We will start off easy — it’s like a guided beer meditation. Picture all of these colours in your mind and choose the one that you gravitate towards.
What does your beer-drinking schedule look like? Tell us if you’re a casual chugger, a celebration cheerser or a routine sipper.
Pick out the subject that gets your brain buzzing, and your heart pumping.
Just for a minute, think of yourself from a friend’s perspective. How would they describe you in a word?
When not at work, what gives you joy and sets your heart on fire?
Which of the below food mentions is getting your taste buds salivating and your stomach grumbling?
P.S. Check out our menu for these mouthwatering meals and more.
Beer is a beautiful thing. So are words. Which words do you feel confirm your craft beer relationship?
Here are your results. Get to know which 1000 Hills Brewing Company craft beer you are most like.
The life of the party and the one encouraging all of the party antics, you’re most like our malty Amber Ale. Fiery and full of energy, we would most likely catch you doing somersaults in the garden on a summer day or cheering on your friend at karaoke. Always joyful and kind, you are the supportive friend we all need in life.
Shake your pom-poms and learn more about the Cheerleader.
You’re the intellectual, who loves a good math pun and marches to the beat of your own drum — just like our rich India Pale Ale. A little bit quirky, you’re always up to learn about the world around you. Keep the knowledge alive, academic.
We know you love a good read, so take some time to explore the facts about our fruity, yet spicy IPA, the Graduate.
Hey, good-looking! You’re like our Belgian Ale: a dark brew with hints of caramel and toffee. Bewildering, and sweet in nature – your friends may be convinced you are made entirely of chocolate. You love to sing, drink and play. You’re a classic and a crowd-pleaser. Stay invigorating.
Take a look at what goes into making the F.E.S the delicious Belgian Ale it is.
As a great leader and decisive personality, you match this Gold Star Pilsner. Clear, crisp and to the point, you are ready to make all of the important decisions. We can imagine you as a pillar of advice and a great motivational speaker. You have big opinions and have no problem sharing what you think. Salute to you.
Make a great decision now and have a peek at the Dean, crafted to perfection in our brewery.
Loved by the crowds, you are the friendly neighbourhood hero, the American Pale Ale. You are the guy or girl everyone wants to be friends with, high-five and cheer on. Light and refreshing, you’re the easy-going individual that no one can resist inviting to the braai. Way to be the life of the party!
Want to read more about the Quarterback? Get reading.
Well done for completing our craft beer quiz and discovering your inner beer characteristics. Now the hard part is over and it’s time to get drinking. Come and visit us at the Classroom Café. Our brewers can’t wait to get you tasting their expertly crafted creations.
If you’re an experienced beer drinker, odds are by now you already know what you like to drink. Even in the craft side of things. But the question is, are you making the most of your beer drinking experience? Essentially, two factors can change the way you drink your beer. And these factors are your beer pouring style and your choice of beer glass. Both of which can be corrected so you can enjoy the most magnificent brew of your life. Ready to get pouring? Then let’s find out more. (Explore our range of craft beers.)
Did you know there is a special technique for pouring beer? Here’s how you should pour your favourite brewski so it presents perfectly:
Tip your beer glass at a 45-degree angle.
Pour your beer slowly, making sure the stream flows down the side of the glass.
When the glass is half full, straighten it and pour the rest of the beer into the centre to create a head.
Take a sip and enjoy your perfect brew!
Not only is there a beer pouring technique for great presentation, but there’s a special glass for each type of beer too to further perfect the ex-beer-ience, both aesthetically and practically.
A pint glass is wider at the mouth than at the base and is a common choice of glass for many beer types, including the Amber Ale. (Taste our flavourful Amber Ale, the Cheerleader.) The benefit of the pint glass is that it neither enhances nor detracts from a beer style, so you can consider it a jack-of-all-trades kind of beer glass.
The classic beer mug featuring a handle is generally used for pale ales, like our APA the Quarterback. Unlike other beer glasses, beer mugs tend to have thick glass walls, giving them extra durability and insulation. More insulation means your brew can be kept cooler for longer – which is always a bonus when drinking a refreshing, lighter-bodied beer.
A great glass for aromatic beers, the snifter is designed with a wide middle to open the beer up and release its spicy and sweet smells. We like this style of glass for our IPA, the Graduate, as it accentuates its notes of passion fruit, litchi and grapefruit.
