INTERNATIONAL BREWERY: Afro-Caribbean Brewing Company, Kenilworth, Cape Town, South Africa
BEER: Hopsession (4.3% ABV)
HOST BREWERY (UK): Everards Brewery, Leicester
BEER NO. 7
Shawn started brewing a decade ago, while living in rural South Korea – something of a desert when it came to buying good beer.
Originally from Canada, he moved to South Africa in 2010 and quickly became involved in the burgeoning beer scene – taking the reins of Cape Town’s home brewing club, serving on the University of Cape Town’s brewing team and running brewing courses for new beer enthusiasts.
Greg caught the craft-beer bug on a trip to the west coast of the United States and began to transform his Caribbean restaurant, Banana Jam Cafe, into Cape Town’s premier craft-beer hang-out.
Pretty soon, drinking other people’s beer wasn’t enough, so Greg started to make his own – his talent for cooking clearly also stretching to the brew kettle.
After years of home brewing together, Shawn and Greg now produce a range of unique ales on their 450-litre system in the brewpub which Greg built above his restaurant.
Just as they are known for their passion and general geekery, when it comes to beer, Afro-Caribbean Brewing Company is known as a place at the forefront of Cape Town’s craft-beer scene.
Staples include the Coconut IPA, Bacon Chilli Ale and the popular Hopsession.
What the local beer fanatics really love is that they will always find something new on tap.
Hopsession was created from a love of hops, but made to quench the South African thirst.
Shawn said: “The local craft-beer scene is still in its infancy, and many drinkers (used to their lagers) are still acclimatising to the big hops of an IPA.
“Hopsession – a generously hopped pale ale – was designed to introduce drinkers to hops, while still being the sort of beer you can sip plenty of, in the sun or rain.”
Normally brewed with a selection of American hops, the Wetherspoon festival version will showcase English hops – giving the brew a fresh, earthy spice in place of its usual pine and passion fruit character.