Sam Calagione Discusses Newest Collaboration

MILTON, DE – Dogfish Head and The Bruery joined forces last week to create a special collaboration brew for victims of the recent earthquake in Japan.

Sam Calagione flew to Orange County to brew the beer, which will feature ingredients like nori, chili peppers, sesame seeds and kumquats.

Brewbound was able to catch up with Calagione to discuss the brew and the idea of collaborations.

Brewbound: So, tell us about the collaboration. How did you guys link up and decide to brew this beer?

Sam Calagione: Patrick and I have enjoyed beers together on numerous occasions in the past. He reached out to me and asked if we would be interested in doing something together and I said ‘heck yeah.’ Then a million emails and numerous test batches and conference calls occured between the invite and the actual brew date took place. Patrick, Tyler, Kevin and the whole Bruery team were a joy to work with, make excellent tacos, and are pretty darn good at bocce.

BB: Awesome! So what kinds of flavors can we expect? How did you use all of the “off-centered” ingredients?

SC: Multiple pilot batches were done and tweaked. We fermented with the same sake yeast we use for Chateau Jiahu. On the actual brew date we made a quick, but unanimous, decision to up the Ginger in volume. We are hopeful each ingredient contribution will shine through in harmony and balance.

BB: I can see this heading towards the IPA style, am I close on that? What will the ABV end up being?

SC: Patrick should have the exact ABV in a week or so. It won’t be hoppy like an IPA, but it will be spicy and citrusy.

BB: Will this be available on in 750ml bottles?

SC: We will bottle mostly in 750’s and maybe a little draft.

BB: What do you think about collaborations in general? How do collaborations help from a business perspective? What is the motivation?

SC: The motivation is getting our peanut butter in the chocolate of breweries we believe in, having fun, being creative and brewing something that has never been brewed before – in an iterative, exploratory, non-monogamous but loving relationship. Together we are heavy!

The Bruery and Dogfish Head collaborated to make 30 barrels of beer on the initial brew day, but plan to make over 100 barrels in total. The goal is donate a portion of sales from each bottle to Japanese craft brewers affected by the earthquake.

The yet-to-be-named brew has not been placed in any official style category, but they are calling it a “specialty ale.”

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