the legend of oupa joe

The legend of Oupa Joe

The story of our African Spirit Distillery begins a long time ago, in the deep darkness that preceded a warm summer dawn.

That day, Oupa Joe and his beloved friend Jan hid in the undisclosed corner of a small but idyllic holding on the quiet banks of the Bullfrog Pan. Here, the two wacky alchemists spent many days creating and tasting their magical apricot moonshine.

Until one evening, when the sun went down, you would have seen them trotting home, loud and giddy, with their newly reduced mampoer: the magic had finally been done.

The African Spirit Distillery

Family heritage

Started in 2016, the African Spirit Distillery was born in Boksburg from the legend of Oupa Joe, the maternal grandfather who first approached the art of distillation in a playful and experimental way.

Today, three young men have inherited this passion. Under the guidance of Fritz Steyn, Snr., they have embarked on a unique path made of experimentation and technical acquisition recognizable in the quality and originality of their products.

the brothers’ experience

“Some years ago, my youngster son Jan-Harm, inspired and fascinated by the ‘Legend of Oupa Joe’, started distilling on a small scale using a rudimentary equipment. Despite the lack of knowledge and means, his curiosity and his innate talent for distillation prevailed, and the results of those first experiments proved to be interesting and promising right from the start.

From that moment, together with my other son Fritz Jr. and my son-in-law Frans, we began to invest in distillation courses and various other training programmes, finally obtaining extraordinary results.

Today, my guys run the distillery: Fritz Jr. and Frans are more involved in technical matters and production, while Jan-Harm is more interested in experimenting with new flavours.

The Steyn family strives every day to offer anyone who wishes it unique and high quality products which embody the essence of our beloved land, South Africa”

̶  Fritz Steyn, Snr.

The distillery

Completed in 2018 and entirely designed by Fritz Steyn, Snr., The African Spirit Distillery combines elegance and a style that recalls Africa, while maintaining a modern and welcoming look. The original centennial building was the house of a farm belonging to Fritz’s father, and today it is part of a complex where the other two family businesses are located.

Thanks to the extension work it was possible to provide the distillery with a professional kitchen equipped with the best catering equipment. This, together with a well-stocked cocktail bar and a cosy outdoor patio with garden, allows them to host events by reservation.

During the renovations, the Steyn family wanted to keep elements that were already present in the original building, as they believe that all the best things are the result of a skilful combination of tradition and innovation. In this regard, for example, the wood used for the base of the cocktail bar counter was obtained from the old floor, while the typically South African pressed ceiling is still clearly visible at the entrance.


Our Boksburg-based family business aims to become a symbol of South Africa’s craft distilling and blending enterprise. Our special mix of molasses has been specially designed to give all our products a distinctive and unmistakable taste.


Attention to detail allows us to customize different types of event. The African Spirit Distillery is the ideal location for birthday and graduation parties, but also for a special family reunion or a business meeting.

We host guided tours to the distillery with final tastings of our products, but also lunches and dinners. Our cocktail bar and our guys will also be at your disposal to delight you with extraordinary drinks.

Our staff is at your disposal to give you an unforgettable day and to accompany you in choosing the menu, the settings and all those details that will embellish your event.

Please contact us for more information and to arrange the details of your event in accordance with your wishes, needs and budget.

Maximum occupancy: 50 people.

Contact Us

Get in touch today if you would like to find out more, schedule a visit, or meet the team.