Last week I began a series for Durban Is Yours, notable for being recently voted SA’s Best Music Blog at the SA Blog Awards, as well as being edited by my friend and sometimes-dickhead Bob Perfect. This week’s piece is a quick (and rather polemic) overview of Kwazulu-Natal’s most influential microbreweries, including Shongweni Brewery, Nottingham Road Brewery and Zululand Brewery.
An aside I wanted to make in this piece that I couldn’t due to space constraints was that this month sees the closing down of Ballito’s Luyt Brewery, the second coming of ex-SA rugby chief, fertiliser magnate and sometimes-racist Louis Luyt’s four decades-old brewing project. Although Luyt wasn’t the best beer, and its history has been famously fraught and difficult (its tussle with SAB over market share in the 1970s was characterised by dirty tricks and politicking), its microbrewery gave a small speck of personality to what has become a monstrously bland and overgrown seaside town. As far as I know, the beer will still be produced on licence in Stellenbosch, but the closing of the Luyt’s premises on the North Coast, due to a “misplaced expectancy of support from the Ballito community”, is still a sad thing.
I suppose the lesson is: support your local brewery. This series, which should comprise four or five parts over the next couple months, will hopefully help put that message across. Give it a read here.