Now, there’s a microbrewery down every alley and we can choose from weiss, lager, ale, pilsner and porters to name a few. With a plethora of producers, each with their distinct flavour and styles, restaurants are having to rethink their drinks lists and progressive players now offer pairings of beers with foods.
Not to be left behind by the craft beer trend, wines and spirits have followed suit. The days of quaffing Gordon’s gin and Schweppes tonic are long gone for the in-crowd.
Initially a Cape trend, there are now craft gins being produced in Durban and Johannesburg too. Ginifer and Westcliff gins for example, produced by Jacqueline Grobler, flavors their gins with local herbs sourced from the Faraday muti market in Jozi.
Innovative liquor merchants have made it their focus to stock these craft products – like Dry Dock Liquor, a new kid on the block in trendy Parkhurst. Co-owner Jonah Naidoo mentions that having staff that really understand the products, weekly tastings hosted by experts, listening to customers and being able to share the stories of the producers is resulting in visits to the store being experiential, differentiating them from the online retailers and the run-of-the-mill bottle stores.