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ABC of Beers

Liquor Retailer Buyers Guide!

2014!


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ABC of Beer Liquor Retailer Buyers Guide! Discovering beers in

South Africa! ! ! ! ! ! Copyright © (2104) Holger Meier! All rights reserved



ABC of Beers

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The ABC of Beers is an introduction to beers in South Africa.! The idea of the ABC of Beers, originates fromThe Keg & Thistle days in Florida Road, Durban. The biggest novelty at the Keg & Thistle in the 1990’s, was to “Drink your way round the World”. Briefly, this meant drinking a number beers from different countries around the world to earn an engraved plaque on the wall of your local Keg Pub. To me, the ABC of Beers started as a challenge. The challenge was to find at least one beer, available in South Africa, for each letter of the alphabet. I want to use the ABC of Beers to highlight the variety of beers available in the country. I thank you for downloading this guide.!

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If it was useful please tell your friends and colleagues about it. !

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Let them download it from the website, LiquorSA.co.za/abc-beers so that I can connect with them.!

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Please send feedback & suggestions to holger@meier.co.za.

! Please look out for the next in the series:

Liquor Retailer Buyers Guide

Non Alcoholic Beers


ABC of Beers

The ABC of Beers is an introduction to beers in South Africa.!

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A is for Amstel

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We all know Amstel Lager and it’s slogan:

“slowly brewed extra

matured.”

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Growing up in the 1970’s, Amstel was the only premium beer available in South Africa. As a rule, in our circle of friends, the parents all drank Castle or Lion, we hardly ever saw anyone drink Amstel. Even as youngsters we all knew Amstel was more expensive than the normal beers.!

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SAB brewed and distributed Amstel for nearly 40 years. In 2004 SAB cancelled its agreement with Heineken after Heineken, Diageo and Namibian Breweries formed Brandhouse to distribute their products in South Africa.!

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The original Amstel Brouwerij in Amsterdam, was founded in 1870. At the time it was one of a handful of breweries producing the increasingly popular Bavarian-style ‘lager’ beer. !

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A year before I was born, in 1968 Heineken acquired Amstel. !

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Amstel portfolio range includes Amstel Lager (Africa), Premium Pilsener, Amstel Bright and Amstel Light, but only Amstel Lager is currently distributed by Brandhouse in South Africa.!

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Asahi Asahi is from the leading brewery in Tokyo, Japan, and it is imported by Bhatia International.!

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B is for Budweiser

! Budweiser is the world’s most recognised beer brand. ! ! Budweiser is the third biggest beer brand in the world, but in its home market it is outsold by Bud Lite. Budweiser is sold in over 85 countries around the world.!

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Bhatia International has recently started importing and distributing the beer in South Africa.!

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In 1994 I started my career as a beer salesman, selling Bavaria Lager, then brewed by Bavaria Bräu in Centurion. !

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Now, twenty years later, Bavaria is imported from the second largest brewery in Holland, Bavaria NV.!

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Beck’s, like Budweiser is owned by the worlds dominant brewer, AB InBev. Beck’s is probably Germany’s biggest export brand. Beck’s originates from Bremen. I spent a year as a marketing intern with Unilever in Bremen.!

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Becks was our local beers at the Bremen 1860 Rugby Club. We even had Becks on tap downstairs in the Unilever Staff Bar.!

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Like Bavaria’s beers, Becks' best seller in South Africa, is it’s nonalcohlic version, imported by DGB.!

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Bitburger another famous German beer brand, is imported by Glenfair Beers.!

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I include Breda Royal because my mother-in-law, although not royalty, was a Van Breda. Breda Royal is imported by United Dutch Breweries.!

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Other beer brands starting with a B include Bosun’s Bitter from Mitchell’s Brewery, Bohlinger’s from neighbouring Zimbabwe, Boddingtons, formally imported by NMK, the great Belgium beers from Bellevue and the original Budweiser Budvar from the Czech Republic.!

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Local favourites include Berghof, Brauhaus Pils, Birkenhead Pilsner, Boston Lager and Butcher Block’s Pale Ale.!

