South African Beer Heritage
In 1658 Jan van Riebeeck started brewing beer from the Fort in Cape Town. He was followed by Pieter Visagie brewing from the Liesbeeck River, Cloete at the Newlands Brewery, Ohlsson at the Anneberg Brewery, Letterstedt at Mariendahl Brewery, Hiddingh at Cannon Brewery, Martienssen at the Salt River Brewery, and a second Cloete in Kloof Street.
However it was the discovery of Gold on the Rand in 1886 that resulted in the subsequent beer rush. Because after digging for gold all day, the thirst for some liquid gold was huge. So in 1887 Charles Chandler opened Johannesburg’s first brewery, and a year later Charles Glass introduced his Castle beer.
Mining changed, the landscape changed, the town grew from a tent camp to the largest city in South Africa, but what stayed the same was the thirst for beer. In 1892 Frederick Mead, a young entrepreneur brewer from Natal, bought the small brewery from Glass and built the larger Castle Brewery to meet the massive Johannesburg beer demand.
In 1956 Castle Beers, Lion Beers and Union Breweries merged into The South African Breweries Limited and by 1998 SAB commanded an approximate 98 percent share of the South African beer market.
In March of 2012, after two years of business case development, recipe development, garage brewing, government applications, acquiring the right talent, and perfecting the same techniques as those pioneers that came before them, The Devil’s Peak Brewing Company was born.
This massive new addition to our South African beer heritage has been embedded in the craft beer revolution in South Africa, and is now on the forefront of educating the South African beer consumer on the variety and quality that exists across the beer landscape.