The flared Pilsner glass is tall and thin with a slightly flared mouth, and is shaped to enhance the sparkle, clarity and bubbles of its namesake beer – while maintaining a signature head of foam. Have you tried our golden Pilsner, the Dean? This brew is the authority on all things beer.
The hallmark features of the chalice beer glass are its bulbous body and flared mouth, giving it a dramatic appearance. Its wide mouth helps diffuse strong aromas and bold hoppy notes, typical of Belgian Ales like the FES. This brew is strong and dark with hints of caramel and toffee, and is bittered with Perle & Fuggles hops. Learn more about our famous brew crew.
Beer pouring is an important part of the beer-drinking process. Without the right pour and the right glass, you might as well be drinking cider! (Wink wink.) Get acquainted with the cool kids on the block at 1000 Hills Brewery.
It’s Heritage Month. A time to celebrate our country’s rich cultures. A time to show appreciation for your family roots. And a time to – you guessed it – feast, feast, feast. With Heritage Day coming up on 24 September, why not get experimenting with lekker beer and braai food combos? We’ve outlined four satisfying slap-up meals for your Braai Day celebration. So go on, start sampling! (Get acquainted with the brew crew.)
When savouring a prime piece of steak, the Foreign Exchange Student (FES) is a worthy drink partner. If you want to chow some lekker sirloin, ribeye or fillet this Heritage Day, crack one of these boys open to enjoy with your feast. The full-bodied Belgian Ale’s dark-malt profile, hints of sweet fruitiness, caramel undertones, and mild bitterness from Perle & Fuggles hops will balance the flavours of the steak perfectly. And if you want to add some extra flavour to your meat, you can also add it to your basting sauce for a sweet and savoury treat.
This one’s for the Pilsner fans out there! Pilsner is a dryer beer, helping cut through the buttery flavours of fish. So if you’re a fish-lover or pescetarian, you’ll find the Dean to be a refreshing and crisp accompaniment to your braaied fish meal. Prawns, line fish – you name it. And if you want to expand your Braai Day feast to include fried fish too, the Dean works a charm for beer-battered hake. Bonus!
A medium-heavy protein, pork is bold in flavour and high in fat. With hints of passion fruit and litchi and a kick of spice, the Graduate’s full floral flavour profile pairs well with pork, adding to its richness. The strong presence of hops also balances the fattiness of the meat. Pair the Graduate with pork ribs, sausages, and chops for a Heritage Day meal to remember.
When eating a light vegetable meal, no beer goes down as well as the Quarterback American Pale Ale. Fruity and bittered with Centennial hops, the Quarterback’s bright flavour notes cleanse the palate, making braai salads taste even more refreshing. Crack open a bottle during the starter course for a winning lead up to your Heritage Day feast. And if you’re a vegetarian, you can stick with it for your main course too. That’s a win-win in our books.
Want to celebrate your South African heritage with delicious braai food and complementary craft beers, brewed locally? Pick up your favourite brewskis from 1000 Hills Brewery or nearby stockists, and serve ice-cold for a memorable and (and mouthwatering) Braai Day feast.
Top o’ the month to ya! With St.Patrick’s Day known for celebrating all things Irish and boozy, why not start making some of your own traditions by making beer cocktails? Before you shudder at the thought, beer serves as a fabulous alternative to most mixed drinks. Get ready to be astounded and spirited away with these tricks for delicious drafts that deliver.
When commencing your adventures into the world of beer cocktails, be sure to brush up on your understanding of all the craft beer styles. For a great guide, explore the types of craft beer available. Once you are familiar with Amber Ales, Belgian Ales, India Pale Ales, American Pale Ales, and Pilsners, you can start matching these beers to your tastes and mix away to your heart’s content.
While there is an art to craft beer, there is also a trick to mixology with beers. Think you have what it takes to give your St. Patrick’s Day a pinch and pour of luck? Try your hand at these mixes and you may discover you have a newfound talent!
When you are matching beers with complementary flavours, look to pair the strongest characteristic or flavours present. You will want to make your drink mostly beer-based, with other mixes or juices thrown in. Beer also serves well as a replacement for most cocktail ingredients, just be sure to match the palates accordingly.
When you are creating your cocktails, mix or shake all the base spirits and juices together first, then add your beer of choice. You don’t want to make the mistake of shaking a carbonated drink with beer!
