Honingklip Brewery: Spending Bitcoin (Finally) in South Africa

10/28/2014

My boyfriend is obsessed with Bitcoin. (If you haven't heard of Bitcoin it is basically a form of decentralized digital currency. This video does a pretty good job of explaining it if you're interested in learning more.) Anyways, he is constantly looking on Coinmap for places where he can spend his Bitcoin. However, the Bitcoin economy is basically non-existent in South Africa (as well as the rest of Africa) unlike places like Silicon Valley, New York, and many cities in Europe where there are now a good number of physical stores where you can walk in and pay for something with Bitcoin.

You can imagine my boyfriend's enthusiasm when we discovered a place called Honingklip that accepted Bitcoin and was on one of the routes that we were already going to be driving. I matched his enthusiasm once I learned that Honingklip is actually a microbrewery and restaurant.

Seeing as this was one of the only physical shops in the entire Cape area and possibly all of South Africa that claimed to accept Bitcoin we decided to call ahead of time to make sure. To our surprise, the lady who answered the phone acted like it was no big deal at all after we questioned her.

The owners had two elderly dogs who kept us company while we were eating



















Knowing little about this place we headed on over; it was about a 30 min drive from where we currently were in Hermanus. Once we got there we met one of the owners, Analize, to whom we had spoken to on the phone. Again, we were surprised by how nonchalantly she replied when we questioned her about paying with Bitcoin again. Analize led us to the beer room for a tasting.

The story goes that Analize and her husband Mark had spent time living in the Netherlands. Once they returned to South Africa they were disappointed with the beer selection here so they decided to start making their own! The owners said that they started accepting Bitcoin as more of a joke, but then it turned into something real.

IPA
We tried the Saison, Blond, IPA, and Stout. My favorite was the IPA (no surprise since I love my hops) and my boyfriend liked the Saison the best. We each got a full glass of our favorites and headed over the kitchen area. The menu was very reasonably priced and pretty impressive for such a small plate. We decided to split a sausage sample platter and mussels.

Mussels, Asian style























After our food (and selecting a few beers to take with us for later) came the big moment...paying with Bitcoin. Just kidding, it was actually pretty anticlimactic, but I guess the ease of paying is one the things that makes Bitcoin attractive.

Even if you aren't into the whole Bitcoin thing, Honingklip is definitely worth stopping by if you're driving through the area and in need of a good drink or bite to eat.

And if you know of any good places to spend Bitcoin in South Africa, let me know!



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