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C is for Corona Corona Extra is the sixth biggest beer brand in the world and a recent addition to the AB-InBev portfolio. !

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Corona Extra is the leading beer brand in Mexico, the number one imported beer in the US and the most popular Mexican beer in the world. This Pilsner beer was first produced in 1925 and is now sold in over 170 countries around the world.!

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Corona Extra is often served with a lime wedge. !

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Carlsberg is another famous international beer brand. Carlsberg originates from Denmark but is enjoyed in 150 countries worldwide. Both Corona and Carlsberg are imported by CK Brands.!

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SAB has four big C’s: Carling Black Label, Castle Lager, Castle Light and Castle Milk Stout – all these brands need very little introduction. !

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If my memory serves me correctly, BJ Lankwarden, in his SA Beer Drinkers Guide, named Castle Milk Stout as the best beer in the SAB stable. !

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My affinity with Castle Milk Stout comes from my grand mother, who, under strict doctors orders, had to drink one “long tom” (450ml) Castle Milk Stout every evening. As a teenager, it was my duty to fetch my Oma’s Milk Stout every evening just before she retired to her room. Part of my duty was to pour it in a beer mug – I, off course, never failed to take a big sip, this was to prevent the beer from spilling during the walk down the long passage of the farm house.!

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Other international beer brands starting with C include: Cobra and the famous non-alcoholic Clausthaler.!

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Cobra Beer, now part of Molsons Coors, was founded in 1989, by Indianborn, UK politician Lord Karan Bilimoria. Cobra is distributed by Bhatia, and Clausthaler by Rieses Food Imports.!

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Amoung the local craft brewers I can think of three beers starting with the letter C. They are from Copperlake Breweries, Clarens Brewery and from Cape Brewing Company.!

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D is for Duvel

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“The only thing more desirable than a Belgian beer is a Belgian Beer Glass.�

The Belgian Beer Company and The Belgian Trading Companys specialise in the distribution of Belgian beers in South Africa.!

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There are a number of Belgian beers starting with the letter D. These include Duvel, De Konick, Delirius and De Verboden Vrucht (Notice the forbidden fruit on the label!).!

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Duvel, a Belgian Strong Pale Ale style beer, is exported to more than 40 countries. But I think, the best place to enjoy a Duvel must be at a street cafe in Belgium. !

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I certainly had my most memorable Duvel in Leuven, during a trip to Belgium.! !


F is for Faxe Faxe, the great Danish beer brand from Royal Unibrew, has been in SA for nearly 20 years.!

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The following beers are available in South Africa: Faxe Premium, Faxe 10%, Faxe Royal, Faxe Amber and Faxe Free. Faxe is sold in more than 16 countries worldwide. !

! Faxe is imported by Skylim Beverages.! !

What I love the most about Faxe is their 1000ml beer can especially their Faxe Amber.!

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I am a big Weißbier fan and the second F-beer is Franziskaner. !

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Franziskaner is a popular Weißbier brewed by the Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu which is part of AB-InBev Group. Franziskaner is the german word for Franciscan monk. !

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German Goods imports Franziskaner Weissbeer and Franziskaner Dunkel.!

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Fosters is an Australian Lager now owned by SABMiller. Fosters is available from Bhatia.!

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Flying Fish Flavoured Beer is a recent addition to the South African market. Flying Fish is available in Orange and Lemon flavour and is distributed by SAB.
 After the Great Britain Beer Festival, in London, all the Presidents of the breweries decide to go to the pub for a drink. The Coors President said "Can I have the only beer made with Rocky Mountain Spring Water: a Coors, please." The bartender gave him the drink. Then the Budweiser President orders, "The King Of Beers -- Budweiser." The bartender proceeds with the order. The Amstel President walks in and orders "The Finest Beer ever." The bartender gives him an Amstel. Then the Guinness President says, "I'll have a Coke please." The bartender is taken aback by this but gives the Coke to him anyway. All the Presidents looked over at him and said, "Why have you ordered a Coke?" He replied, "Well if you all aren't drinking beer, then neither shall I.”


G is for Guinness

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Guinness is an iconic Irish Stout that originated in the brewery of Arthur Guinness at St. James’s Gate, Dublin.!