If you are thinking of prepping your drinks cabinet for the long-run, consider making syrup. A syrup is a great way to add flavour to any cocktail by preserving taste in concentrated form. Typically, they get made by dissolving sweet substances like sugar or honey — and now you can with beer! Some great examples to use include fruity ales, tarter tones and flavourful stouts.
These beers are quite neutral in flavour compared to other beers, deemed a safer option for those experimenting for the first time. They add just enough of a tingle and taste to enhance any cocktail.
A shandy is a blended drink, with an equal parts ratio. Just mix equal measures of any citrus juice, soda, cloudy lemonade, or orange-based drink, perfect for a bit of summer zest in every sip.
If you have an IPA which is quite hoppy, look for the hints of citrus, herbal, floral or bitterness. A citrusy IPA sips nicely with a lemon or an orange-tinged spirit, whereas a herbal beer blooms on your palate with a botanical gin.
These beers range in aromatic palates. Think traces of bitter, herbs, lemon and even smoky sensations. Lager based cocktails would mix the same as IPA, so think of adding dashes of summery tangs.
These tall, dark and handsome types love to mingle with suggestions of roasted and touches of toasted flavours. Pair with deep coffee or chocolate liqueurs or syrups.
Last but not least, for those wanting the unexpected with their creative crafty cocktails — try a beer float. Scoop some vanilla ice cream into a glass and pour a chocolate stout over to make an adult boozy float. You can even use a straw to enjoy this drink, one savoured sip at a time.
May your St. Patrick’s Day have all the luck creating and sharing your craft beer cocktails with your loved ones. For information on where you can find our locally crafted beer, explore our local stockists.
Calling all beer lovers! We are gearing up to start brewing, grafting and drafting with our students soon to arrive. What better way to start the new year with some beer cheer and fun facts? Beer production is a revered practice around the world, but was in fact around for quite some time. As craft beer brewers, we not only share drinks but knowledge and appreciation for this fine invention. Grab a seat, pour over the amazing facts from brewers past as we delve into our history books on the importance of beer.
Beer production lends itself to many milestones in human history. Aside from being a coveted beverage of many, it links to the development of civilization, currency, health and nutrition, and even intertwined with religious ties. If you don’t believe us, read up on the health benefits of beer. You can thank us later.
There are many findings to suggest that the discovery of beer populated many places over. Evidence traces beer back to grain harvesting of cereals to as early as 10,000 B.C. During this time, nomadic civilizations slowly developed into agrarian societies, settling and domesticating lands and lifestyles. Along with this, more grains like wheat, rice, barley and maize came to light, as well as their ability to ferment. Developing and refining this process in turn simultaneously assisted with new agricultural practices and technologies (oh, the wonder of beer).
Beverages of an alcoholic nature, however, link back to two different societies. In China, about 9,000 years ago, an alcoholic drink documented to contain rice, honey and fruit possibly found its way from middle eastern origins. Actual beer production is most likely claimed by Sumerians in 1800 B.C. from ancient Mesopotamia, or current day southern Iraq. Beer was so important to their society, they even had a goddess of beer, Ninkasi. Not only were recipes a part of oral rituals, but beer featured as a nutrient-rich drink (and most likely safer for consumption than animal-tainted waterways.
Beer features later again in Egyptian civilization, but as currency. Those working alongside the Nile river received payment in drinks rations. Then, beer was more than a recreational beverage, but a nutritious drink that children, peasants and the almighty pharaohs consumed on a daily basis. Not to put it lightly, but beer very well may just be the foundation of the great pyramids.
Beer reappears again in religious practice again in the sixth century CE. Though monks lived lives devoted to God and goodwill, they too partook in beer production. History may have deemed this time the Middle Ages, but for beer, it was the dawn of a new era. Living in remote monasteries and required to live off of their own work, Christian monks discovered the benefits of hops as a preservative. Years later, these breweries still operate and celebrate their monastic beginnings and refined processes.
Many centuries later, beer remains enjoyed all over the world. Whether in larger commercial companies or smaller businesses, beer production is constantly going through innovation and reimagining of flavours, ingredients and techniques. Especially for the brewers in the craft beer industry, it is an ever-evolving practice which in turn developed its own culture.
We hope you enjoyed brushing up on your beer production knowledge. To extend your lesson (and get extra credit) visit us for a craft beer lesson and tour. For information on the 1000 Hills Brewing Company, contact us.
