*This is the eighty-first post in an on-going chronicle dubbed the Great Wisconsin Brewery Tour. Follow the journey here.*
Kozy Yak Brewery
197 N Main St
Rosholt, WI 54473
Visit date: 10/22/16
*Please check website for hours.*
1) How many different beers?
3-4 on tap, 40-50 total.
2) How long operational?
4 years (started in wine)
3) Why? (here, this, etc)
Started growing grapes nearby, needed beer to keep wine in business.
Rosholt, Wisonsin: population 506.
5) What sets you apart?
First brewery/winery in the state. Very small-batch.
6) How did you get your name?
Mispronunciation of owner’s last name, Kosiec.
“You may have noticed there’s no TVs here. You’re forced to talk.”
Finding someone and something to talk about is easy at Kozy Yak Brewery in Rosholt, as it’s all contained inside a small house that could be your next door neighbor’s. As we walked up the front steps, we were immediately greeted by a lively group of travelers stationed on the front porch. This jovial and inviting conversation set the tone for what turned out to be a very pleasant stay.
I wasn’t kidding about the neighbor’s house thing; the whole space is a converted first-floor home. The kitchen is now a bar, the living room is a cozy seating area.
Shortly after we arrived, the whole place filled up and felt like a Thanksgiving dinner with long-lost relatives yammering about. Our positions at the counter afforded us easy access to both the house beers and wines as well as the owner, Rich.
We were there for maybe an hour, and Rich spent 55 minutes of that telling us everything about his ventures: from his famous pizza recipes, to homemade dandelion wine, to his own “boutique brewery.”
Super floral hop taste with almost no bite. Downright delicious.
Rolling Stone British Strong Ale
Traditional; makes you feel like a man, man.
Cold coffee with booze.
“We’re a very small operation. Everything is ours.”
Kozy Yak’s tiny size, and the fact that it’s not Rich’s sole source of income, afford this brewmaster some luxuries: he can simply “pick the ingredients, try it out, and adjust things accordingly.”
“We’re trying to have some fun here.”
The passion and knowledge Rich has for his brews and wines came pouring out in each word. It was infections, and in no time it felt like the whole house was one big (boozed) family. Kozy Yak’s name may have originated as a mispronunciation, but cozy is a perfect description.