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From Saba's Peaks to Pints: The Cloud Top Beer Journey

SABA - When one thinks of the beautiful island of Saba, its pristine nature, the crystal-clear waters, and the warmth of its people are often the first thoughts that come to mind. This year, as we mark the 20th anniversary of the Sea & Learn Foundation, another unique addition makes its mark on the island's cultural tapestry - the Saba Cloud Top beer.

The Sea & Learn Foundation, under the evocative tagline "Enhance Your Environmental Awareness," has consistently brought a wealth of knowledge and passion to Saba's shores. Scientists from around the globe grace our island to engage in hands-on activities with individuals spanning all age groups from the small to the elderly, and locals and tourists alike. This initiative has thrived, thanks to the tremendous support from the Public Entity Saba, Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds Caribisch Gebied, and an array of over 50 sponsors.

An Idea is Born

In 2021, Scientist Erica Moulton, an expert invitee for the Sea & Learn Foundation, found herself enchanted by Saba's charm. Her admiration for the island and its initiatives, like the Saba Spice—a creation of Saban women—inspired her to contribute.

This led to her collaboration with Bastet Brewing, a venture co-founded by Tom Ross, a lifelong friend and Huston Lett. Known for their love for the environment and their affinity for drawing inspiration from fermentation traditions across the globe, the duo was a perfect fit. Geo Aqua Watch (a water quality monitoring non-profit) and Bay Tech Label also came on to help bring the project to life.

With her foundation, C4OE Center for Open Exploration, Erica decided to brew a special craft beer as a tribute to the Sea & Learn Foundation, enhancing its sustainability and promoting the beauty of Saba. The designing process was as engaging as the brew itself. The Sea & Learn Foundation was involved in naming this novel creation, and Malachy Multimedia brought the design to life, gaining vision from a mural crafted by the former Saba resident Joan C. Bourque. Thus, "Saba Cloud Top" was born, embodying the island's iconic distant view, nestled beneath a cloud, invoking the question, "What’s that island over there under the cloud?"

Our very own, Vernon Hassell, sponsored the beer's transportation journey from Florida to Saba, with logistics further managed by Erica, her husband Sean, and Hassell-Free Exports concluding the beer’s voyage to Saba.

Dream of Saba

The Saba Tourism Bureau introduced this exquisite beer on Monday, September 25, during a grand tasting event. As craft beer gains traction around the world, particularly evident from its success on St. Maarten, experts like Michele Korteweg, owner of Shortcut2Success and John Leone, owner of Pelikaan Brewery/Sea View Hotel reiterated the potential of Saba Cloud Top as a powerful tool to market Saba's unique offerings.

Want to try it out? Throughout October, every presentation night will showcase Saba Cloud Top samplings, and numerous restaurants on Saba are now serving. Soon, the island of St. Maarten will also have the chance to experience this brew at an upcoming beer festival.

It's not just a beer. It's a tale of passion, collaboration, and the spirit of Saba. Cheers!

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