THE City Slukker nearly choked. He had just walked into Dros at Umhlanga Ridge in KZN a couple of weeks ago and ordered a 500ml local draught on a lazy Sunday evening.
Not being overly optimistic as to the value for money beer prospects when out of his own well-charted Bay territory, CS proffered a 50 buck note rather than a 20.
But when the barman presented change of R22, that kind of took the crispness off his first sluk of the day (which was at least ice cold and served up pronto).
And if the slukker thought R28 for a beer was tough, he had to cough up (and stifle another choke) an additional buck for the same-size sluk at the departures cocktail bar at King Shaka International the next night.
It's ridiculous – considering how KZN gets so hot and humid and all.
CS doesn't think he'd make it through summer there without going into serious overdraft.
All of which serves to remind those beer-quaffing folk who reside in the vicinity of Walmer in the Bay how fortunate they are at the moment.
There are no fewer than five sluk-dens which are offering some real value in different formats – terrific prices all day round, or a happy couple of hours, or daytime specials on draught that cut off at 7pm. Under R17 (which is what many pozzies are charging, if not much more) is the qualifier here.
Leading the field is the Victoria Park Club where you can sink a 500ml Castle between 10am and 7pm for just one green tenner. Now that's a price which should be on an endangered list, it's so rare. All bottled house wines are also R10 during the same times when, on the munchies side, you can grab a beef, chicken or calamari burger – all served with chips – for a budget-beating R25.
Then there is Zest in Heugh Road where the slukker enjoyed the same draught for R12.50 this week. That applies between 11am and 7pm when a same-size Hansa is R13.50.
Near the airport, The Hangar has two happy hours, weekdays between 5pm and 7pm when you will pay R14 for either a Hansa or Castle draught.
And then there's the nearby Zebra which all through the day and night has both Black Label and Castle 500ml for R15. While slightly higher at R16 for the same-size Castle and Hansa – again during all opening hours – is the South Ender.
So. Hints of a price war perhaps?
No matter. Considering many pubs in the Bay recently increased prices, it just shows you can find deals if you shop around – and keep a beady eye on the time.