! Guinness is one of the most recognised beer brands in the world. ! ! Guinness is brewed in almost 60 countries and is available in over 100.  !

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I found a book: Guinness Is Guinness many years ago – read it, if you can get your hands on it, it tells the interesting story of this great brand.!

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I was introduced to ”the black stuff” during my first ever visit to an Irish pub in 1993, at the Irish Pub in Berlin. My South African work colleague, with whom I was exploring Berlin, suggested that Kilkenny was the more palatable choice but I had to have my first Guinness. ! I remember that Guinness launched on tap during the 2007 Rugby World Cup in South Africa you can watch the TV Ad here: youtu.be/e3m2ofxLUy0! In 2011  Guinness Original, a new Guinness variant for South African consumers was launched by Brandhouse.!

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The second G stands for Grolsch, a brand steeped in nearly 400 years of heritage.  This super premium brand was imported by NMK Schulz for many years until SABMiller acquired Royal Grolsch in 2008. !  ! Grolsch is available in the iconic 450ml swing-top as well as a 330ml non-returnable bottle.!

! Our local craft beer starting with the letter G is Goshawk.! !

Goshawk claims to be the first gluten free beer in the country.  Goshawk is brewed in a Pale Ale style, using a combination of both Sorghum and Maize malts.!

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Bottle conditioning the beer, gives it a very fine carbonation, often resembling that of a naturally fermented sparkling wine.  !

! Goshawk is available from www.winemakersclub.co.za.! !


H is for Hansa, Heineken, Holsten & Hoegaarden

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Hansa Pilsner one of the top three beer brands in South Africa, held a market share of 21% in 2012.!

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SAB, the brewer of Hansa Pilsner, had a total volume share of 77% of beer sold in South Africa in 2012.!

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Heinken, distributed by Brandhouse, is  rated  the eighth biggest beer brand in the world and  with a 2% market share the sixth biggest in South Africa in 2012.!

Hoegaarden Original White Ale is a Witbier style beer brewed by Brouwerij van Hoegaarden in Belgium.!

! The Beverage People recently started importing Holsten Zero.! !

Interestingly, these four brands are owned by the four largest brewing companies in the world: AB InBev (Hoegaarden), SABMiller (Hansa), Heineken International (Heineken) and Carlsberg Group (Holsten).!

! ! I is for ITA Tequila Ale !

I found two beers that start with the letter I, namely ITA Tequila Ale and Indie Pale Ale.! 
 ITA is an Imperial Ale that gets its finishing touches by maturing the beer in Tequila Añejo oak barrels. ITA is imported by Mexican Imports.! 
 Indie Pale Ale is brewed by Cisco Brewers. Cisco Brewers is a brewery, distillery and winery on Nantucket Island in Massachusetts. It is the sole brewer on the island. It was established as a winery in 1981 and started making beer in 1995 and distilled spirits in 1997. (Source: Wikipedia)! Contact Bananajam Cafe.



J is for Jack Hammer

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BrewDog’s Jack Hammer is an India Pale Ale (IPA) beer brewed by the famous craft brewer in Scotland. !

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Jack Hammer IPA is not part of the core range and it take bitterness to the extreme. Find it under Occasional Brews on the brewdog.com site.!

! BrewDog’s beers are imported by Beverage People .! !

Draymans Brewery in Pretoria brews Jolly Monk, a Rauchbier (smoked beer). Draymans  beers need to be kept refrigerated, they have a shelf life of 2 months.!

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K is for Kilkenny Draught

! Kilkenny is brewed by Guinness and Distributed by Brandhouse.  !

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Kilkenny  is a  nitrogenated  Irish cream ale which originated in Kilkenny, Ireland.   Its heritage dates back to the 14th century.!

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Köstritzer is  one of the most traditional breweries in Germany and a market leader in black beers.!

! German Goods imports Köstritzer.! !

Kingfisher Lager is brewed by India’s largest producer of beer, United Breweries with a market share of around 48% by volume.  United Breweries traces its roots to British soldiers’ love for beer. In 1915, a Scotsman named Thomas Leishman bought five breweries in southern India to form United Breweries. The company transported its beer in barrels on bullock carts, serving British troops.!