Ah, the quest to quench your thirst. For many, understanding what makes an ideal craft beer is ever sought. There are many factors, and sometimes even biases to beer. But, we’re here to tap into the world of brewing and help you understand what makes the best craft beer.
From newbies to connoisseurs, craft beer holds a certain mystique — if not an insider culture — not everyone feels privy to. To first understand how to approach conceptualising the best craft beer, we explain the importance of ingredients, as well as the differences between macro and craft beer. Once these basic concepts are tucked into your beer boffin belt, the concept of what makes a good craft is easy to understand. The next step to understanding the breakdown of beer: the families and flavours. Between the two main brew families, ales and lagers, there is a spectrum of subtle differences that develop signature styles and sensations. Both range from being pale in colour to rich, dark hues, due to the individual malts chosen and used.
With a range of spicy, fruity and floral flavours, ales are a popular choice among many. This variety of beer is produced by top-fermenting yeast, developed in warmer temperatures about 15 to 25 degrees Celsius
This end of the spectrum uses bottom-fermenting yeasts, in colder conditions — about 9 to 15 degrees Celsius — for longer. Lagers typically have a cleaner, crisper and rounder taste than ales.
The best way to summarise the key points of a beer? Sniff, stare, sip, swish, savour, and swallow. From colour to flavour, body and mouthfeel, there are so many elements to appreciate. When done correctly, drinking a cold craft is an experience. Explore how to judge your next brew like a professional in our quick guide to craft beer tasting.
Microbreweries are built around two main things: the process and the product. While the actual drink itself is the prize, it’s the culture and the creative process that becomes a story and, ultimately, an experience.
Craft brewers centre their final product through channelling the importance of the process, as well as adding new elements. Whether it’s experimenting with traditional techniques, trying new ingredients to create a new flavour palette, or brewing to pair with food, each batch is a journey. Brewers work to develop, discuss and merge ideas, using the brewing process as a way to fully explore the full potential of their craft.
Brewers want to ensure the culture of craft beer is understood and appreciated, as well as enjoyed. From development to drinking, the beer process carries the heart and soul of the beer in the taste, experience of the product and knowledge of the process. Just visit a brewery or explore a craft market, you are sure to find a beer aficionado ready to bond over brew. As craft brewers focus on establishing a better product through shared knowledge and experience, the next important step to deciding the best craft beer: authentic ingredients to the region.
Craft brewers define their unique flavour by encapsulating their brews with local flavours. Everything from the deciding which hops to use (avoiding cheap substitutions like rice or corn) to sourcing the local water (the pH balance and minerals are important here). Craft beer is based on being authentic with the ingredients, stories and experience for both the producer and consumer. We only source the best ingredients for our beers and are always on the lookout for fantastic local ingredients.
The answer to this question? It all comes down to personal preference. Come and visit us to decide which elements make the best craft beer for you. Contact us to book a brewery tour and beer tasting, available Friday to Sunday by appointment. We’ll happily share our knowledge over a crafty pint.
It’s official! We’ve got some new roomies. After secret plots and unforeseen delays, Pietermaritzburg-based companies Clockwork Brewhouse and Doctrine Brewing have joined us. Three local brands working out of one craft beer brewery — it’s a dream come true. With Clockwork’s Euro-trip inspired selection and Doctrine’s bespoke flavours featuring alongside our tasty class of brews — The Graduate, The FES, The Dean, The Quarterback, The Cheerleader and The Rebel — there’s no better place to spend your weekends.
Established in 2014, Clockhouse Brewhouse bases its belief that beer should be an experience, not just a beverage. To make this vision possible, the company forges its identity through focusing on the love of brewing. They experiment with new approaches and styles to continue the quest for quality over quantity. Owner/Brewer Megan Gemmell will be bringing in five more names to the tap room.
We are doubly delighted with this partnership as Megan will not only serve as a resident brewer, but a lecturer! She will be teaching our advanced program students their beer and brewing course. We are quite proud that we are the only culinary school in South Africa that integrates brewing into our unique curriculum. We are sure her presence will be most beneficial to our students (and our taste buds).
Doctrine Brewing prides itself on showcasing under-represented styles and flavours. Owner/Brewer Dion van Huyssteen operates Doctrine Brewing while searching for interesting combinations. As such, they enjoy producing both high and low alcohol beer with novel flavour profiles to create a unique taste experience. Their trademark taste centres on the belief that quality ingredients are non-negotiable. The doctrine they live by? “If you try to please everyone, you’ll end up exciting no one”. We praise you marching to the beat of your own (beer) drum.
