Breweries partner on Hey Diddle Diddle beer


Hey Diddle Diddle is a wheat ale. Courtesy Atwater Brewery

Beer drinkers who didn’t make the trip out to Colorado to try Jagged Mountain’s Hey Diddle Diddle — brewed to honor West Michigan native and former Michigan State punter Mike Sadler — are in luck.

Via a partnership with Detroit’s Atwater Brewery, the wheat ale brewed with apricots and blood oranges and finished with a touch of yeast and rose petals, is coming to Michigan.

Denver-based Jagged Mountain Craft Brewery released the beer earlier this summer to honor the memory of Sadler, who was killed in a car accident last year.

The beer will initially be available on tap and in 12-ounce bottles.

Its distribution will begin Saturday in East Lansing at a pair of local bars followed by other locations and retailers. It will make its way out to Detroit and Grand Rapids, where Atwater has a downtown location, later in September. Atwater’s distribution agreement with the M1 Network will ensure that Hey Diddle Diddle reaches statewide retailers this fall.

“The Hey Diddle Diddle beer was the perfect opportunity to produce a balanced, effervescent wheat ale, while honoring Mike’s legacy,” said Mark Rieth, owner, Atwater Brewery. “He was more than just a great Spartan both on and off the field. He was a great person who was loved by everyone who knew him. This beer and his foundation can help to honor his legacy.”

A portion of the sales of Hey Diddle Diddle will support the Michael Sadler Foundation, created by Sadler’s mother, Karen Sadler, out of Grand Rapids.

The foundation develops “programs and awards that emphasize the values that Mike embraced: academic excellence, athletic achievement, leadership and character strength.”

The name Hey Diddle Diddle comes from a trick play run by the Spartans against Iowa in 2013, the year Michigan State won its first Rose Bowl in 25 years. The play, in which the popular Spartan specialist faked a punt and scampered 25 yards for a first down, was christened “Hey Diddle Diddle, send Sadler up the middle” by Head Coach Mark Dantonio following the game.

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