Make-your-own just one feature of Water 2 Wine

Buyers encouraged to taste before they buy

May 29, 2012

Like the classic television sitcom "Cheers," Larry Van Hoveln aspires to make his new business venture a place "where everybody knows your name."

"Wine is best enjoyed in a social setting, so I look forward to getting to know our customers by name and developing a regular clientele," said Hoveln, owner of Water 2 Wine. He opened the winery in early May in Brookfield with his wife, Barb.

The couple - and their sons, Andrew and Scott, who invested in the Texas-based franchise - saw a prime business opportunity in becoming the first Water 2 Wine location east of the Mississippi River. The Van Hovelns were particularly drawn to the operation's rigorous wine-making procedure and buy-back policy.

"Water 2 Wine offers 20 times less sulfites than most commercial wines, and no histamines," Larry said. "We want our customers to experience our wine without having these preservatives, causing them headaches and triggering allergy symptoms.

"We also encourage them to taste the wine before they buy it to make sure they like it. Yet, our business plan is strong enough to guarantee that we'll buy the wine back if it's not what they tasted in the store."

All of Water 2 Wine Brookfield's products are made on site at its nearly 3,000-square-foot location at The Plaza in the 17000 block of West Bluemound Road. Nearly 100 varieties of wines - ranging from sweet and fruity, to port - grace its shelves, made from grapes harvested from vineyards in 14 countries, including the United States, France and Chile.

Larry said customers who mix their own wine alongside his franchise's experienced wine-making staff can expect a cost savings when their batch reaches completion. That takes 45 days, on average.

"People can order a custom-designed label for the bottle of wine they make themselves, come in at any time for a tasting, reserve the winery for a private party or find out what wine goes with a particular dish," he said. "We consider ourselves to be the ultimate wine experience."

For information on Water 2 Wine, visit

If you would like to suggest a business to be featured in the Business Spotlight, send an email to or call (262) 446-6643.


BUSINESS: Water 2 Wine

ADDRESS: The Plaza, 17135 W. Bluemound Road, Suite H, Brookfield

PHONE: (262) 784-9463

OWNER: Larry Van Hoveln



PEARLS OF WISDOM: "We want to be your place to have fun and enjoy a glass of wine with family and friends."



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