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Updated: Mar 23, 2020

Return of the King

It’s always been about the hops.

The history of US craft-brewed IPA’s are no different really to that of our King’s Blockhouse, albeit that our original is still fairly young. The US West Coast IPA style that we based our King’s Blockhouse on which was largely defined by arresting bitterness, intense hop aromas and higher alcohol content, played a critical role in the growth of craft beer in South Africa.

Back in 2011, a time when the South African craft beer movement was still in its infancy and 30-something breweries were playing it safe with pale lagers and blonde ales, we launched Devil’s Peak King’s Blockhouse West Coast IPA, distinctively marked by in-your-face flavours, although most people at the time had never tasted anything quite like Blockhouse, the beer was an instant hit.

Head Brewer, JC Steyn recalls “We credit a lot of its success to timing and its distinctiveness at the time of release. When we released the King’s Blockhouse IPA there was very little, if anything, that could compare to its explosive aromas and flavours.”

Given its cult following and award-winning status, the beer has gone through some serious scrutiny over the years. Some have claimed we changed the hop bill, others, aromas and bitterness.

JC continues “We have never compromised on the quality of the key ingredients that define King’s Blockhouse, but at the beginning of 2019 we acknowledged that the craft beer drinker in South Africa has evolved and it was time for some introspection.”

In part, this has been due to the calibre and diversity of Explorer and Afrofunk beers we have released over the past couple of years as well as the many other local breweries joining the fray in releasing a diverse range of world-class beers.

So, we asked ourselves: “What is it about the King that we hold so dear?” Is it that we have always aimed to make our drinkers feel like they’ve stuck their faces in a pile of tropical and citrus fruits or that they enjoy the delicate balance between bitterness and hop aroma?

Our curiosity to know what the addition of Mosaic hops, a longtime favourite of the brewery, would bring to King’s Blockhouse, as well as the inclusion of Cryo Hops, would be insatiable. Also, why stop at one dry hopping, when a double is going to add to the juicy finish of the beer?

This resulted in us tweaking the recipe to a double dry-hopped IPA with even more hop flavour and aroma. Mosaic, Cascade, Citra and Amarillo Cryo hops have been incorporated to the already very celebrated hop bill of Cascade, Citra, Amarillo and Columbus.

Further to that and most importantly considering the nature of hops, an IPA, as all craft connoisseurs will tell you, is best drunk fresh. With that in mind, we have added a ‘born by date’ on the label, allowing the consumer to check the date on which the beer was packaged. The fresher the better. We will be brewing this brew in smaller batches and working closely with the trade on trying to deliver on Fresh is Best.

Considering the intrinsic of this beer, we’ve adorned the pack with a new-look befitting a King.

This is what an IPA should be. Long Live the King!

Double Dry Hopped

For this Brew we’ve included Mosaic, Cascade, Citra and Amarillo Cryo hops to the already very celebrated hop bill of Cascade, Citra, Amarillo and Columbus.

Fresh is Best

Brewed in smaller and more frequent batches to ensure you have the best check out the ‘Born By Date’ on the label, to ensure the freshness. 

Fit For a King

Tastes as good as good-looking feels!  Superior liquid deserves to be adorned with looks befitting a king. 

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