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Vittal Mallya, father of present chairman Vijay Mallya, bought United Breweries in 1947, and snapped up distillers and brewers on the cheap when the Indian government briefly threatened prohibition in the 1970s.!


Kronenbourg  1664 a premium french beer brewed by Carlsberg. Kronenbourg 1664 used to be imported by NMK.   I don’t think there is currently anyone importing it into South Africa.!

Watch this awesome (banned) Kronenbourg advertisement featuring Eric Cantona:!

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2kfqsbABHr8

Kaltenberg - “Bier von königlicher Hoheit,”! My favourite beer starting with the letter K  (which, again, is not available here) is König Ludwig Dunkel.!

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The history of König Ludwig Dunkel goes back to the year 1516 and has a very long tradition in Bavaria in particular. !

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Today König Ludwig Dunkel is the most popular dark beer in Germany.   König Ludwig Dunkel is made by the Kaltenberg Brewery, which happens to be owned by His Royal Highness Price Luitpold of Bavaria, a descendant of the author of the Bavarian Beer Purity Law of 1516, the Reinheitsgebot. Prince Luitpold is the current head of the House of Wittelsbach, which ruled Bavaria for more than seven centuries, from 1180 until 1918.!

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In the early 1990′s we at, Bavaria Bräu brewed, K a l t e n b e r g R o y a l L a g e r, u n d e r L i c e n c e from Schlossbrauerei Kaltenberg.!

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During one of his visits to the Centurion brewery, I met the owner of Schlossbrauerei Kaltenberg, HRH Luitpold, Prince of Bavaria.!

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In the late 1990′s I visited Schloss Kaltenberg.   König Ludwig Dunkel was our absolute favourite beer.   The brewery and castle are definitely worth a visit if you are in Munich. !

! Fürstenfeldbruck is only about 40 km from Munich.! ! !


“The  König Ludwig GmbH & Co. KG Schlossbrauerei Kaltenberg  is a  brewery  with headquarters located in  Fürstenfeldbruck  in  Upper Bavaria. Their slogan, “Bier von königlicher Hoheit,” or “Beer of royal highness,” refers to the brewery’s heritage which can be traced back through the  Kingdom of Bavaria. The current proprietor, Prince Luitpold of the House of Wittelsbach, is the great-grandson of the last King of Bavaria, Ludwig III.” - Wikipedia"

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Learn more about the Kaltenberg Brewery and the Bavarians in this video clip from the Beerhunter:!

! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cHthB-FOhuQ! !

Kwak Beer is a 8,4% ABV Belgian import, available at Den Anker at the V & A Waterfront, in Cape Town.  !

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Kwak beer, like most european beers, is served in a special glass.  ! I love beer glasses and when a beer is served in a special glass I am often tempted to add it to my already large collection, dating back to my student days at Maritzburg Varsity.!

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To help patrons overcome this particular temptation, the server at Den Anker will take your left shoe to be held as a deposit until the glass is returned.   A custom that has been brought from 19th century Belgium all the way to modern day Cape Town, this unique and humorous practice makes perfect sense at a place like Den Anker.!


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L is for Lion Lager…

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Remembered for the biggest re-branding fail in the history of the SA beer industry, Lion Lager, once SAB’s top beer brand is no longer brewed in South Africa.!

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The original Lion Lager is  still available in neighbouring Zimbabwe.!  ! I remember Lion Lager’s collectible cans, there was a series on animals, then later a series on sportsmen.  !

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Lion Ale was also brewed by SAB and very popular in Natal.!

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From Belgium we have some  heerlijke beers: Leffe, Liefmans & La Chouffe.  If you need a beer that everyone, including the ladies will enjoy, try a Liefmans.!

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Liefmans Fruitesse is a unique, fresh beer blend, maturing for 18 months on cherries in the Liefmans cellars.!

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Liefmans Cuvée-Brut is brewed once a year. In July, a mixed fermentation beer is enriched with a selection of freshly harvested cherries. After a long maturation period of 18 months to 3 years, several other vintages are blended with this unique Cuvée-Brut.!