Doctrine Brewing brings along their four masterfully crafted and aptly-named beers to our tap room.
While the new companies add to our exciting tasting trifecta, they will remain autonomous in keeping their own identity. These joint forces will mean even more exciting beers and experiences on the horizon for all our beer beginners and boffins. Together, the three breweries will share our new equipment and tap room. This will be the first time for both bottle-based breweries to have a tap room to showcase their beers. And we couldn’t be happier to share our heart and home with these crafty creatives.
We look forward to welcoming and hosting you alongside our new brewers in arms. Come and visit us with our revamped tap room brimming with new experiences and memories. Cheers to that!
Our restaurant and craft beer brewery are open Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from 8:30AM to 4PM. For bookings, hop over to our contact page.
Father’s Day is coming up soon. Have you given thought to what you want to give your dad? Perhaps you’d like to create something special for him that combines his love of tasty food and craft beer? Yes, you’ve got the idea! We’re talking about a brewery beer cookbook. One filled with easy and delicious recipes. We’re sure Dad will enjoy flipping through pages of beer-inspired treats this Father’s Day, and start looking forward to all the things he can whip up for the family when lockdown gets lifted. (Yes, the beer contains alcohol, but you can rest assured the treats won’t!) Get in touch with us about our expected brewery reopening dates.
Nothing’s better than a fresh-out-the-oven loaf of bread to enjoy with a home-cooked meal. This recipe is one of our favourites (because it includes our brewery beer, of course!).
Step 1: Leave the can of beer sitting out so it warms to room temperature. (And try not to feel tempted to take a sip!)
Step 2: Fry the bacon in a pan and set it aside to cool.
Step 3: Preheat the oven to 190℃.°
Step 4: Using butter, grease a loaf pan (9″ x 5″ x 2½”.) and set aside.
Step 5: Sift the dry ingredients into a bowl, and mix well.
Step 6: Crumble the bacon and add it, along with the honey and cheddar cheese, to the dry ingredients, and mix again.
Step 7: Pour the beer into the bowl, stirring frequently to create a thick batter.
Step 8: Scoop the batter into the bread pan, and add a few ¼-inch cold butter pats on top.
Step 8: Place the bread pan in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes so the top is golden brown.
Step 9: Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. Then remove the loaf and leave to cool fully on a cooling rack.
Step 10: Serve with butter and honey for a mouth-watering side.
Nothing says ‘hurry home for dinner’ quite like perfectly cooked chicken with a vibrant honey-mustard sauce. This meal is quick and easy – not to mention a delicious choice the whole family is bound to love.
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 190℃.
Step 2: Making the sauce. Add the mustard, honey, beer, cornstarch, garlic, and lemon juice to a mixing bowl. Add in a pinch of salt and pepper, (about ¼ tsp salt and ½ tsp pepper). Whisk together until smooth.
Step 3: Cooking the chicken. Melt the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat. While the butter is melting, sprinkle some salt and pepper on the chicken breast. Add the chicken to the pan and sear until the breasts are brown on both sides.
Step 4: Pour the sauce over the chicken and pop in the oven, allowing it to bake for about 25 minutes.
Step 5: Dish up and enjoy with rice, baked potatoes, or a side salad.
Who doesn’t love a fresh, powdered doughnut? This recipe for a home-made batch of brewery beer doughnuts is super simple, and a lot of fun!
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 190℃.
Step 2: Melt the butter in a pot and move it to the side so it can cool.
Step 3: Sift the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
Step 4: Using another mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, melted butter, and beer until blended.
Step 5: Grease the doughnut pan with butter.
Step 6: Pour the liquid mixture into the large mixing bowl with the dry ingredients, and mix until blended.
Step 7: Fill each doughnut cavity with the mixture so they are half full.
Step 8: Place the tray in the oven and bake for about ten minutes. (The doughnuts should not be brown on top.)
Step 9: Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool.
Step 10: Plate up the doughnuts and coat them in powdered sugar for a tasty treat.
There are so many great ways to use beer in cooking and baking. If you decide to create a brewery beer cookbook for Dad, we hope you choose these three easy-to-follow recipes for the front few pages! (Find more ideas for cooking with beer.)
