For those who don’t know, Drifter’s namesake is a 43' sailing yacht built by Captain Nick's parents in their garden in Hout Bay in the late '70s.
At the time, Nick’s father was working as a diamond diver off the Skeleton Coast of Namibia. He would head up the coast and work for a few months, save some money and then return home to Cape Town to work on the yacht. After four years of hard work, he finished the boat and to his parents’ grateful surprise, she floated!
Nick’s folks’ great adventure began as they first sailed West to the Caribbean where they explored the islands for a few years. They then traveled through the Panama Canal and onto the Galapagos Islands, Indonesia, New Zealand, Australia and back again with many eventful escapades along the way.
After nearly a decade of sailing around the world on Drifter, Nick’s parents returned home to Cape Town to settle down, have children and eventually sell the boat.
These travels inspired the story of exploration and adventure that is Drifter today.
In late 2016, after a serendipitous conversation between Nick’s mother and a friend at a braai, it was discovered that the Drifter boat was still afloat (albeit in very rough condition), off the coast of Mauritius.
Not long after this serendipitous discovery, Nick made contact with the owner. With the help of a few scallywag friends, he put in an offer and brought Drifter back into the family once again!
After a few years of owning the boat with a handful of venturous sails in between, navigating a pandemic with multiple alcohol bans, relocating a brewery and other unexpected stormy seas, the Drifter crew has found the time to give some much-needed TLC to the old rust-bucket and get her back in shape to sail again.
Much like the boat, the brewery comes from humble beginnings centered around community and a desire to inspire adventure and creativity.
“Sailing on the boat again is such an incredible feeling - it’s like reliving a piece of history. It’s come full circle - imagining my mother and father exploring the world on a yacht they built themselves in their back garden to now sailing on that very same boat with friends...and now with our freshly installed kegs of Drifter beer and G+T on board!” - Nick
While we’ve faced some serious storms over the last year and a half, we're hopeful for what's ahead. Renovating the boat is a positive sign of the changing tides and we're setting our sails towards a bright horizon.
Drifter is berthed at the Royal Cape Yacht Club, where Nick’s parents were members for many years. You can find us participating in the Spring Twilight Series each Wednesday, racing on the seas and enjoying our very own Drifter brews now on tap at the Galley Bar!
Keep an eye out this summer for the Drifter yacht sailing outside your favourite Cape Town beaches - who knows, maybe you'll find some treasure (definitely a keg or two) on board! ;)
Yours in beer and adventure,