Brewery Name: Riot Beer
Location: Western Cape
What is your current position at your brewery, and how did you get started in the craft brewing industry?
Head Brewer – I learnt my brewing skills in London way back before there were any craft breweries in SA, continued that work here in Cape Town from 2014.
Has Covid-19 and the lockdown had an impact on your brewery? If so, what impact and how have you responded?
Yes it’s changed us forever! I think the thing that hit/struck us the most was the absolute lack of organisation from our government when simply “switching off” industries. It was obvious to us that we were on our own without any support form the leadership in this country, so we have had to make redundancies, seek solace in our partners (who have got our backs) and entertain new distribution opportunities…that said, we still kicking (In true RIOT spirit and grit) and want to continue forth despite our challenges!
What’s new at your brewery?
Right now – during this economic crisis – it’s survival mode, but of course nothing works better than getting keen craft beer enthusiasts to support new beer world class beer releases. We’re planning some interesting new colabs with our partner Darling Brew and will also hopefully get up north to Jozi in the new year to work with Naked Face Brewing on some real big loud IPA’s…
What’s the best part of being a part of the South African craft brewing community?
In the old days it was a “in the trenches” type camaraderie between all the brewers, everyone looking to be making the best beer possible. RIOT Beer loved this as this is our ultimate strength, making really top notch quality beers. I do think South African brewing has lost our way a little though on this, we seem to be making beer as a community that supports cost price and not pure quality for the end consumer. I hope we all become conscious again to how important it is to make beers that are interesting, but also delicious!
Name your favourite food and beer pairing.
RIOTS VALVE IPA & Baha Taco’s “Fish Taco” – simply a summer days fantasy that one…
What’s your biggest accomplishment unrelated to your job?
Being able to break free from the norms of society and what is TOLD to us by inexperienced leaders as the “Way to Live” – what do they know – they are programs of the same software shall we say – I encourage EVERYONE at all times to break free of these shackles and concepts that have no foot hold in reality. Everything is possible, BUT there has to be an open mind behind it..
What’s your favourite beer from another brewery?
I have two favourites, Stones Ruination Double IPA and Firestone Walker’s Union Jack IPA.
What do you like to do in your time away from the brewery?
Mainly reading modern philosophy and working on the challenges I set for myself. The more I find things that are hard to deal with, the more I get to understand that this is where the magic is. Probably why 99% of the world miss it!
What’s the most memorable travel destination at which you’ve had a chance to sample the local beer?
I’m so very grateful to have had the privilege to drink beer on all continents (except Antarctica), but for me it is still the city that made this chapter of my life happen, good old London – home to the cask ale and most of the world’s favourites!