When Condé Nast killed off 67-year-old Gourmet last October, it sent ripples through the food and publishing worlds, in part Ruth Reichl, the magazine’s popular editor, said she never saw it coming.
The publisher announced on Tuesday that it will revive the magazine this fall – as a digital application. The company described it as “one of the best-loved names in food reimagined as a new technology experience."
The app, Gourmet Live, will feature new content, but rely mostly on the magazine’s rich archive of articles and recipes. The app will be free to download, Condé Nast said.
Reichl, who was not present at the announcement, tweeted: “[T]hey're reviving the brand, not the magazine. Pity.”
Pity for print fans and a beloved editor, but it makes sense to try. After all, the magazine was hemorrhaging ad pages when the company pulled the plug. But the outcry that followed was loud enough that they at least consider keeping the brand alive in a form that doesn't require the hideous cost of paper and postage.
Last October, after a three month study by McKinsey & Company, Condé decided to cut Gourmet, Cookie, Modern Bride and Elegant Bride from its portfolio, part of 25 percent across-the-board budget cut.