Graham Kozak

Writer and Founder of Donut Chaser Coffee

Image

Please provide a personal bio for other members to get to know you

I’m Graham. I live just outside of Detroit, and I’m a writer for a national car magazine — which means that, from 9 to 5 (and beyond) I’m either test-driving cars, writing about cars or editing someone else’s work on the same. I'm always down to talk about two- and four-wheeled machines, but if that's not your speed I also enjoy gardening, architecture and history. 

In my free time, I love to create and improve things, even when the process is frustrating. Since my main hobbies are home improvement and classic car restoration, it’s frustrating as often as not. But even (or especially) during the most tedious tasks, I have plenty of time to think up ideas I’d like to realize…someday. Until now, I’ve never gotten around to moving beyond the “idle thought” phase. 

In many respects, my day job is a dream job — I’m fortunate to have driven an unbelievable range of vehicles in some amazing places. Beyond that, I’ve been lucky enough to meet and interview some truly inspiring people who have done incredible things, and to paraphrase one of them: Eventually, you get tired of seeing other people bring ideas you’ve had to life. 

Please provide an overview of the project(s) you'll be focusing on for the next 12 weeks as part of Unreal Collective.

On the surface, the idea is simple, and if feels attainable: Create a brand, Donut Chaser Coffee, that — at least initially — aims to bring good coffee and donuts to local car shows via a booth, cart or food truck. 

The idea stems from three things I’ve learned from a lifetime of attending way too many of these shows, both for work and for fun: 

1. They always start way too early in the morning. 
2. The coffee is universally terrible. 
3. It doesn’t have to be that way, at least when it comes to the coffee!

After years of kicking this idea around, it’s time to take the next step. My goal is to develop the Donut Chaser Coffee concept into something real: At the end of these 12 weeks, I want to be able to set up shop at a show. 

More than that, I will explore whether or not the Donut Chaser has a broader appeal and room to grow beyond the scope of the local Saturday cars-and-coffee parking lot (e.g., web-salable products, potential brick-and-mortar presence, and so on).