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Leffe is available from Legacy Holdings and the others from the Belgian Beer Company.!

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The Lucky Buddha Beer with its unique bottle is imported by Nu World.!

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The Belgian Trading Company imports the following Belgium beer brands: Lindemans, La Guillotine and Lucifer (8.0% ABV).!

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From neighbouring Mozambique, Wines of the World imports the Laurentina Range.



M is for Miller Miller Genuine Draft (MGD) is the international flagship brand of the Miller Brewing Company in the USA. The brand is currently available in 80 countries, and was introduced to the premium beer market in South Africa by SAB in 2003.! Having witnessed the bad reception Budweiser received by South African beer drinkers each time it was launched here, I am surprised how well MGD has been accepted. (Even my Dad is a MGD drinker.)!

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Birra Moretti has been brewed in Italy since 1859.  The brand is now owned by Heineken and it is imported by Adriatic.!

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Maisel’s Weisse was first brewed in 1887.  Maisel’s is one of the leading  Weißbier breweries in Germany.   Maisels is available from German Goods  in Gauteng and Euro Goods  in Cape Town.!

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Merlin’s Mild is a seasonal mid summer speciality from Drayman’s Brewery in Pretoria. It is a dark English mild ale.!

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Maredsous Abbey Beer is brewed by the Duvel Moorgat Brewery under the supervision of monks and to the original recipe preserved at the abbey.  It is imported by the Belgian Beer Co.!

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N is for Native Ale

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Naked Mexican, a tequila flavoured beer, is brewed by Boston Breweries in Paarden Eiland, Cape Town.

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Nanny State – BrewDog launched a low alcohol beer called Nanny State after being branded irresponsible for making the UK’s strongest beer.

! Brewdog beers are available from Beverage People. ! Native Ale is a popular craft beer brewed for Darling Brew. ! ! !


O is for Old Wobbly

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Oh what a problem to find beer brands starting with the letter “O”.  I found a few – mainly starting with the word “Old”.   As usual I try to stick to brands that are suitable for sale in Liquor Retailers.!

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Old Wobbly is a Strong Lager.   The first brew of Mitchell’s Old Wobbly was brewed in September 1990 and had an alcohol level of 12%. This was planned to be a once off brew but this Lager grew quickly in popularity.  Because of the cost of tax on beer the product soon became too expensive and the amount of alcohol within the beer had to be reduced.!

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If I remember correctly, Oranjeboom used to be available at Makro, a good 10 or 15 years ago.   Now Oranjeboom Premium Lager is imported by UDBSA and it is available through Bhatia International.!

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P is for Paulaner

Paulaner is a German brewery, which was established in 1634 in Munich by the Minim friars of the Neudeck ob der Au cloister. The mendicant order and the brewery are named after Francis of Paola, the founder of the order. !

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Paulaner is one of the six breweries who provide beer for Oktoberfest.!

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Paulaner used to have a Brauhaus at the V & A Waterfront in Cape Town, and I regularly made Paulaner Brauhaus my first stop when visiting the city.   Paulaner is now imported by German Goods and Bhatia Interntational.!

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Peroni Nastro Azzurro. SABMiller bought the Peroni Brewery in 2003, making it one of the few international brands in its portfolio. Peroni is brewed locally by SAB.!

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Plzeňský Prazdroj is better known by its German name Pilsner Urquell, (Original Source of Pilsner),  it is a  bottom-fermented  beer produced since 1842 in Pilsen, part of today’s Czech Republic.! I clearly remember the day when it was announced that Pilsner Urquell was acquired by SABMiller. I just hope that SABMiller does not try to brew Pilsner Urquell locally, as is the case with Peroni. I love the unique taste of Pilsner Urquell and I treat myself to a six pack every now and then.


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Pilsner Urquell was the first pilsner beer in the world, and one of the best examples of the world’s most popular beer style.!

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Pilsner Urquell is a truly authentic brand and it SABMiller is doing some exciting things with it. In the UK, they have launched Pilsner Urquell tank beer. Watch this footage, shot at The White Horse in Parsons Green, showing Pilsner Urquell being served out of two traditional copper tanks:!

