Skip to content

A New Cocktail Festival Puts the Spotlight on Africa                                 

With the revival of interest in mixology, cocktail festivals have proliferated around the globe, but Africa has been notably absent…until now. With the founding of Ajabu in Johannesburg, Colin Asare-Appiah and Mark Talbot Holmes, have created a biannual international spirits and cocktail festival, which will highlight Africa’s contribution to the field. Mr. Asare-Appiah got the idea for the festival while sheltering in place in Brooklyn during the pandemic, a period that allowed him time to reflect on his African roots. “South Africa is definitely the leader in the African drinks industry,” said Leah van Deventer, a drinks writer, educator and consultant in Cape Town. “But there are emerging hot spots in Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria, and, to a lesser extent in Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire and the Democratic Republic of Congo.”