Bitter & Esters Presents: Derek Dellinger, author of The Fermented Man and Brewmaster of Kent Falls Brewing Company

On Thursday, November 10, 2016 NYC’s Bitter and Esters homebrew shop hosted an event featuring Derek Dellinger, author of The Fermented Man and Brewmaster of Kent Falls Brewing Company. Despite some camera battery and audio difficulties I was able to film Derek entire presentation. In turn, after sorting through the footage I decided to split it into three parts; a podcast episode focused on an overview of his year eating only fermented foods, a video about vegetable fermentation, and a video about Kent Falls Brewing Company.

Part One: Derek’s Year as The Fermented Man

Book Synopsis: On January 1, 2014, homebrewer and writer Derek Dellinger began a journey that would change nearly everything he thought he knew about fermented food and beverage―and as a beer expert, he knew a lot. For an entire year, Dellinger would eat or drink only products that had been created by microbes. Exploring the vast world of fermentation, Dellinger became the living embodiment of its cultural and nutritional power―he became the Fermented Man.

In this entertaining and informative narrative, Dellinger catalogs his year spent on this unorthodox diet, revealing insights about the science of fermentation, as well as its cultural history, culinary value, and nutritional impact along the way. He goes beyond yogurt and sauerkraut to show us how fermentation occurs in a wide range of foods we might never have expected, and is at the root of many unique delicacies around the world. From foraging for living bacteria in the modern American grocery store, to sampling mucousy green Century Eggs in Chinatown, to an epic winter quest to Iceland for rotten shark meat, Dellinger investigates a realm of forgotten foods that is endlessly complex and surprisingly flavorful. And despite our collective aversion to bacteria, Dellinger’s experience and research reveals that it is these same microbes that may hold the key to our health and diets. 

With bonus recipes for readers who are eager to get off the page and into the kitchen, The Fermented Man is an adventure story, culinary history, and science project all in one.

Topics Discussed:

  • Inspiration behind The Fermented Man and challenges of eating 100% fermented foods for an entire year. [0:00-7:58]
  • New approaching to eating and calories as a result of his experiences. [7:59-10:50]
  • 3 Weirdest things that Derek ate over the year. [10:51-17:50] Note: This clip was filmed/recorded with my cell phone so you may need to raise your volume while listening to it.
  • Derek’s diet since January 1, 2015 / effects and benefits of eating nutrient dense foods. [17:51-22:04]
  • Ending credits: Sponsors of The Brewed Palate podcast. [22:05-end]


Part Two: Simple Vegetable Fermentation & More:

After sharing an overview of his book and answering questions about eating fermented foods Derek discussed the fundamentals of vegetable fermentation and then gave a quick demonstration of preparing vegetables (carrots in this case) for fermentation. All while discussing some of his favorite vegetables to ferment and then eat.


Part Three: From Homebrewer to Pro-brewer: Derek Dellinger, Brewmaster of Kent Falls Brewing Company

Before wrapping up this event Bitter and Esters owner John LaPolla asked Derek to talk about his journey from being a homebrewer to becoming the brewmaster (head brewer) at Kent Falls Brewing Company. In turn, this video includes Derek’s brewing history, the history of Kent Falls, the development of and inspiration behind its lineup of beers, the brewery’s integration of agriculture into its brewing practices, and plans for the development of its barrel program.

For more information visit:

Kent Falls Brewing’s website

Derek’s Blog

The Fermented Man website (link above)

Bitter and Esters’ website




About Barry W

Israel (formerly NJ) based sourdough baker and fermentation enthusiasts sharing his baking, fermenting, cooking, and brewing adventures on
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