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Doing it Local, Drinking it local

From the beginning, springing from its birth place, the aim of beer makers has always been to be the highlight of the market through sales. But what makes Mohope a little bit interesting than the latter is their vision which is to establish a craft beer of original quality.

Mohope Brewing Company sourced as a brainchild of its founder and director, Lebona Moleli who not only has outstanding academic qualifications to support his company, but also has a variety of work experience that centers on manufacturing, operations, marketing, business development, leadership, mentorship, consulting as well as entrepreneurship. Mr. Lebona is a holder of BSc (NUL), MSc (Atlanta University and MBA (Wits Business School). All these have granted him the honor of becoming a biochemist turned marketer and serial entrepreneur by intertwining all of his skills and internalizing them into a craft brewing company that stands tall for his work and name’s sake.

He founded Mohope Brewing Company in January 2019 after running an extensive research into the craft beer market.

My grandmother used to make traditional beer for our traditional ceremonies, ‘mekete’ way back in Lesotho.” He adds.

The inner child that existed in him in that point of his life took interest in the way her grandmother crafted out of a place of passion and precision. Years later having worked at a commercial brewery and being a brewer by profession, he realized that there was not much of a difference between traditional and commercial beer.

So why Mohope?

“Mohope is a South Sotho word for Calabash.”

According to Lebona , a calabash is a container made from dried shell of a fruit belonging to the gourd family. It is known for its common use in a typical household as a utensil for serving drinks including water and beer. Mohope is a Premium craft beer that is a proud South African product inspired by the Basotho culture and heritage, hence Mohope. He adds.

Lebona’s respect for the Basotho culture mused what has grown into not only a craft brewing company, but one that strives to serve only premium craft beer or nothing. This respect comes from a place of truth. Being raised by a paternal grandmother in Maseru, Lesotho he has always been captivated by the culture, heritage and tradition that spiked around him. This love was channeled into a business he started in 2015, MADEINLESOTHO that sold Basotho art and crafts to promote the heritage of Lesotho. It was quite clear that he could do more, hence Mohope.

“Mohope is an expression and celebration of our African heritage.”

This is evident through even the natural ingredients that define Mohope being; malted barley, water, hops and yeast. Not very far from the Basotho traditional beer.

“This beer is brewed under stringent quality parameters to produce a crisp refreshing taste that quenches the toughest African thirst.”

This poses as an invitation to all beer lovers.

The dream spewed back in December 2018 when he first experimented his recipe with a homebrew kit. After several trials and experimentation, Mohope recipe was finally finessed and perfected in July 2019, ready to hit the market and throats of anyone who craved a beer that had a pint of home inside it.

The success of Mohope was reinforced through Lebona gaining some skills from working almost 8 years at a major South African brewing company as a biochemist. His theoretical microbiology and biochemistry skills were put to a practical test. Born with entrepreneurial skills, he had assured himself that one day all his technical experience and that of entrepreneurship would create a brand of his own.

Some of Mohope’s highlights since its birth include

  • It’s official launch in Johannesburg on the 1st of December 2019
  • It’s introduction to the Lesotho beer market at the Lesotho Tourism Festival (LETOFE) in late December 2019.
  • The feedback about Mohope’s quality and tasting has been positive, thus serving as a remarkable highlight in such a short period after it’s launch.

“Consumers like the green bottle and find the taste easy drinking and refreshing.”

Mohope is a premium beer targeted at a very niche market and is currently available in selected outlets in Johannesburg. Mr.Lebona adds that there are also proper plans to do a proper launch in Lesotho targeting hotels, restaurants, events and tourist attraction venues. Mohope quality crafted refreshment a bottle away.

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