As South Africans started to think how they were going to get buzzed from pineapples and sugar, craft brewers faced more challenging problems, such as what to do during lockdown when you can't get in the brewery. For Tsikwe Molobye, founder of Stimela Brewing Co, lockdown prohibition meant it was time to inspire a new generation of potential craft brewers by sharing his expertise.
"My hope during this lockdown is that we will see a birth of new home brewers who would carry on crafting their own brews at home and ultimately new home brew clubs mushrooming out of Soweto, Mamelodi, Tembisa, Gugulethu, Umlazi, Montshiwa etc. This can only mean great things for the craft beer, cider and winemaking industry in South Africa!"
To help budding South African homebrewers get started with readily available ingredients and equipment Tsikwe has put together an ebook - Lockdown Dranks.
In Lockdown Dranks Tsikwe shares valuable insights into what yeast is and its essential role in the fermentation of beers and other mildly alcoholic drinks. With this knowledge in hand you can then get down to making your own beers at home.
The book outlines recipes for making twelve drinks - including classic ginger beer and pineapple beer, as well as 'hard lemonades', fruit wines and more complicated traditional brews from across Africa including Tej (Ethiopian honey wine) and the intriguing Maasai honey wine. The recipes are designed to be able to be made by anyone at home with ordinary, easily available kitchen equipment and ingredients.
Recipes are detailed, easy to follow and also include a handy indicator of the approximate alcoholic percentage you can achieve from your brew. We also loved Tsikwe's insights into the importance of yeast and fermentation in ancient African cultures such as the San, Zulu and ancient Egyptian belief systems and his tips on foods to pair your beers with.
The ebook costs R30 and you can buy it online at the Lockdown Dranks website. You can also watch Tsikwe demonstrating how to make the brews on his youtube channel Lockdown Dranks.