Don and I spoke with Dogfish Head’s big fish Sam Calagione today, and we asked about the TV show Brew Masters and what comes next for Dogfish Head and mass media. Sam’s answer was pretty exciting.
Sam told us that he’s still working with Zero Point Zero, the production company that filmed Brew Masters, but instead of perusing a television opportunity, they are taking their content directly to the people.
Zero Point Zero has a partnership with the hip literary journal McSweeney’s, and the two are busily mashing up food, print, and the latest technology to create some compelling new media. They most recently teamed up with iconoclastic chef David Chang to produce lucky peach, a quarterly print journal and soon-to-be iPad app that explores food through travelogue, essays, recipes, photography, and, in the case of the iPad app, video and who knows what else. Imagine all of that, but with beer!
Calagione hinted that he was already working on such a project with the Zero-Point-Zero/McSweeney’s team. The format should provide loads of creative freedom while insulating them from the commercial constraints of television.
If you recall, Anthony Bourdain (also a Zero Point Zero guy – they produce No Reservations) tweeted that “big beer” threatened to pull their advertising dollars away from Discovery Networks if Brew Masters was renewed, so the show was abandoned. A quarterly journal and iPad app would give Sam and company the freedom to express themselves without having to worry about advertisers. It should also provide many interesting ways to creatively explore the joys of good beer.
Sam didn’t give us a time frame on when the app and journal will be released, so we can assume that it isn’t imminent. When it is released, we look forward to seeing what Sam and his buddies (I imagine Bourdain will be among them) can come up with.
If you’re one of those beer geeks who wanted more Brew Masters, here’s your opportunity for another round. If you’re one of those geeks who felt Brew Masters didn’t dig deep enough, there’s a good chance that this project will satisfy you. Either way, sign us up.
Our interview with Sam covered a range of topics which we’ll be writing as a series of posts in the coming days, but this tidbit got us so excited we just had to share it now. Look for more soon.