! Click here to view the clip.! !

I can also recommend an interesting video in the Beer Hunter series where Michael Jackson visits the Pilsner Urquell Brewery:!

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www.youtube.com/watch?v=zhI06uGzQzM!

! Q is for Quills !

Where do I find a beer starting with Q? I FOUND ONE: Quills Blonde Ale!!

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Quills Blonde Ale is brewed at the Porcupine Quills Porcupine Quills brewery at the 1000 Hills Chef School, in Botha’s Hill.


! Quills Blone Ale is a light easy drinking beer and at just over 4% ABV.
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All beers a packed in 12 x 440ml and can be ordered directly from the brewery.!

! R is for Raven Stout !

Mitchell’s Brewery started brewing Raven Stout in 1987. The Raven symbolises most characteristics of the stout: proud, brave, strong, clever and most important, black.!

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The second beer starting with a R is Robinson’s Old Tom’s.   Old Tom is dark, rich and warming with a cherry brandy like colour and character. It is imported by Nu World. 



S is for Samuel Adams Boston Lager

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When Jim left his job to start a brewery, people told him he was crazy. After tasting that first batch of Samuel Adams Boston Lager in his kitchen, he knew he had something that just might prove the doubters wrong. It wasn’t like any beer out there. Full flavoured with hops and malt yet balanced and complex… and the American craft beer revolution began.!

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Unfortunately   Jim Koch’s beers are not available in South Africa.!

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Singha Lager Beer (pronounced sing), however is, it is a pale lager produced by Boon Rawd Brewery. Singha is the best selling beer in Thailand and imported by Bhatia Internationa.!

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Sol Mexican Beer  has been brewed in Mexico since 1899.   This much enjoyed golden lager beer is an easy drinking style that has a nice flavour kick unseen in other lagers. Sol is also imported by Bhatia International.!

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Stella Artois is a  pilsner  beer and it has been brewed in  Leuven,  Belgium, since 1926. Stella Artois is one of the prominent brands of  Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer. DGB distributes Stella Artois in South Africa.!

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Sink the Bismark is a craft beer in Brewdog’s range and Steph Weiss is my personal favourite from Brewers & Union.!

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Local beers starting with S include: Saboteur (Citizen Beer), Serious Dark Ale (Gilroys), Silver Back (Darling Brew), Skeleton Coast IPA (Jack Black Beer), Slow Beer (Darling Brew), Soweto Gold and Spitfire English Pale Ale (Cockpit Brewery).!

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T is for Tafel Lager

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South African beer drinker have long been great supporters of Namibia’s Windhoek Draught, Lager and Light beers, but most Namibians still prefer Tafel Lager.   Tafel Lager is a great beer available at a very competitive price (probably the cheapest imported beer available in South Africa)!

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In the ever creative line up of BrewDog’s beers there are three beers starting with T:  Tactical Nuclear Pinguin, Tokyo and Trashy Blond.  !

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Wikipedia has a complete listing of all the BrewDog beers here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BrewDog.!

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NuWorld imports Thwaites Lancaster Bomber,  Thwaites Double Century & Thwaites Wainwright.!

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Touro Tripel Blonde from Brewers & Union is a rich strong (10%  ABV) blond ale.  It is available in a 750ml bottle.!

Tiddly Toad Light (3% ABV) Lager is a Pale Lager beer brewed by the Nottingham Road Brewing Company.  It is available on tap, in 1L PET bottles and now in cans.!

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! U is for Urbock ! Urbock is a traditional dark beer known as “bock” beer.  A traditional bock beer is ideal for drinking on cold winter nights.! 
 Urbock is only brewed once per year and is therefore only available in May each year, in limited quantity.! 
 Urbock, brewed by NBL and distributed by Bhatia International in South Africa.

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Über Ale is a flavoured ale produced in the Western Cape and available in a 1,5L bag. For sales and orders contact ADL.!

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! ! V is for Van Hunks !

Not only is this beer very drinkable, Van Hunks Pumpkin Ale certainly has shelf appeal.  !

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Every time I look at all the wonderful bottles on display in the craft beer fridge of my local Tops store, I want to take a pumpkin ale home.!

