By Mike Pomranz
September 16, 2014
The Coolest Team

We are living in a golden age of crowdfunding. Recently, we have seen the completion of both the largest ever Kickstarter campaign and the largest ever IndieGogo campaign.

Possibly even more surprisingly, both had food and beverage angles.

By raising $13,285,226 from 62,642 backers, Coolest Cooler, a cooler that amongst other things, has a working blender built into it, blew the roof off the previous Kickstarter funding record, beating out a customizable watch by over $3 million. That’s a lot of people who are sick of lame coolers, non-blender having coolers.

7 Questions with the Inventor of the Coolest Cooler

And over at IndieGogo, Stone Brewery raised $2,532,211 for a “Groundbreaking Stone Collaboration,” just besting the previous top funder. Billed as a “pre-sale” event for unreleased beer, Stone suggested funders think of what they are paying for as “beer futures” for “beers that, well, don’t even exist.  Yet.”

But that got us wondering: What other crowdfunding ideas have piqued the interest of the culinary world?

We looked through the “most funded” lists of both Kickstarter and IndieGogo to bring you this list of the 12 biggest food and beverage-related crowdfunding campaigns to date (every one that has raised over half a million dollars.)

And what did we learn? Well, two things really. First, people love beer. Four of the items on the list below have to do with the beverage (five if you count the cooler). And second, the “sous vide” market has been surprisingly underestimated. Four of the items below are intended to help home cooks with the French cooking technique.

Here are the top 12, the amount they raised, and the sales pitch that sold them.

1. Coolest Cooler ($13,285,226)

“The COOLEST is a portable party disguised as a cooler, bringing blended drinks, music and fun to any outdoor occasion.”

2. Stone Groundbreaking Collaborations ($2,531,898)

“Incredible rare beers from one of the world’s highest-rated breweries.”

3. Anova Precision Cooker ($1,811,321)

“The Anova Precision Cooker is used to cook ‘sous vide,’ which allows anyone to produce restaurant quality results.”

4. BioLite BaseCamp Stove ($1,032,443)

“We heard you, it's here: advanced off-grid cooking and charging for groups, powered by wood. Can your stove do that?”

5. Sansaire Sous Vide Circulator ($823,003)

“Sansaire: the world’s best-looking sous vide circulator.”

6. New Nomiku Sous Vide ($750,192)

“The new Nomiku – The world's 1st WiFi-connected sous vide immersion circulator brings top chefs & community into your home kitchen.”

7. PortHole ($736,112)

“A simple and beautiful infusion vessel that can be used for cocktails, oils, teas, or any infusion imaginable.”

8. World’s first roast-grind-brew coffee machine ($681,461)

“Raw green coffee beans to fresh black coffee - at a single push of a button. Let's change coffee. Together.”

9. PicoBrew Zymatic: Automatic Beer Brewing Appliance ($661,026)

“Brew award-winning craft beer at the touch of a button!”

10. SYNEK ($648,535)

“SYNEK is a draft system that serves any beer, fresh from the tap, anywhere you want it.”

11. Smart Herb Garden ($625,851)

“High technology meets your house plants. This smart garden lets everyone grow fresh herbs at home.”

12. Chug ($591,804)

“Zane Lamprey continues where he left off with Three Sheets, traveling the globe to learn about drinking cultures and customs.”

Related: 7 Questions with the Inventor of the Shower Wine Glass Holder 
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