Earlier this year, Ukrainian brewery Pravda shared five of its brewing recipes and called on brewers around the world to make them and donate the profits to war relief. Three South Australian breweries – Prancing Pony Brewery, Barossa Valley Brewing, and Route 9 Distillery – answered the call, joining forces to brew a Red Eye Ale they aptly renamed ‘Puck Futin’.
The Puck Futin project has gone on to collectively raise $33,048 that has been channelled into medical and humanitarian aid provided by charities including MSF, UNHCR and the Ukrainian charity ‘Free and Indifferent’, which works closely with Pravda brewery to provide support for displaced people in Ukraine. Funds were also provided to the Ukrainian Society in South Australia, to support newly arriving refugees in South Australia.
“On behalf of all of us, we would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to everyone who supported the initiative and made this incredible outcome possible,” Prancing Pony said.
Pravda Brewery announced its “Victory Beer Series” on its website in March, releasing the recipes and graphics for five of their beers — Putin Huylo, a dry hopped strong ale (with a name that 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 brewery wrote. “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. 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.
“As peaceful craft brewers, we want to return to the normal life asap and enjoy brewing and drinking. 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.”
“My wife, Natalie, and her family are from Ukraine, and we are very connected to the Ukrainian community in Adelaide,” said Rob Watt, Managing Director of Route 9 Distillery.
“We couldn’t live with feeling helpless, as we watch the devastation being wreaked on this country. I approached Prancing Pony Brewery with this idea of brewing for Ukraine and, coincidentally, they were talking already about this to the brewing community.
“Within a day, we had Barossa Valley Brewing throwing themselves at the opportunity to brew with us, Black Squid Design reworking the labels, and CCL Label helping us to print. Barossa Enterprises also assisted with labour for packaging.
CEO of Prancing Pony Brewery, Corinna Steeb, together with her husband Frank, migrated from Europe. The invasion reminds Corinna of the Cold War days.
“This time, instead of communism, the ideological battle lines are between the democracies of the world and autocracies and dictatorship,” said Steeb.
“Pravda is a proud brewery with a mission to create beers with Ukrainian spirit. We have marvelled at this spirit as their fight for freedom. This feisty red ale is brewed in SA, in collaboration with Pravda. It is a Pravda beer with their recipe and their label. It’s a beer for Ukraine with profits going to aid their brave resistance. So, raise a glass and toast to freedom.”
Beer Cartel was appointed as the exclusive distributor for NSW, ACT, Victoria and Queensland, while the beers were available on tap at Barossa Valley Brewery, Prancing Pony Brewery in Totness, Pony on Rundle and other participating hotels and bars.