While life may seem a bit topsy-turvy at the moment, there are many upsides to staying at home. Extra time to spend with your family, no more excuses to put off that new hobby, and best of all, uninterrupted relaxation with a cold craft beer in hand. But, if the cabin fever is starting to set in, we’ve got a few crafty ideas to keep you busy. You can even get the kids involved, with supervision, of course. All you need is to drink a few brews (you, not the kids) and keep your bottles. Whether you’ve only got one beer bottle or a whole collection, we have plenty of ways you can upcycle your empties into something creative and useful. Ready to be inspired?
If you have an empty beer bottle and a string of battery operated LED lights, you can create a simple, yet charming lamp. The perfect craft to give your home bar or dinner table a magical ambience. It’s ridiculously easy to put together, too. Once you’ve finished drinking your favourite 1000 Hills Brew, wash out the bottle and remove the label. When it’s dry, all that’s left to do is feed the string lights through the bottle top and flick the switch. Easy! With our brown bottles, you’ll have a gorgeous warm glow, so don’t be shy, make a whole collection.
These days, we’re all trying to be less wasteful. But, with the current situation, the empty soap bottles are piling up. That’s a lot of plastic waste. Don’t worry. This next craft provides a handy and eco-friendly solution. All you need is a soap dispenser pump to fit on your empty beer bottle and voilà. Instead of making more waste, you’ve turned your empty into a reusable soap bottle. You will probably save some money too, buying your liquid soap in bulk.
Of all the things you could do with an empty beer bottle, did you think watering the plants would be one of them? That’s right. This nifty craft will keep your flower pots blooming. It’s another straightforward upcycle, and so useful. Besides removing the label, you don’t need to do too much to prepare the bottle. However, your pot plant will need a little bit of prep.
Start by wetting your soil thoroughly – this will create a seal when you put in your bottle, allowing the water to draw out naturally. Next, dig a narrow hole in the soil, just big enough to insert the neck of your bottle. All that’s left is to fill your beer bottle with water, and then quickly flip it over, pushing the neck firmly and fully into the soil. Repeat these steps when the bottle runs dry, and you’ll never have to worry about your plant wilting. (Only use a watering globe for plants needing a lot of water.)
With a little dressing up, you’ll be able to place your bottles all over. Whether you’re DIY-ing decor for your home or an event, there’s plenty you can do with an empty beer bottle or two (or twenty). Use them as vases, candleholders, or just on their own – your options are endless. There are plenty of ways to dress up your bottles, too. Below are a few of our favourite methods (feel free to mix and match):
For every beer bottle, there’s a bottle cap – and there’s plenty you can do with a collection of popped tops.
Once you’ve gathered a substantial hoard of beer bottle tops, create crafty coasters for your bar. There’s no right or wrong way to make your coasters, either. You could divide your bottle tops into sets of nine, lay them in a square and join them all together using wire. Or, still using nine per coaster, stick the caps onto squares of cork. If you’re feeling adventurous, you could even set your bottle caps in resin. Whichever way you choose, they’ll definitely be a talking point when you’re finally able to invite guests over.
A quick and easy craft, this a fantastic, homemade alternative to tealight candles – and these one-hit wonders will never go to waste. Lay your bottle tops upside down, place a mini wick in each one and pour in melted wax. Next time you need to dim the lights and up the romantic atmosphere, whip these guys out and light ‘em up.
If you’re running out of games to keep the kids busy, use your spent bottle caps to make your own checkers board. You’ll need 24 bottle caps and a square board. Checkers uses an 8×8 board, so mark out your squares and colour every alternate square. Divide your 24 caps in two and paint each set a different colour. Once they’ve all dried, Google the rules and start playing.
Have we given you enough beer bottle crafts to keep busy? If you’re running out of bottles, you can find our school of beers at selected local stockists (when they re-open). Check out our flavours to decide which of our brews is right for you.
Ho ho ho and a bottle of beer (or two). ‘Tis the season to be giving, and you can’t go wrong giving the gift of craft beer. There’s no denying, beers make the perfect stocking fillers – after all, they’re just the right shape to slip into any size stocking. Ideal, really. No doubt all of you with craft beer-loving friends and relatives have plenty of practice wrapping their favourite 1000 Hills Brewing Company flavour in a pretty ribbon. But this year, we’re going to help you take your festive gifting to the next level. Stick with us and our ideas for DIY Christmas gifts. It’s a sure way to win gift-giver of the year. At least, the craft beer enthusiasts will think so, anyway.
