. While fine wine may be known to the world, South Africa is definitely making a mark in Cape Town with craft beer.
There were many choices of stops to enjoy a cold beer in Cape Town. Many restaurants and even The Cellars-Hohenort hotel we stayed in had excellent options to enjoy. The two most important pieces to me in a craft brewery location are simple: quality of beer and atmosphere. While one can be better than the other, when they work in harmony it can leave a lasting impression like none other. We made a few stops, drank a few beers, and snap a couple of photos of our adventure.
Stop #1 Woodstock Brewery – This brewery is a big time player of the craft beer game in South Africa. You could compare them to a Cigar City in Florida, a Oskar Blues in Colorado, or an Ommergang in New York. They look at craft beer as the combination of art, business, and science. That along with a clear gap in the market, they decided to purchase a spot in a neighborhood with a rapidly growing foodie culture, Woodstock.
This modern two story makes me think of the look and feel of some of the “up and coming” spots in Brooklyn, NY. Spacious seating both indoors and out, the vibe this place sets is hip and exciting. The beers we had were good but some may have been marked down due to a tap or line issue. I was able to get some samples from another source and found them to be better then the original taste. One thing I am a fan for is good food to go with your beer. While the beer is the star, it is always better compliment it with quality food. I can if the wood grilled calamari is any indicator, they are just as committed to food as they are craft beer.
Stop #2 The Brewer’s Co-op – This is a home brewers nirvana. The Brewer’s Co-op and Common Room consists of a collective group who have bought in to be a part of the co-op. Currently it’s membership consists of 14 brewers and 2 managing partners who focus on the social structure and the design space of the bar. They have a constantly changing tap list of small batch craft beer which usually consists of around 16 taps at once.
This place has an eclectic feel and the fact that it’s a group of homebrewers showcasing their talents is what we need more of in Central Florida. It was great to see all the styles they had and the background of all the brewers. The Co-op is about good beer at a good price, doing it yourself, and a working collaboration that together makes the business not only sustainable but providing patrons with the love of hand crafted beers of different styles. I ended up staying around well beyond what I planned simply because I enjoyed talking with Hester, who as the kids say was “dope af”.
Stop #3 Devils Peak Brewing – The name is pretty easy to comprehend once you upstairs to their brewery / taproom and see Devil’s Peak looking at you from their view. The name clearly roots their brand in Cape Town. Currently they are the king of craft beer in Cape Town, with multiple wins in the Cape Town Festival of Beer, The Johannesburg Festival of Beer, and the SAB Craft Brewer Championship.
Everything I see about this brewery is top notch. From the open floor plan, to the brass kettles, the fresh smell of brewing, and the fact that after each sample of beer I was in awe. One thing that stood out was their beer and food pairing. Anyone who knows me know that when you can pair me a perfect combo of food and beer I will be forever in sweet sweet craft nirvana. Looking to be at the forefront of innovation in the country, they plan of launching the Afrofunk sour facility which will be an in-house barrel aging program to bring this global trend home to Cape Town.
There were many spots to find and plenty of craft beer to be had. I wish I had more time to try them all. But then again, it’s all the more reason to go back.