Sam Adams Crowdsourcing Its Next Beer

You choose the color, clarity, malt, hops and yeast

Samuel Adams is hoping the beer it's preparing for SXSW will be a crowd-pleaser. Hence, it's letting the crowd tell them how to make it. The brewer is teaming up with social-media wizard Guy Kawasaki to create what it claims is the first "collaborative ale," by having followers of Sam Adams's myriad social networks vote on the color, clarity, and malt/hops/yeast ratios. The winning combination will be used as the recipe for the new brew, which will be available only in select Austin, Texas-area bars during SXSW and at the Boston brewery. It's a cool idea—Mountain Dew and Coca-Cola have done similar things—but clearly no one at Sam Adams read Susan Cain's New York Times article about the pitfalls of collaboration. They may wish they had once the beer snobs roll in and hijack this project.