When it comes to DIY Christmas gifts, it’s all in the presentation. Sure, you could grab a few bottles of The Dean and put them in festive gift bag topped with tissue paper. But where’s the creativity in that? We have a far better idea – reinbeer! No, that wasn’t a typo. With a few inexpensive craft supplies, you can turn your bottles into a herd of cute beer reindeers, reinbeers (see what we did there?). All you need is a selection of our beers, pipe cleaners, mini red pom-poms, googly eyes and craft glue.
Voila! Your reinbeer herd are ready to settle under the tree.
If you love a good pun as much as we do, you’ll love this imaginative take on a beer garden. As DIY Christmas gifts go, this one ticks all the boxes – especially if your craft beer lover is also an avid gardener and cooking enthusiast. Not to mention, this gift is incredibly simple to put together. All you need is a selection of our beers (you can pick them up at a local stockist) and an assortment of potted herbs. Arrange the beers amongst the herbs, either in a box or on a tray, add a cute “beer garden” sign and attach a ribbon. Easy-peasy. And once the herbs are in your garden, it’s the gift that keeps on giving.
Who doesn’t love beer and bread? Edible gifts are always a hit, and if the recipient of your gift can make it themselves, even better. Any opportunity to cook with beer is time well spent in the kitchen, and you can’t go wrong with gifting a beer bread mix. Once you’ve put this gift together, it’s practically a bread in a box mix, but with a personal homemade touch – and beer. All you need is a bottle of The Cheerleader (or try The Fes if you’re looking for a sweeter note), a jar for your dry ingredients, the dry ingredients (measured out correctly) and a label with the cooking instructions and any additional ingredients. We’ve included a simple beer bread recipe below.
*For your beer bread mix gift, layer the above dry ingredients in a glass jar.
*Gift this with your jar of dry ingredients.
*This one’s for the recipient of your gift to organise when they get around to making their bread. Don’t forget to include it on your label or in the recipe.
Last, but not least, you can always fall back on a tried and tested favourite – a homemade hamper. Our brew crew and a selection of your loved one’s preferred nibbles – what’s not to love? A craft beer hamper ticks all the right boxes, and it’s one of the easiest DIY Christmas gifts to put together. Place everything in a pretty box, basket or bag, tie with a ribbon and Bob’s your uncle. Just don’t place this one under the tree if you have pets, they might not be able to resist the temptation of the edible treats inside.
Right, are you feeling inspired to tackle some beery DIY Christmas gifts this year? Find our beers at a local stockist and get crafting. Your friends and family will love the extra effort. If you’re not sure which of our beers to buy, read up on the different flavours beforehand. Merry Christmas everyone!
For many drinkers, a glass is a mere vessel to hold the drink and transport it to the mouth safely. The truth is that the type of glass you use plays a significant role in the taste, temperature regulation and foam retention of the beer, affecting the entire ‘beer’ experience.
For those that are still familiarising themselves with the ins and outs of the various brews, considering which glasses are paired with which beers may be intimidating, but understanding and mastering this wisdom will benefit the experience of every beer that is sipped thereafter. Follow this basic guideline and you’ll pass the glass test with flying colours.
A few factors in the anatomy of a glass will determine how the beer is presented to the drinker. Some of these factors include temperature control, the way in which the foam is supported and the restriction or presentation of aroma to the drinker.
‘Don’t shoot the messenger’ is a common saying, and it does not apply here at all. The rim is the messenger, it delivers the beer to the palate. This is the starting point of the experience. The palate’s first impression should be smooth, therefore the rim should be even and free from cracks, bumps or nicks.
The size of the glass is directly proportional to the alcohol content in the beer. A larger glass holds a lower alcohol beer, a smaller glass holds a higher alcohol beer. Portion perfection!
A glass with a flare towards the top allows the beer to hit the front of the tongue. A common example of such a glass is a pilsner flute, which is the perfect vessel for dark lagers, hybrid beers, speciality beers, wheat beers and wild or sour beers.
This shape supports a large foamy head well, allows for the fullness of the beer’s aroma to come forth and provides a more comfortable drinking experience. The snifter, for example, has a bulb shape. It’s a marvellous choice for speciality beers, strong ales or sour and wild beers.
