Breweries Across the U.S. Are Collaborating on a Beer to Benefit Ukraine

Ukraine's Pravda Brewery released the recipes for five of their beers, encouraging other breweries to use them to raise money for their cause.

Draft beer in a glass; a Ukrainian flag
Photo: Juan Monino / Getty Images; Getty Images

While macro-breweries constantly battle over market share, craft breweries have shown a remarkable willingness to work together. And what began as a culture of collaboration brews has sometimes evolved into national and global initiatives where groups of breweries make the same beer to raise money or awareness. Prominent examples include Sierra Nevada Resilience IPA for Camp Fire relief, Other Half's All Together to support the hospitality industry during the pandemic, and Weathered Souls' Black Is Beautiful for Black Lives Matter awareness.

So when Russia invaded Ukraine, the Lviv-based Pravda Brewery knew who they could turn to: other craft brewers across the globe. And if you're looking for an easy way to show your support for the embattled European nation, these "Brew for Ukraine" beers are starting to be released at breweries across the U.S.

Pravda Brewery announced their "Victory Beer Series" on their website on March 5, releasing the recipes and graphics for five of their beers — Putin Huylo, a dry hopped strong ale (with a name the pokes fun at the Russian president); Syla, a Belgian tripel; Red Eyes, an American red ale; Frau Ribbentrop, a Belgian witbier; and From San to Don, a Ukrainian imperial stout — and encouraging breweries around the world to make them on their behalf.

"Brewing in Lviv now sounds like a non-priority. The city is bracing for a fight. Alcohol is forbidden, and we once in a lifetime support it. But brewing now — like giving birth or a marriage — is hope. Beer takes several weeks to be ready. We hope we win by then," the brewery wrote. "We invite prominent craft breweries to join us for on-line brewing sessions. We will stream the process. Join in with support and donations as we brew in Lviv, the city that prepares for the battle."

It's not clear how many American breweries have taken up Pravda's call, but news of forthcoming brews are already popping up across the country: from the legendary Russian River Brewery in California making their take on Putin Huylo to smaller producers like Pennsylvania's Stickman Brews which is making a version of Frau Ribbentrop.

Jason Goldstein, owner and brewmaster at New Jersey's Icarus Brewing, told his brewery had to change their entire brewing schedule to make room for their version of Putin Huylo. "Every single person jumped right on it anyway," he said. "I hope this really just brings awareness to people and encourages them to help out. Whether it is by buying the beer or donating online, whatever it is. Hopefully it opens those eyes and opens those checkbooks."

As Pravda explained, beers can't be brewed overnight (even the fastest ferments usually take a week or two to be ready) so you won't necessarily find these beers on tap or in beer fridges quite yet. But expect to see them start rolling out at different breweries over the next couple weeks.

In the meantime, Pravda is hoping for the best. "As peaceful craft brewers, we want to return to the normal life asap and enjoy brewing and drinking," the brewery wrote in their announcement. "It's a decisive moment for Ukraine, Europe and democracies of the world. Soon [we] will win this war and have a good beer. The Beer of Victory."

As for where the money is going, the brewery has included links to "our individual accounts for quick access and we guarantee good use."

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