best beer in africa
South African beer wins best beer in Africa. Image: Pexels/ Jess Low

Home » Cape Winelands beer wins Best Beer in Africa title

Cape Winelands beer wins Best Beer in Africa title

A Cape Winelands beer was named the Best Beer in Africa at the recent African Beer Cup event held in Cape Town.

best beer in africa
South African beer wins best beer in Africa. Image: Pexels/ Jess Low

Many South Africans are, among many other things, avid beer lovers. Capetonians do not have to drive far to taste the best beer in Africa. A Cape Winelands beer walked away with the honour of being the best on the continent.

Soul Barrel Brewing Co. is a small craft brewery has recently earned the title of Best Beer in Africa during an event held in Cape Town. The brewery is in the heart of the Cape Winelands outside of Franschhoek. It is located within the old tank walls of the former Drakenstein Cooperative Winery. In addition to hops, malt, and and old world barrel fermentation processes, the brewery also uses local ingredients such as fruits, fynbos, and agricultural products.


The African Beer Cup is an annual competition held for the purpose of seeking out the best beers on the African continent. This year, judges from 16 different countries evaluated the 251 entries over three days. The awards evening was held at the Jack Black Brewing Company in Cape Town on Saturday, 25 May.

Altogether, The judges awarded 10 gold medals, 29 silver medals and 27 bronze medals across 32 categories. There is a maximum of one gold, one silver and one bronze award per category on condition that a beer qualifies for such an award. For this reason not all of them are necessarily awarded. The ten gold medallists went head to head in a Best of Show round to determine the Best Beer in Africa and Soul Barrel Brewing Co. won the title of Best Beer in Africa. Rather than a trophy, the winner receives a custom painting to celebrate their win. Cape Town artist Ann Gadd created this year’s painting.


The judges in the competition evaluate the beer in accordance with the 2021 BJCP Guidelines. Surprisingly, there is a category for non-alcoholic beer. To list, here are some notable winners from this year’s event by category:

  • Non-alcoholic beer: Darling Brew – Bronze; Heineken Beverages Sedibeng – Silver
  • International lager: The South African Breweries Limited – Bronze; Darling Brew – Silver; Seychelles Breweries Limited – Gold
  • Pale Commonwealth beer: Darling Brew – Bronze; Crafty Chameleon – Silver
  • Historical beer: Crafty Dee’s Brewing Co. – Silver
  • Fruit beer: Afro Caribbean Brewing Company (Summer Cherry) – Bronze; Woodstock Brewery (Slice of Life) – Silver
  • Spiced beer: Woodstock Brewery – Bronze; Specialty Beers (Ghana) Limited – Silver
  • Wood beer: Hazeldean Brewing Co. – Bronze; Claude Gluecklich Beer – Silver; Woodstock Brewery – Gold
  • African grain beer: Okavango Craft Brewery – Bronze; Soul Barrel Brewing – Silver

Darling Brew, one of the well-known craft beer brands in SA, walked away with a total of nine awards on this occasion. They won the title of Best Local Craft Beer at the 2023 Kfm Best of the Cape awards.