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2022 sounds more like a sci-fi move than a year…  It’s one of those years where you have to start accepting that it is the 20’s and no longer the 2000’s.  It is a whole other kettle of fish!  I hope and pray for a decade where we focus on moving forward.  Moving forward is the focus here at K4!

This past week was our 9 year anniversary.  It still feels like year 5 or 6 because we have dealt with a lot over the past few years – internally and externally – and it feels like we have been somewhat frozen in time trying to figure out how our business will be existentially threatened next…  However, Year 10 is the year that we chart a course for a new continent, for new constellations and new adventures on the sea of chaos (a little dramatic, I realize).  We are kicking off our 10th year by moving toward all cans for our packaged beers.  Despite the global can shortage, we feel that we need to streamline and automate our packaging line as much as possible and that means we need to drop the glass.
We have overhauled our flagship beer lineup by adding a rotating variety pack of our beloved Fantasy Factory, and by adding Hawk Jones Session IPA and Midwesty Pilsner while dropping our previous bottled beer brands.  This means that the 4th beer we ever brewed – Lady Luck – is getting retired for now.  It is the end of an era for our beer lineup but we are loving these new beers!  Hawk Jones is an awesome, crushable session IPA and this beer is dedicated to Major Rocky “Hawk” Jones who was a F-16 fighter pilot based in Madison at the 115th Fighter Wing about two blocks away from the brewery.  He crashed his jet in late 2020 during a training flight leaving behind his beautiful wife and two young boys.  This beer is dedicated to Hawk, the Airmen of the 115th Fighter Wing, and all servicemen and women in our great country (military, police, fire, and all emergency services personnel).  Our society would not hold together without the spirit of Service to one another and all of these people remind us to be better!  Midwesty embodies everything we love about a great Wisconsin beer while tied up on the lake, sitting on the ice, or mowing the lawn.  We wanted it to be light enough to have two, tree beers without any problem but also tasty enough to remind you of what beer is supposed to be.  This beer is causing us to re-examine our shift-beer policy…It’s flowing a little too easily in the taproom at the end of the day! But, damnit, a cold Midwesty at the end of a hard day’s work is what this is all about!
We are also replacing our seasonal lineups with two, focused series – World Beer Tour and Happy Fun Time Series.  These two series will each have one release per month of very limited, one-off beers.  The World Beer Tour will allow us to play with traditional beer styles from all over the world.  It is what we refer to as “beer” beers.  We want to make sure there is always a place for beer as the world has known it for hundreds and thousands of years, in addition to emerging styles.  The Happy Fun Time series is a place for us to play with hype beers, adjuncts, double this, triple that, fruits, teas, sours, and anything else we want to do.  All of these beers are going to be made in very limited quantities to help make sure they do not clog up the store shelves as we rotate through them quickly so if you see one, grab it!  As we ramp up these two series we will need to figure out how many cases “limited” means so please be patient as we figure out a balanced allocation.  When in doubt, stop in the taproom to find everything we are making including our monthly pilot beer releases in the taproom.
In addition to a whole new beer calendar, we plan to continue to evolve our hard seltzer offerings, our barrel-aged offerings and we are working our way into the broader beverage category.  This year will start our relationship with the Wisco Pop brand.  We are taking over the production and sales of Wisco Pop sodas and Sparkle sparkling water drinks.  These are drinks that we have really enjoyed having in the taproom and we are excited to get involved in helping the brands grow throughout Wisconsin and beyond!  The first step will be to shift Wisco Pop into cans.  You will start to see these cans in the market as we roll through February and into March.
Year 10 is going to be another crazy year!  We are so grateful to each and every one of you.  We would not have made it through the past two years (much less the seven before that) without the support of all of you and the hard work of our entire staff.  We have been blessed beyond measure and we hope to spend another year earning your support.  Come see us at the taproom and may God bless you in 2022!

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