The British and Beer: What you need to know

  • 30 December 2015

The UK is known for many things – its history, landmarks, food and, of course, its beer. With a proud history of brewing dating back to 54 BC, when hosting British guests, beer knowledge is a must.

1. Britain is best known for its ales

So, what is an ale? Well, it’s a flat (or uncarbonated) beer, which is normally darker than a lager. There are many different versions, from bitter to mild, all varying in taste – luckily for you, most of them are readily available from our local craft breweries.

2. Pints not draughts

In the UK beer is ordered in pints, which is basically another word for a draught (the size is ever so slightly different). In the UK they also regularly drink half-pints, and even quarter-pints which are called gills, minis or quarts. So, beware – if your British guests ask for a quart they are expecting a small glass, not a large bottle.

3. Beware: Our beers are strong

Our ales have an alcohol percentage (or ABV) of between 4.5% and 8%. In the UK, ales are a lot weaker with an average of between 3% and 5%. A good idea would be to inform your British guests of the strength of the beer before they take their first gulp.

South Africa has plenty of fantastic craft breweries around the country. If you would like to impress your beer-loving guests, consider recommending a brewery tour – most breweries offer them – or simply stocking your favourite local brew.