Big Water Coffee Cooperative

Left to right: Joe Defoe, Danielle Ewalt, Jon Ewalt, Jim Homann and Jason Reichel. Front: Ramona Ewalt and Edison Ewalt: new and old owners of Big Water Coffee Roasters which is now employee-owned and called Big Water Roasters Cooperative.

Three forty-somethings, all with first names beginning with “J” (Jim, Joe, and Jason), have recently become the new owners of Big Water Coffee Roasters in Bayfield. What’s different about this business versus the one Danielle and Jon Ewalt started eight years ago and sold to them two weeks ago, is the current one is employee-owned, now called Big Water Coffee Roasters Cooperative.

“The papers got signed last Wednesday, so we’re newly minted,” said Jason Reichel, wholesale director at Big Water, as well as one of the new owners. From the café’s standpoint, plans are to be business-as-usual, “providing the same great service the café’s always provided,” said Reichel who, prior to working at Big Water, was service administrator at Colectivo Coffee Roasters in Milwaukee.

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