Capital Craft Beer fest 2019: one for the books

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Article by Ricardo Teixeira

This year’s Capital Craft Beer fest was unforgettable, as usual. The day kicked off at 11 o’clock, with Little Ringo livening up the main stage, and The Honeymooners at the Hillbilly Ho-down stage. Soon the grounds were packed with beer lovers, lining up at the 37 different beer stalls to quench their thirst. Among the breweries, were well known groups like Cape Brewing Co., Devil’s Peak, Clarens Brewery, Striped Horse and good old Jack Black.

However, we decided to take a tour amongst the lesser known breweries and discovered some new favourites. First was De Poes, a Belgian craft brewery whom we decided to check out first for obvious reasons, their amazing pilsner being one of them. The pilsner was sweet, and slightly acidic. Botswana’s first craft brewery, Big Sip, handed us a delicious and crisp golden ale, getting our legs moving just in time for great performance from Deon Bakkes & the Stolen Horses. The Horses put on a great show, which sadly also served as a farewell to three of their members.

After the show, we stopped by Frontier Beer Co. to grab a bourbon stout, which is a must, filled with a smoky bourbon aftertaste. Frontier Beer Co. also served some out of this world grapefruit and mint G&T’s. An ode is due to the lovely G&T’s that were served at this year’s Beerfest. Next, we hoped to see Koos Kombuis, but unfortunately his show was delayed, and the gap was filled by a truly phenomenal performance from the Jägermeister Brass Cartel. Their performance was described as “F**king full of energy” by some fans that stood in line at Mamelodi Lager with us. Mamelodi Lager was another great brewery, with impressive beer.

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Koos Kombuis arrived just in time to deliver a highly anticipated performance. After seeing Koos rock it out on stage, we opted to get some tasty shawarmas from Griekse Boertjie, whose food has saved my life countless times at OppiKoppi and Mieliepop. We washed down our shawarmas with some Beach Blonde Ale from St. Francis Brewing Company, a beer that tastes like you’re sipping it in the sunshine on a hot beach day. Naturally, we returned for another, then made our way to the comedy stage to catch Casper de Vries. Although the crowd seemed to enjoy it, we were left disappointed by De Vries, who spoke exclusively Afrikaans and his jokes were a bit crude.

We decided to get some Hoegaardens, a delicious Belgian wheat beer that took me back to a strange night in Budapest, while on our way to catch the rest of Mango Groove’s performance – a blast from the past that was as good as ever, if not better. Unfortunately, at this point in the day, Devil’s Peak had a payment system failure that also affected their Snapscan, and due to a lack of cash, we were unable to grab some of their celebrated beers.

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Instead, we tried some of Friar’s Habit Craft Brewery’s California common steam beer, a personal favourite. Rich and crisp, it went down just right, as we watched the next performance on the main stage. What was supposed to be a Fokofpolisiekar performance ended up being a solo show by Francois Van Coke, who gave it his best, and although the crowd may have been left slightly disappointed, they still loyally cheered him on.

Overall, the Capital Craft Beer fest 2019 was great, and enjoyed by many, even the families who brought their kids along. It definitely left festivalgoers looking forward to next year.