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Van hunks is brewed by Boston Breweries and it is available on tap and in 440ml bottles.!

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Versus Goliath Amber Ale is an amber ale imported by Brewers & Union.!

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Vedett is a premium beer brand in a class of it’s own when it comes to style and attitude, and is seen as ‘the cult beer of Belgium’.  !

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Read this interesting case study on how this brand became cool:!

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http://www.howcoolbrandsstayhot.com/2013/07/19/makinga-forgotten-beer-brand-cool-again-the-case-of-vedett/!

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The Cape Town based Belgian Beer Company distributes Vedett.!

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Viru is a 5.0% ABV pilsner-style beer brewed in Estonia. This beer in the distinctive bottle is imported by Mexco.!

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W is for Windhoek

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! Windhoek is a well know by beer brand in South Africa – but that was not the case when I started selling beers twenty years ago.!

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During my student years in Natal in the late 80′s we only knew SAB beers.  Only our Namibian friends and family drank the foreign Windhoek Lager.!

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When I hear all the craft beer evangelists touting their wares, I am reminded of the early 90′s when the Windhoek and Bavaria sales teams branded all SAB beers as undrinkable chemical brews, in order to sell more of their “real beers”.! ! The Windhoek beers are now brewed in South Africa and distributed by Brandhouse.!

West Coast Ale, the South African Micro-Brewers Champion Beer 2009, is brewed by Shongweni Brewery.  This American Pale Ale, is a ruby red beer with 5% ABV.!

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Whistling Weasel is an English Pale Ale, brewed by Nottingham Road Brewery!

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Weihenstephan Hefe Weißbier is brewed to a classic German recipe, this is a refreshing, naturally cloudy ‘Weißbier’ with a wonderfully rich yeasty taste. Brewed by the ‘Oldest Brewery in the World’. Weihenstephan Hefe is still the benchmark for all quality cloudy wheat beers.!

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NuWorld imports some interesting beers: Well’s Bombardier Burning Gold, Well’s Banana Bread Beer and  Wychwood Wychcraft.!

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X is for X

! X is for Queensland’s most famous beer……XXXX Bitter! ! Although not available in South Africa, I had to use it as there are no other X-beers.!

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XXXX brand was first introduced in 1924 and is a throwback to the long standing tradition  of using Xs to indicate the strength of an ale.!

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As a last resort I will use The Standeaven Brewery’s No 13. Lager X, to represent X.!

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Y is for Young

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NuWorld imports great brands such as Young’s Bitter, Young’s Special London Ale and Young’s Double Chocolate Stout, from the UK’s largest private brewing company, Wells & Young,

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Locally, Yellow Eyes is brewed by the Dam Wolf Brewing Co. in Botha’s Hill.

! Yellow Eyes (ABV 8%) is a Belgium blond ale. ! ! !

! ! ! Z is for Zulu ! The Zululand Brewery owns the Zulu Blonde beer brand.! !

In South Africa, Zulu Blonde is only available at the George Hotel, Eshowe (and in very limited quantities at Liquor City, Groenkloof).!

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! Display !

Boost your Beer Sales!

There is nothing worse than having to ask the barman/waiter what beers are stocked. !

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Whether you own a bar or a liquor store: invest in a display fridge and a beer menu and watch your beer sales grow. !

Pictured: Wim from Liquor City Groenkloof, is passionate about craft beer."


Advertising

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Explore online opportunities to advertise your beers, e.g. www.beermenus.com, use social media or your local press. Beer fanatics will find you if you stock their brands.!

! Refrigeration ! Invest in a walk in or dedicated display fridge. ! Light !

If it’s cold it’s sold.!

Beer hates sun light. Sun light, UV light, any light, is bad news for beer, especially beer packaged in clear or green bottles. Choose beer in a dark brown bottle or a can.!

! Selection !

Support your local brands. There are new breweries popping up at an alarming rate. Choose the breweries closest to you and support them, before anyone else. Invite the brewer to do tastings in your store. Introduce the brewery and the beers to your regulars.!

