Gimlet's 'Reply All' Halts Production on Bon Appetit Miniseries

Smartphone and its Earphones
HOMAS SAMSON/AFP via Getty Images

The series — dubbed 'The Test Kitchen' — won't move forward after the departure of 'Reply All' reporter Sruthi Pinnamaneni and host PJ Vogt.

Gimlet podcast Reply All is going on hiatus and won't air the final two episodes of its miniseries about the toxic environment at food magazine Bon Appétit as it reckons with allegations about its own troubling work culture.

The decision comes a week after senior reporter Sruthi Pinnamaneni and co-host P.J. Vogt stepped down from their roles on the show after former colleagues described how they pushed back against unionization efforts at Gimlet and worked against efforts to diversify the staff in late 2018 and early 2019 prior to the company's sale to Spotify.

Co-host Alex Goldman released a statement on the Reply All podcast feed on Thursday morning apologizing to current and former colleagues, listeners and the interview subjects of the Bon Appétit miniseries, "The Test Kitchen."

"Last week, days after the publication of the second episode in what was supposed to be a four-part series, former colleagues of ours at Gimlet publicly described multiple instances of troubling behavior from both Sruthi and my longtime cohost P.J. Vogt," he said. "These accounts prompted a reckoning on our team about the work culture at Reply All. They left us asking whether we could continue airing this story without interrogating ourselves and what has unfolded at Gimlet. We now understand that we should never have published this series as reported, and the fact that we did was a systemic editorial failure."

Reply All will keep the first two episodes of "The Test Kitchen" available on its feed but will add a disclaimer.

Goldman said that the Reply All team will pause production on new episodes of the show while they "get to the bottom of what went wrong here," and that they plan to update listeners on what happened "as best we can."

Goldman and Vogt premiered Reply All in 2014 as the second show from Alex Blumberg and Matt Lieber's podcast startup, Gimlet. It has drawn fans for its ability to tell compelling stories about the internet and online culture.

Pinnamaneni and Vogt have apologized and both are expected to remain with the company in new roles. Last week, Gimlet managing director Lydia Polgreen wrote in a memo to staff, "From the moment I arrived at Gimlet, it was clear that our culture needed work, and that there were big things that needed to change to make this a better, more equitable place. We have spent a lot of time working to make those changes in partnership with many of you. These events are a reminder of how much work remains."

In a series of tweets that accompanied his audio statement, Goldman made clear that Reply All would not be ending and thanked the many people who work on the show. "This isn’t the end of Reply All," he wrote. "We’re just figuring out what’s next."