The first all-girl brewery in Modderfontein, South Africa was founded in October 2013. It offers great tasting, home brewed, hand crafted beer.
The dream that finally comes to life was conceived by lifelong friends Delia Bailey and Thea Blom on a Sunny day in a lush green park, under a tree where the two are sharing a bottle of wine. After a couple of sips, one boldly declares: “Let there be, NOT wine, let there be beer! Craft beer!”
They make a toast, and one year and six months later- a stunning crisp white duplex, adorned with colours of red and a hint of brown stands firm. It’s a craft brewery called Oakes Brewhouse. An all-female brewery. And right next to it is an architectural masterpiece, a Portuguese restaurant called 33 High Street. Blom, a professional chef and owner of 33 High street explains that though the title takes a dig at the male gender, it was pure coincidence and not intentional as perceived… To some extent of course. The name of the brewery in fact stems from and is inspired by the majestic oak trees that populate the area.” It’s an element that is evident the moment one sets foot at the venue.
Adding to the mix is an eyebrow-raising individual, the actual brewer who goes by the name of Happy Sekanka. A black female in her early 30s, dabbling the majorly white, male-dominated industry like dice in a game of Russian roulette.
Bailey, a pharmacist, explains that they they decided to go the all-female route after seeing a huge gap in the already flooded market of craft beer. It’s a gamble that is slowly paying off, based on the booming daily sales and response from customers at the brewery.
While Sekanka is currently steering the ship, she’s made it a point to pass on her superb knowledge and brewing abilities to two trainees currently employed at the brewery.
The brewery currently makes and sells four types of beers. Both on tap and in 450ml bottles.