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CheeseMonger

S. Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique....

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Capital Craft Beer Academy is pretty awesome. They have a huge SA beer list, with an extensive imported beer list (no American beers, though) plus lots of spirits and many nonalcoholic drinks. They throw a few bones to the wine drinkers too. What I like is that you can get the tap beers in a variety of sizes, including 180 mL. You can thus taste many beers, each running you no more than $2 at that size. In the same group of shops is Bistrot BOER'geoisie, a semi-ironic tribute to South African (read: Afrikaaner) cuisine. The food there was also very good. We had a trio of dips to start--biltong, snoek (a fish) with potatoes, and garlic. I had the classic bobotie and N had lamb potjies (stew).

 

Also in Pretoria, we had a very fancy dinner at a relatively new place called Fermier. This was in the middle of nowhere almost. The address is on the main road, but there's no sign or otherwise indication that you have to take a basically unlit dirt path off the main road. Because there's just one set seating (i.e., people aren't always coming and going), they had a staff member armed with a flashlight to help guide cars. The space is relatively rustic--at one point, wood smoke from fires in the area blew into the restaurant and they had to air out the room. They offer a 7-course tasting menu for R450 pp (between $30-35 at the current exchange rate), with wine pairings for an additional R250 (another $17 or so). I wish I had kept the menu so I could remember everything that I had, but I do know that we started with several types of homemade charcuterie and went on to have a duck egg course, a quail course, a sea bass course, and two lamb preparations.

 

I recommend as well a local chain called Harrie's, which serves breakfast plus savory and sweet pancakes. The pancakes are wrapped around fillings, and are thicker than crepes but thinner than the American breakfast version.

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I really like Nando's, and so does N. Every time she goes to SA she brings back bottles of their hot sauce. They were good for a nice, relatively cheap meal in London too.

 

They seem to have a good foothold in the Baltimore-Washington area. I think it would get a good reception in other parts of the US. Too bad the US branches don't have some of the SA things, but maybe they wouldn't go over so well here.

Nando's sauces are also available through Amazon in the US, and qualify for the Amazon Prime. There are several different varieties offered, including an EXTRA HOT HOT Peri Peri sauce.

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South African Breweries has a market share of about 90% in the local market, and extensive coverage elsewhere in Africa. It's the SAB in SABMiller, which I believe is now a part of Budweiser.

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Since I've now learned how to share photos again, here are a few of beer list from Capital Craft in Pretoria. Sorry it's a bit blurry. Clearly the menu has been drinking. As Stephanie said above, you can get the different sizes of the beer on tap- 5 different sizes, which is pretty cool.

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I took this one because they had Rogue Ale from Oregon, and I've met and worked with those guys before, and was surprised to see it. It was the only American listing- this was back in December 2015...

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And this one...

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The beer menu is 6 or 7 pages long, if I remember correctly. And I clearly need to tend to my manicure.

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