We went to Clarens this weekend for their 4th annual beer tasting festival. Many of South Africa’s top micro-breweries were there with their best home brews. A lot of people were at the festival and it was indeed very festive! It looked like it was going to rain but luckily it didn’t because there wouldn’t have been enough shelter for everyone.
Last year we got to vote for our favourite beers but this year the top 3 beers were already chosen the day before. If I could vote this year, my favourite beer would be Clarens Brewery’s pineapple cider. (Technically not a beer.) A close second would be De Garve’s Rasberry delight beer. There was a really strong beer called “hammer of Thor” which tasted like firecrackers and coal. (Well, that’s what it tasted like to me.)
Clarens is a small arty town surrounded by the Maluti mountains in the Eastern Free State. There are many art galleries scattered around town as well as many interesting, unique restaurants. During the weekend of the beer festival (or any other special event) the town is always packed! And this year was no different. We had to drive through for the day from Ladybrand because there was absolutely no accommodation left in Clarens! The road from Ladybrand to Clarens is very beautiful with all the sandstone rock formations, fields of mielies and kilometers of yellow sunflowers.
Marc injured his knee ligaments so he has been on crutches since Thursday. So, unfortunately he had to go to the beer festival on crutches. He certainly didn’t let this stop him from drinking beer and having a good time! He strapped his glass with cable straps and a clip to his shorts so he could move around with his crutches and beer. This beer strap contraption was quite a hit! The crutches also got us to the front of the queue! The security guard at the entrance of the festival fetched Marc from the middle of the line, and we were both allowed to enter the festival area first! We bumped into friends we haven’t seen in ages. It was such a lekker day!
And I just found out today that the photo I tweeted at the festival on Saturday won a mixed case of craft beer from League of Beers. Yay! 🙂 You can order craft beer online with them and they deliver for free anywhere in South Africa. A case of craft beer is not a bad present idea for someone. Check out their website: www.leagueofbeers.com
Above is my winning twitter photo. A few men at the festival were dressed in old military uniforms. They told Marc that his beard will go well with one of their uniforms. They belong to a club in Bloemfontein that have a huge collection of vintage/antique military clothing. If you’re by any chance into old war gear and South Africa’s war history that’s no longer taught in schools, here’s their website: www.sawavv-vrijstaat.co.za
If you want to stay in Clarens for the 2015 beer festival you will have to book your accommodation as soon as the date is announced. Check out their website for more info : www.clarenscraftbeerfest.com