Watch Mario Batali and Dogfish Brewery’s Sam Calagione Turn Food Waste Into Beer
Dogfish Head Brewery’s Sam Calagione, with the help of the website First We Feast, has just launched a new web series called “That’s Odd, Let’s Drink It”—a show that “explores that outer boundaries of experimental brewing” by teaming up Calagione with an icon in another field and tasking them to create a never-before-seen beer in each episode.
First up, Calagione teamed with his good friend Mario Batali; Dogfish Head beers feature prominently at Batali’s Eataly. Taking inspiration from the anti-food waste campaign WastED, the duo decided to brew a beer that included unsellable produce from Eataly Chicago. The result was their “WasteNOT” Pruno—made with the addition of overripe tomatoes, rotten grapefruit, ugli fruit, stale bread and Demerara sugar, in the style of a “pruno,” a fermented beverage prisoners illegally make from whatever fermentable scraps they can get their hands on.
Though it all sounds a bit bizarre, as you can see at the end of the video, the final product earned plenty of praise, as Dogfish Head beers typically do. The whole episode presents a nice message about the potentials of making beer from items that would otherwise go to waste—though I’d probably trust Calagione and Batali’s ability to make something delicious out of that waste than your average prisoner.