A concave glass will keep the foamy head concentrated at the top. An example of a concave glass is the pilsner flute, as mentioned previously.
Typically seen in a bowl-shaped glass, a convex curve will capture the aromas of the beer better. A vase has a convex curve, and it works wonders with dark lagers, speciality beers, wheat beers, pilsners and pale lagers.
The bowl can be held to raise the temperature of the beer to optimum levels if required. Paired with a tapered top half, this glass will also deliver the aromas of the beer effectively. Pair with speciality beers, wild/sour beers and strong ales.
The right glass not only affects the sensation, the taste and the temperature of your beer, but it can play an important visual role too. We’re not suggesting there is anything wrong with popping open a bottle and sipping it from the source, but we do suggest keeping in mind the time and place for it. Some beers have marvellous aromas which can be lost if they are consumed straight from the bottle.
At the end of the day, different folks will enjoy different elements of the beer. If the aromas don’t appeal to you, forego the glass that will enhance them. Personalise the experience, and cheers to great beers, whichever glass you choose to use!
Food and beer can be paired to match in flavour according to the same principle as wine, or you can hit the palate with a delicious contrast. If you like to play by the rules, a general guideline is as follows: Ales can generally be paired with anything you would pair red wine with, while lagers can be paired as you would typically pair white wine.
Remember that taste varies from person to person, so be prepared to throw away the rule-book and try new combinations. One of the great qualities of beer is that it allows for a mischievous amount of experimenting, honestly, can you really ruin beer? No. Beer is always great. In order of events, supposing you are hosting guests or looking for a great beer to compliment your meal while dining out, let’s look at a few tried and tested winning relationships between our craft beers and eats.
A great sipping beer that goes perfectly with the famous Yes Chef Deli cheese platter is The Graduate. Serve this brewsky with the starters if you’re entertaining for a pairing that hits the palate like a cool breeze on a summer’s day. Salted nuts and fried foods are other optional camaraderies to this India Pale Ale. As they say, after a few of these, you will be graduating cum laude with a degree in Mandarin.
If you’re looking for the perfect braai accompaniment for a lean steak, a Pale Ale, like The Cheerleader, is your girl. A rich, fatty cut, on the other hand, would demand something darker like a stout or porter, allowing the stronger bitter flavours to cut through the richness of the food the same way the tannins of an oaky cabernet would.
The refreshing crisp, clear taste of a gold star pilsener is the perfect beer to enjoy with fish, so offer it to guests who prefer white meat on the grill. The Dean loves umami flavours, so include sushi, dishes that contain pesto and basil or a traditional ham and cheese toasted sandwich on your menu at meal time.
Having a casual dinner date with friends at home? The two all-American favourites come together for a classic meal. The Quarterback, an American Pale Ale, compliments pizza so beautifully you could serve the pairing at the dinner table in Buckingham Palace. The easy-drinking beer contains a fruity stance flavoured with Cascade and bittered with Centennial. A hit with the cheerleaders, this drink is sure to go down very well, so invite friends over, open a box of pizza, and throw in a few board games for a winning evening.
There is room to play with ideas here: Curry for dinner? Add a beer like The Cheerleader for the perfect fare.
Desserts are best paired with sweet or bitter beers, and a higher carbonation to help refresh the palate between bites. Once again, we highly recommend an experimental outlook and a playful attitude, so open a few beers and see what your palate tells you.
If you like the wine and dessert pairing mindset you can keep your beer slightly more crisp than your dessert. Which means a chocolate dessert with slightly bitter cocoa undertones would take a crisper beer than a custard dessert, which is rather milky and slightly sweeter. If you prefer a good contrast, try a bitter beer with a sweet dish, you might find the undertones to work just perfectly if you choose the right beer. The Fes loves chocolate, and chocolate loves him back, so add this ale to your chocolate dessert for a pairing that absolutely rocks.
For those who love chocolate, add beer and make the treat even more enjoyable. If you are having chocolate that is enriched with flavours like caramel, find a beer with those same undertones. This is precisely why The Fes is such a great ale to pair with chocolate, it boasts hints of caramel and toffee.
Looking for a beer to compliment your next meal at the deli? Visit us at the 1000 Hills Brewery and Yes Chef Deli, it might not be Buckingham Palace, but our food and premium craft beer is certainly fit for a king (we won’t be held liable for any Mandarin that results from drinking our beers). Take a look at our menu here to prepare your food and beer pairing!