About this project
Thank you so much for checking out the California BrewMaster’s project. This has been two years in the making, and is something I hold really near and dear to my heart. So okay, what the hell is this thing and why should you care?
California BrewMasters is a collection of interviews and photographic portraits of some of California’s best brewers. I’ve traveled to over 45 breweries around every corner of the state talking to the men and women responsible for the golden state’s most delicious brews. I'm launching this Kickstarter to create a beautiful, 200 page, 10"x10" hard cover coffee table book to share this project with the world. We plan to have it ready for distribution by June.
You can see more, including some great teaser content, at www.CABrewMasters.com
As a photographer and craft beer fan, I wanted to create a project that hadn’t been done before. I noticed that while a lot of books were written about the beer itself, or as a guide book to which breweries to visit, no one had really been paying attention to the men and women responsible for all this delicious beer we have. What’s going on in the mind of Sierra Nevada founder Ken Grossman’s? How does Mitch Steele from Stone brew such delicious IPAs? Why not talk to them and find out, and better yet bring their faces out of the brewery and onto the page in, so you can really get a connection to the guy spending countless hours bringing you a fresh, delicious, well crafted product to sip on?
So a little over two years ago I set out to do just that, and today we have the project you see before you. I photographed these brewers in their natural environments, in the brewery and in the communities in which they work and live. We would then interviewed them, having an open conversation about their history, their philosophy to brewing, what they look for in a good beer, their thoughts on the current state of the craft beer industry, you name it - we tried to ask it. These interviews will be transcribed and edited to go hand in hand with each portrait.
The result is a truly insiders perspective on the current California beer scene.
Here’s the list of those involved:
- The Bruery, Tyler King
- Ballast Point, Yuseff Cherney
- Alpine, Pat McIlhenney
- Pizza Port Carlsbad, Ignacio Cervantes
- Noble Ale Works, Evan Price
- Karl Strauss, Paul Segura
- Hangar 24, Been Cook
- Beachwood BBQ, Julian Shrago
- Ale Smith, Peter Zien
- Ballast Point Home Brew Mart, Cobly Chandler
- Stone, Mitch Steele
- Cismontane, Evan Weinberg
- Taps, Victor Novak
- Kern River, Kyle Smith
- Gordon Biersch, Dan Gordon
- Fifty Fifty, Todd Ashman
- Sierra Nevada, Ken Grossman
- Moonlight, Brian Hunt
- Maglonia, David McLean
- 21st Amendment, Shaun O’Sullivan
- Moylans, Denise Jones
- Anderson Valley, Fal Allen
- Bear Republic, Richard Norgrove
- Bison Brewing Co, Daniel Del Grande
- Firestone Walker, Matt Brynildson
- Eagle Rock, Jeremy Raub
- Lagunitas, Tony MagGee
- Drakes, John Gillooly
- Russian River, Vinnie Cilurzo
- Marin Brewing Co, Arne Johnson
- Rubicon, Scott Cramlet
- Anchor, Mark CarpenterTriple Rock, Jeff Kimpe
- North Coast, Mark ReudrichLost Abbey, Tomme Arthur
- Golden Road, Tony Yanow and Meg Gill
- Green Flash, Chuck Silva
- Jeff Bagby, Bagby Beer
- Craftsman, Mark Jilg
- Ritual, Owen Williams and Steve Dunkerken
- Napa Smith, Don Barkley
and more to come! See a full list HERE
I’ve partnered with a great publisher, Bruce Glassman from Georgian Bay Books, who’s responsible for awesome beer book titles like “San Diego’s Top Brewers,” “Colorado’s Top Brewers,” and “Brew Food” to bring this project into book form. It will be approximately a 10x10" hardcover with dust jacket, around 200 pages, printed in America. It will retail for $35, but if you pre-order through this Kickstarter you can get it for $30.
So yes, $25,000 is a lot of mullah... so you deserve to know where that money’s going. First off, where the money isn’t going. All the photo shoots, travel, room and board, meals, paying for assistants, equipment, etc… to all 45+ of these guys and gals, have been on my own dime, and I’m not making a cent back on this. I do this because this project is truly a labor of love, but also because it seems unfair to have you guys pay for me hanging out with brewers drinking their beer. That just seems cruel.
So here’s what the money does cover. $18,000 of it goes directly to the creation of the book itself, which means editing each interview and photo, layout and creative design, production of the book itself to get copies, delivery of those copies, etc. A little over $2,000 is going towards the transcription of the audio interviews alone. The remaining funds are going towards bringing this Kickstarter to life and paying for all the cool shwagg we’re offering… and anything past that (we figure around $3,000) is going towards promoting this book so that it reaches as many beer fans as humanly possible. Travel to beer festival throughout California, paying for vendor booths at these festivals and at beer conferences, etc.
We have some really great incentives for our backers that I think every beer fan will really enjoy. Donate even as little as $5 and we want to say thank you, we’ll be posting your name onto our CABrewMasters.com website (check it out to view some example chapters and see who else you know that’s donated).
At the $15 mark you get a pretty kick ass California-themed bottle opener key chain. It’s made by my friend Brandon based in Portland, Oregon, hand made out of stainless steel (a favorite material of brewers everywhere) and yes, it really works to open beers!
At the $30 level you get what you came here for in the first place, one of the books. You’ll receive this book before anyone else does, we’re set to have copies ready to go by late May / early June.
For $50 you get the key chain and a SIGNED copy of the book by me, the author.
We've designed a bunch of incentives specifically for this Kickstarter. You can read about them to the right of this text, but the growler, t-shirt, and poster have all been designed by me for this project. I mean come on now, who doesn't want a California BrewMasters beer growler?? You can fill up your favorite brew and enjoy it while reading the book. Double Whammy!
I've designed a poster for this campaign as well, it's 20x30", and features every brewery and brewer in the project with where they're located. It took me a long time to make... and I think you'll really like it hanging on your wall.
Last is perhaps my favorite. If you really want the ultimate experience, our $1,000 donors will have the opportunity to get a brewery tour and tasting with a brewer featured in the book. This is limited to the brewer’s availability and schedule. Also receive a signed copy of the book, an 11x14 print, and growler.
Feel free to direct any comments or questions to me, I'm happy to answer them as quickly as I can! We'll be sure to post any updates to the campaign and ongoings of the creation of the book as well, so you guys can stay informed.
Risks and challenges
If fully funded, this project is ready to be turned into a full-fledged coffee table book on schedule. We shouldn't encounter too many problems concerning the production or distribution of the book, many of these channels have already been established. We have a great support staff of designers and editors helping out to create the best possible book so we're ready to ensure a quality product for beer fans everywhere.
One obstacle I encounter all the time is the question of "why didn't (insert brewery here) make it into the book?" The fact is there were just so many breweries to choose from, we made our best efforts to bring you a list as complete as possible of breweries and brewers we respected and enjoyed. That's not to say some didn't slip through the cracks, but we really tried hard (really, we did!) to bring you a great cross section of breweries from around the state, from the big guys to the small guys, North to South. We also asked many of the brewers themselves who they respected and who they thought deserved to be in a project like this. Hopefully this will be such a hit we'll be able to interview another set of brewers!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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