KALAMAZOO, Mich. — Arcadia Brewing created a unique small-batch sorghum beer initially inspired by small-scale farmers in Africa. Sorghum, a hardy and drought resistant grain, is a staple in many developing countries and often makes its way into many foods and drinks including a sour beer.
Tillers International, a Michigan-based international development organization specializing in collaborating with famers from developing countries to improve crop yields, approached Arcadia Brewing with sorghum grains and sorghum molasses in hopes of creating a beer that would draw attention to the non-profit and the farmers they work with overseas.
The sorghum grain and molasses was produced by Tillers International strictly using animal power and human power including draft horses and oxen and traditional farming methods. Farmers in developing countries may not have the resources for tractors and often rely on draft animals as a source of power. The same skillsets Tillers International teaching abroad are also taught at their 400+ acre farm in Scotts, Michigan.
Once presented with the grains and molasses, Arcadia’s brewing adventures began. By sifting through the scant information on brewing with sorghum available online, vague recipes in different languages, and through trial and error, Arcadia finally created a sweet, hardy and robust sorgum beer. For many beer writers, this is the real story.
The Ugandan Hammer isn’t gluten-free as one would expect from a typical sorghum beer in North America, nor is it sour as one might find throughout Central Africa. The small-batch beer simply draws inspiration from the individual brewers of sorghum beer in developing countries.
The Ugandan Hammer was tapped on Tuesday, April 30, and will be on sale until the current batch is gone.
If you would like to learn more about the Ugandan Hammer and what the brewers went through to create it, we can provide contacts at Arcadia Brewing in Kalamazo, Michigan.