What’s it about?

“Brewing Up A Business” by the founder of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Sam Calagione, is an exciting narrative-style business book that opens your eyes to the previously undiscovered secrets to business and success. With this book, Calagione takes you along on a rollercoaster ride through his own life, showing you the ups and downs he faced while still giving you clear and concise advice on how to succeed in your given business field.

About the author:

Sam Calagione is an author, actor, and head and founder of Dogfish Head Brewery. Dogfish Brewery is an exceptionally successful brewing company based in Milton, Delaware. Calagione wrote “Brewing Up A Business,” a great guide, based on his personal experience, on how you can reach a successful business beyond your dreams.


You might not give the impression of a successful person and still be one:

People categorize those who seem average and controversial – the ones that break the rules and act unconventionally – as the group that will most likely not succeed. If any of those groups happen to succeed, they will defy all the odds of nature.

However, those assumptions are false in every way. All of the above rules do not apply to someone just because he is different. If anything, this kind of community is the one that holds young and ambitious people back. They feel limited to some brackets that they live up and don’t allow their wings to spread. 

The author tells his story of getting kicked out of high school only two-months pre-graduation. He begins his book on the note of disappointment he received from his parent and self. However, while this was the lowest point of his life, it was also the match to his highest one. A turning point to the path of starting a business.

The author doesn’t deny that he was quite the handful, always rebelling and challenging authorities. Due to his usual reckless manner at school, it was not a surprise that everyone around him thought that he’d never succeed in life.

His creativity did capture some attention, but never to the point of considering any potential of his ability to succeed. This creativity bloomed his business “Dogfish Head Craft Brewery,” and led it to flourish.

There are no specific limits or rules as to how a person would succeed. One should believe in his self and never to fit his mind into society’s standard.


To reach success, you should do everything in your power to make your business work, but keep contact with other parts of your life as well:

Although there is no standard way in which your personality should be like to succeed, there are some qualities that you have to grasp for you to make the best out of your business.

Self-discovery: before you reach anywhere with your business, you should know yourself first. This is much deeper than knowing what you like for dinner or if you are a cat or a dog person. You should acknowledge your darkest truest self and what drives your soul – what pushes you and extends your limits. The author was lucky to discover that all the creativity and resourcefulness alongside the angst he had dragged him into being a person who runs a successful brewery that stands out significantly in the beer business. 

Inspiration: for you to unleash your creativity, you must first be inspired. Inspiration can be the most crucial part of your business growth journey. Every great work needs a source of inspiration, and a great way to find it is by reading books. Books contain an unlimited universe of inspirations. You can be inspired by all kinds of books, even those that are not related to your business major – as long as you keep reading as much as you can. The author sets an example of him being inspired to start his business by a kid’s book that has nothing to do with a brewery. He alone is a living proof that inspiration attracts creativity, and it lays in the places where you least expect it.

Acceptance of help: accepting help is vital to a successful business, and might come in all forms. For instance, the author got his in the form of a homebrewer he found standing outside his brewery. This man, Doug Griffith, was so excited about a brewery opening. He ended up helping the author get things done better than he would by himself. Help can also appear less pleasantly, like a critic coming in and rumbling about all the wrong things in your business. The important thing is always to see the comments that you get from others as a source of help. Always accept help in an open mind.

Passion: it might not be a major thing to be passionate about to run a business, but running a business is difficult, and it is the passion that drives you through the hard times. Sometimes, you would have every single element of a successful business and yet never quite reach the peek just because you are missing passion. You should know what you are passionate about before you go on and invest your time and money in a business that is just not for you. The author has a passion for bringing a fresh taste to beer lovers. 

Balance: all things should be balanced, and that is applied to business as well. It would help if you learned to keep things equal between your business life and family life. You want a successful business, but you don’t want to miss out on your children growing up. Success doesn’t even feel good when you don’t have your loved ones there to support you. If you need at both work and home, go to your family and take your work with you. You don’t know; they might inspire you! 


Failure is not always the way to success. Some problems can be avoided if you learn how to deal with them properly:

A considerable part of building a business the right way is to develop suitable goods and services. One small mistake could ruin your business’s fate for good. It’s not easy to know what steps you should take for the better sake of your business. That’s why the author suggests you’d be careful and always keep your eyes on your industry’s growth.

 This means that you should regularly pay attention to what goes in and what goes out. You should do research, ask for advice, and learn from other people’s mistakes.

Always keep an eye out for news regarding your field. Read about those who followed the path you plan on following and learn from their fails and successes. 

The other step is to find your niche. This is crucial because your product should reflect your story and relate to your brand’s identity. 

It would be best if you learned how to embrace weaknesses as it’s the only way you’ll be able to work around them. It is a must to be aware of your limits so that you’ll know what your business can and cannot do. 


Releasing your product publically doesn’t have to drain your bank account, you need to present the customer with something to look forward to:

Publicity is something that most entrepreneurs find challenging. It is not easy to find suitable marketing agents on a budget. However, it quite easy to handle your marketing by yourself. What do customers want to see?

  1. Marketing with a consistent and unique way is distinctive: when a customer takes notice of a conveyed product – say on a billboard, a magazine, a blog, or an ad – they want to catch uniqueness and consistency. You can’t show the same marketing voice as your competitors. You should stand out to be unique. Also, customers do not prefer confusion in style; they want to be presented consistently with the same tone.
  2. Marketing is established around your product’s beliefs and benefits: ideally, what your product listing talks about is how you want your product to be. Spend extra effort, letting people know how the product will be good for them and what it stands for. The product is the star of the advert, so focus on it.
  3. Marketing motivates the potential buyer to do something: your marketing has to include a promotion. Promoting your product has a lot to do with attracting buyers, even if it doesn’t seem like it. Phrases like “Buy Now” or “Click Here” go along way – more than you think. Whatever you show or write them should make them want to do something.