Give Us Your Questions for Dogfish Head’s Sam Calagione

We often say that our readers are the lifeblood of this site.  You give us your time, your feedback and your expertise, which frequently outstrips our own.  So when we lined up a (typed) interview with Sam Calagione, we figured we owe you guys and gals the chance to chime in with your questions for him.  So that’s just what we’re doing. 

I have a thing for these freaky gifs!

Sam has agreed to answer a few questions for us via email.  Don and I wanted to Skype with him so we could have more of a rap session, but he declined.  I don’t blame him – we don’t really know each other and he has no reason to trust us.  For all he knows we’d ambush him with a bunch of uncomfortable questions about the whole Brew Masters thing (which we wouldn’t do, Scout’s Honor!).  Anyway, either that’s the reason, or he’s totally swamped running the brewery, or he can’t stand the sound of Don’s voice, which I totally understand.  🙂

At any rate, we’re excited to share this opportunity with you folks.  Let us know in the comments below what questions you have for Sam and we’ll pick a couple and pass them along.

While there are no rules or real guidelines here, I’m hoping to use this opportunity to get to know they guy himself more than the logistics of distributing beer to different states or the intricacies of brewing ancient beers. Or why there’s no Dogfish Head in Idaho (ahem).

But that’s me.  What do you want to know?




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Craft beer nerd, frequent beer blogger and occasional home brewer.

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26 Comments on “Give Us Your Questions for Dogfish Head’s Sam Calagione”

  1. July 19, 2011 at 1:49 pm #

    One question I had in mind is this: Is it a pain in the ass being a folk hero? Now you have to drive that old red truck FOREVER!

  2. johnking82
    July 19, 2011 at 1:55 pm #

    I’d ask him, for every collaboration you do with a brewery (there seems to be a ton lately), how many have you had to turn down as of late? Also, besides the beers, whats your favorite aspect of these collaborations?

  3. Rob Crozier
    July 19, 2011 at 1:59 pm #

    My question: You read about musicians and authors and how they are inspired in odd places and at odd times, what is the craziest place/time you were inspired to brew a particular beer? (I figured there must be a funny story somewhere with all of the odd ingredients he often brews with).

  4. July 19, 2011 at 1:59 pm #

    Well…. so much for my number 1,2&3 questions, all of which would have been about the untimely demise of Brew Masters under suspicious circumstances.

    That said, I’d still be interested in learning his take on how he felt about the project overall…

    Did it meet his own expectations? If he had complete control of a similar/subsequent series, what, if anything, would he change?

    Does he see any unanticipated negative consequences from a higher “Craft Beer IQ” for the mass market population?

    Would he consider joining a craft brewers consortium similar to the CBA? What drawbacks does he see from that type of arrangement (with or without an A-B/InBev).

    Will he promise not to distribute any of that outrageous Chica spit beer? Ever?

    Does he see a time when the mutual support that appears very common among craft brewers will take a turn based upon the realities of a crowded market?

    and the softball…. When he’s not enjoying a Hellhound or Bitches Brew, what would we most likely find in his pint or tulip glass?

    Great catch, BTW. Looking forward to it.


  5. July 19, 2011 at 2:05 pm #

    Hi there.

    Great Q/A opportunity! As a Conflict Management specialist and Beer Nerd, I’m interested in the dynamics of micro-breweries’ operations (from interpersonal relations among staff to PR to distribution and beyond). A general view of breweries is that they are heavenly to work at, and this may be true. Not necessarily addressing DFH, where might “hot spots” for dispute be present within expanding micro-breweries? How are they usually handled?


  6. BeerBanker
    July 19, 2011 at 2:09 pm #

    Why not bottle in 12 oz. size some of the various stouts that are on tap at the brewpubs for those of us in DFH distribution area but not near a brewpub ? Rarely do I see a DFH stout, even in 750ml format.

  7. Tom
    July 19, 2011 at 2:33 pm #

    It seems like demand for DFH is High and Supply is Low, How about selling some bonds to create a bigger brewery or multiple breweries? You would create more jobs, and get DFH to all 50 states.

    DFH to lead USA out of recession!

  8. July 19, 2011 at 2:41 pm #

    My fiancee finds you extremely handsome and charming. Could you please reveal a hidden deformity or personality flaw that will make her think less of you? Thanks!

  9. Don
    July 19, 2011 at 3:18 pm #

    Tell us something embarrassing that happened to you when you were putting together the Eataly deal. Is Mario Bitalli a big jerk? Why don’t you distribute in Idaho?

  10. July 19, 2011 at 4:12 pm #

    Hi Sam; I’m singing my same old tune. While I loved your show and laud your successes at bringing craft beer into the public eye, I find that I don’t like your high-ABV beers–too sweet for my palate. Any chance you’ll be making some of those archeologically-inspired beers as session beers?

  11. July 19, 2011 at 4:58 pm #

    Ask him when he plans to come to Missouri.

    • Don
      July 19, 2011 at 5:48 pm #

      What, to like move there?

  12. July 19, 2011 at 7:21 pm #

    Has he read Beer on my shirt?

  13. FatCatKC
    July 19, 2011 at 9:24 pm #

    I can’t think of a damn thing to ask other than the generic “what would you suggest a beginning brewer do to become pro?…Oh yeah go in to 2 million dollars worth of debt…OK got it.” Congratulations on the interview though guys that’s awesome!

  14. July 20, 2011 at 10:55 am #

    When I travel, I always try to find a local microbrewery to visit…I love supporting local breweries and trying beers I can’t get anywhere else. Assuming Sam still has time to travel, I’m curious if he takes the time to visit local, unknown microbreweries. If so, has he ever come across something that totally blew him away?

  15. July 20, 2011 at 9:07 pm #

    Any chance we’ll see another brewing of Bitches Brew? Would be great to see that in regular rotation.

    In my mind, that’s tied with the 90 Minute IPA as the two best DFH beers.

  16. July 21, 2011 at 4:03 am #

    I’d like to ask Sam what his favorite DFH beer/food pairing is.

  17. July 21, 2011 at 4:08 am #

    Also, I want to ask Sam what his all time favorite DFH beer is/was (from conception to finish).

    For example: Was it the 2009 120 minute IPA? Was it the cedar-chips ale from the surfboard company? Is it Midas Touch?

    What was your favorite DFH beer to concieve, brew and then to finally taste?

  18. July 21, 2011 at 4:19 am #

    I suppose while I’m at it (and because Sam Calagione is the man) I’ll make it a trifecta of questions for Sam the Man Calagione-

    What and where are your favorite INTERNATIONAL beers brewed? Maybe you can mould this question a bit better than I can- I want to know where he thinks the best place (country/city/pub) to get a beer outside of the United States.

    I suppose that a similar question could be asked about beer within the untied states- but obviously he’s biased on that one…

    This interview is gonna be awesome!

  19. July 21, 2011 at 2:55 pm #

    I saw a video of him rapping up in Seattle (Pike’s place brewery?)… when is his next show?

    • July 21, 2011 at 4:10 pm #

      Hmmm…He does actual show Jorge, or did someone goad him into a little freestyling?

  20. Ray
    June 22, 2012 at 7:55 pm #

    How can I get some of ur beer in Idaho


  1. Dogfish Head Founder Sam Calagione on the Difference Between Beer Geeks and Beer Snobs « Urban Beer Nerd - October 6, 2012

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