Alcohol, for better and for worse, is back in the mix of South African society. Consumers have stocked up, retailers are happy, manufacturers are happy, the taxman is happier, and for the average 'two-a-night' drinker, life is just a little bit sweeter.
South African retailers, online wine merchants and delivery apps had a bumper day on Monday as South Africans loaded up on their favourite tipples from Monkey Shoulder and Jameson whiskey to wine and beer by the caseload.
While retailers were unwilling to go into specifics on volume or turnover it is estimated that in excess of R250-million was spent in towns from Polokwane to Worcester on Monday.
"Liquor sales were brisk and can best be compared to Black Friday demand, except significantly higher," said Brian Leroni, corporate affairs executive at Massmart, which includes Makro in its stable.
Online trade was exceptionally good, he added. Makro made use of WumDrop, a new "last mile" delivery kid on the block, and OneCart to ensure it kept up with deliveries.
Another delivery app that had a bumper day was Bottles, which, four years ago, was the first on-demand alcohol delivery platform in South Africa, but which saw its business evaporate under...