|Country of origin||South Africa|
|Introduced||1895 (under the SAB banner)|
|Alcohol by volume||5%|
|Related products||Castle Lite, Castle Milk Stout|
Castle Lager is a South African pale lager produced by SABMiller. It is the flagship product of the Castle Brewery and has been variously described as South Africa's national beer, akin to Carling in the United Kingdom and Budweiser in the United States. Castle Lager was awarded in the "World's Best Bottled Lager" category at the 2000 Brewing Industry International Awards and is the official sponsor to many sporting associations within South Africa, most notably the South African Football Team and South African Cricket Team.
Castle Lager’s origins can be traced to the Johannesburg gold rush of 1886. Charles Glass, founder of the Castle Brewery, began selling beer to the miners after noticing a gap in the market. The new beer soon became popular amongst the prospectors of the gold rush, and in 1889 one of Johannesburg's early newspapers, the Digger's News, declared it "a phenomenal success." In 1895, on the success of Castle Lager, the South African Breweries (SAB) was founded, with its head office being the Castle Brewery. Two years later, SAB became the first industrial company to list on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Today, Castle Lager is brewed in nine countries and is available in over 40 countries worldwide. In 2000 Castle Lager was awarded in the "World's Best Bottled Lager" category at the Brewing Industry International Awards.
Castle Lager sponsorships include:
- Premier Sponsor of the South African Football Team (Bafana Bafana).
- Team Sponsor of the South African Cricket Team (Castle Lager Proteas).
- Associate Sponsor of the South African Rugby Team (Springboks).
- Official beer supplier to the HSBC Sevens World Series Leg: Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa.
- Official beer supplier to the Vodacom Super Rugby Tournament.
- Official beer supplier to the Premier Soccer League (PSL).
- Castle Lite - introduced in 1994, Castle Lite is a reduced alcohol and lower calorie variant of Castle Lager. It is sold in a green bottle (as opposed to Castle Lager's brown) and is also available in cans and draught. Castle Lite is lagered at -2.5 °C and is packaged with South Africa’s first thermocromatic temperature indicator. It has an alcohol by volume of 4%.
- Castle Milk Stout - a milk stout that is advertised as "South Africa's Premier Stout". Castle Milk Stout is the only beer that uses a dark roasted malt to extract a rich brew. The addition of caramel balances out the bitterness in an attempt to offer a more balanced taste. It has an ABV of 6%