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While I urge retailers to support the small brands, you are not helping the brands if the beer is not displayed correctly and if they get old on your shelves. Give everyone a chance, but order in small quantities.!

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Ask your sales representative to recommend the “best sellers” in their range and start with those. Ask them to help track the age and expiry dates of the slower brands. Sales Reps hate uplifting expired beers.!

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To help you decide on new brands, provide an opportunity for your regulars clients to request beers that they want you to stock for them. !

! Knowledge and Passion !

Help your team to learn more about the subject. Encourage them to visit local breweries, to learn and understand the industry and the brands, and watch your sales and your profits grow.



Imported Beers Recommendations Allow me to recommend some beers that you should to start with:!

! 1. Corona - Corona seems to be one of the best selling super premium beers right now. What do you think of, when you think of Corona? I think of the beach, beach bars and street cafés, Camps Bay, Café Caprice…!

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2. Erdinger Weißbier!


Weißbier is best served in the classic Weißbier glass. Try get some from your distributor. There are many other Weißbier brands available. If you find that Erdinger is selling, then try Paulaner, Steph Weiss and some of the local Weißbier brands.!

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3. Consider some beers just because they are packaged in great innovative bottles. A great example of this is Viru.!

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4. Innovative flavoured beers include Bachata, a Cuban Rum beer and ITA Tequila Ale.!

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5. When I think of Sol, another Mexican beer sold in a clear glass bottle, I think of fun in the sun, Mexican parties and the dessert. (Heineken owns these three “Mexican” brands.)!

! 6. Stella Artois! !

This popular Belgian Lager is a best seller worldwide. Try find some Stella glasses to sell along with the beer.!


! 7. Belgian Classics - you can always include some Belgian Ales. They are sought after and have a good shelve life.!

8. Iconic Packaging and Flavoured Beers!

Customers will love these exotic looking beers.!

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9. Bottles, PET or Cans! Traditionally the craft beers from Mitchells, Notties and Draymans have been available in PET bottles. This pack is unanimous with fresh craft beer. The new trend is to package craft in 330ml or 440ml glass bottles. These packs look more trendy, especially in the On Consumtion retail trade. The latest move by craft brewers is to pack in cans. Many purists frown upon beer in cans, but I believe that if you asked a craft beer where it would like to live - its answer would be in a keg or a can, where it will stay fresher longer, and where there is no light to destroy it.!

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Now is the time to capitalise on the current demand for premium beers. It is becoming more and more difficult to compete on price with the KVI (known value items) spirit and beer brands. Look no further than beer, both craft and imported. 


Beer Importers and Distributors

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The smaller distributors just do not have the capacity to reach all the retailers but if you position your self as a specialist beer retailer be assured that they will support you.! Here is are some links to the main importers and distributors of beer:! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/imperial-tequila-ale/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/belgian-trading-company/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/wines-of-the-world/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/bhatia-international-south-africa/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/belgian-beer/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/nu-world! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/royal-unibrew/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/united-dutch-breweries/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/german-goods/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/adriatic/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/ck-house-of-premium/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/brewers-union/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/glenfair/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/bavaria/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/oti/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/holsten/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/brewdog/! http://www.liquorsa.co.za/sab/!

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Local Beers

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The booming South African craft beer industry warrants a guide on its own, but I want to include a few tips in this introductory guide, for you.!

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Craft brewers generally have limited resources: that means that they can often not brew enough beer, they can often not spend enough on marketing, they can often not employ enough sales representatives and they don’t have the infrastructure to deliver the beer to their clients. But despite all those limitations, there is a huge opportunity for liquor retailers to make good profit from craft beers.!

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Here is a list of 10 Beers to consider: (Yes I know there are many more, but you have start somewhere):!

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Mitchells Brewery! Nottingham Road Breweries! Draymans! Devils Peak Brewing! Cape Brewing!

6. Jack Black! 7. Copperlake! 8. Boston Beer! 9. Darling Brew! 10. Citizen Beer 

! The contact details for these local brands are all on www.liquorsa.co.za! ! To receive a notice when the next guide becomes available please update your details on the mailing list, here is the link http:// www.liquorsa.co.za/guides


Abc of Beers