Tapping into Durban’s ‘Hopulent Hobby
The art of beer-brewing: Previously, a scientific discipline reserved exclusively for the chemically-knowledgeable and produced in copious amounts by larger conglomerates, thereafter bottled on a conveyor belt operation and delivered fresh and chilled to the millions who cannot resist the crisp experience. That was before.
But enter the year 2015, and the art of beer-brewing has seen a real revolution. After years of enjoying those said big brands, a new hobby seems to have taken the 031 by storm. A brewing storm.
It seems like the trend of brewing craft beer in the comfort of one’s own home is gaining much momentum in the 031, as more and more Durbanites invest in their very own beer-making kits, lending their own creativity to concocting the perfect taste and flavours.
While conventional brands and brewskies still have their place and continue to dominate and enhance the revelry on the social scene, the beauty of craft beer is slowing growing on beer-holders, as more thought and effort is put into the taste and texture, thereby affording them more choice.
It is no secret that Durban’s neighbour watering hole – Nottingham Road – has long been exploring this avenue for years. With a selection of delicious personally crafted beer, the sky is the limit when it comes to preference and just what tickles one’s taste buds. The awesome thing about craft beer is that the alcohol content is somewhat steeper with a taste explosion like no other. Durban too is now learning that craft beer has become conventional beer’s new smaller but funkier sibling on the scene; a sibling that can very well hold its own.
A delicious blend of hops, barley, yeast and whatever natural flavourant one desires to make their drink experience just that much more enjoyable, craft beer is, essentially, a masterpiece of creativity with each sip. The variations that may be achieved by the simplest and smallest of tweaks and additions are endless. With the evolution of the alcohol industry craft beer tasting and collecting is at a close tie in the race of collectables for individuals with a taste for premium, quality beverages. Similar to wine, craft beer ages as beautifully as mom’s Christmas cake, soaking in dark rum over time. Craft beer gets better and better with age (through the fermenting process that may take up to five weeks). Craft beer ages as beautifully as George Clooney.
Home grown based collection ‘The Dawg Series’ is the new kid on the Durban block and is finally on the beer market for all craft beer fanatics and collectors all over South Africa. The group that brings Durbanites this delicious series comprises of PMB based microbrewer Travis Boast (Mo’ Gravity), crazy cool creative Nkanyezi Ndela (Visual Foc) and independently strong Zama Memela (Easy Eating).
These three individuals have taken a unique stance on the delicate practice of beer brewing and pairing their beers with food. Unique and exceptionally South African, ‘The Dawg Series’ is something most have never seen before. It goes beyond taste; it exudes quality and a passion that is so inherent within the South African. Over the coming weeks, some exceptionally exciting plans are to be released on the scene in conjunction with the Easy Eating crew.
So, we start with The Dawg: a craft beer that utilises the general characteristic ingredients of the brewing process, left to ferment for a long period of time for flavours to mature and, of course, to give that buzz-kick from that high alcohol content. What is the result? A beautifully rounded essence with an after-bite that is reminiscent of coffee beans and a hint of fruitiness. “When you drink it you feel like ‘The Dawg’, aka the boss,” Nkanyezi exclaimed with pride. “The Dawg Series defines the characters of the people who don’t need to be told how to live
and think,” Nkanyezi’s counterpart, Zama explained with an air of absolute confidence.
What is to follow is a craft beer titled “The Hair of the Dawg” just for the morning after a ‘big one’, as well as a craft beer designed perfectly for the beer drinking babes, that are not afraid to give the guys a run for their money.
Both Zama and Nkanyezi, are just a few of the many who believe that the art of brewing craft beer is something that has its place in local society and hope to inspire others to take up the art, affording more sumptuousness to beer-lovers. And word on the street is that, it’s not as difficult as one may think. All you need is the home brew kit, a dark room, fermenting barrels and a bunch of beer bottles for the delicious masterpiece to live inside. The general ingredients will be supplied in the home brew kit and may involve a little experimenting. It’s totally worth the experience, especially being able to present your very own beer (be it malt, ale, pilsner or whatever you may like to name it) to your friends as you sit around a braai and gloat over what a beer connoisseur you have become. ҉