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Smithsonian Re-airs 'Drinking' Special as Tribute

Smithsonian Channel said it will re-air the special United States Of Drinking on Friday, May 15, at 9 p.m. ET/PT, in tribute to the program's host, food writer Josh Ozersky, who died on May 4 while in Chicago to attend the prestigious Beard Awards.

Ozersky was 47 and had written popular books ("The Hamburger: A History"), launched the New York magazine food blog Grub Street and also hosted events (Meatopia) and a Web series (, the blog reported. Eater also reported today that funds were being raised for a memorial bench in Ozersky's hometown of Portland, Ore.

Smithsonian Channel said Ozersky’s wife, Danit Lidor, said that the repeat airing would be a “touching tribute” to a man that the Washington Post called “the food world’s master provocateur.” 

In United States of Drinking, which aired in November 2014, Ozersky explored how culture, science and history all come together in some of America’s favorite drinks, including moonshine, distilled spirits, beer, wine, and cocktails, the channel noted. Ozersky talked about his love of food and drink during the program: “I spend a lot of time going around the country eating things, and talking to chefs and talking to bartenders and wine directors, and ranchers and seafood men, and line cooks and butchers. My life consists primarily of eating, drinking and thinking about eating and drinking.” In the program, Ozersky met with some of America’s top moonshiners, brew masters, vintners, craft distillers and mixologists, and went behind the scenes to deconstruct the process and sample their wares on his hunt for the quintessential American drink.