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Washington's First Cooperative Brewery Plans to Open in Greenwood Mid-Summer

Flying Bike is nearly ready to land.

Flying Bike in progress
Flying Bike in progress
Flying Bike [Facebook]

Three months back, Eater reported that Washington's first cooperative brewery (and the fourth in the nation) would open this June in Greenwood. Now comes word that it will probably be another two months until we see Flying Bike (so-named because a co-op brewery first seemed to the founders as "crazy" and "audacious" a plan as an airborne bicycle) at 8570 Greenwood Ave. N, and the team also has other news.

Last month, the co-op signed on Kevin Forhan as Head Brewer, most recently of the RAM Restaurant and Brewery chain, and formerly of at Pike Brewing Company and Elysian Brewing Company.

"Brewing is hard work, and there are always challenges, but the very things I've found most rewarding—the daily, hands-on craft of it, the collaborative problem-solving, the shared talents, and the direct connection with the consumer, with the neighborhood, with the greater brewing and beer-loving community, and with the larger community beyond that—happen to be very emphatically ... what the Flying Bike is all about," Forhan says.

Left: Flying Bike's new Head Brewer Kevin Forhan

Flying Bike is still planning on six to eight beers to start in its 3,000-square-foot brewery and tasting room that seats just under 100. Design-wise, expect, appropriately, a community feel, with the skills and art of members featured throughout, according to vice president and attorney-by-day Brian Cadwell. Specifically, a woodworking member is crafting tabletops from lumber reclaimed from brewery studs, and two artist members are painting large-scale murals on the wall.

Along with their brews, Flying Bike will offer snack food, soda, and possibly cider to start. The neighboring Munch Café has already developed a Flying Bike burger, and is planning more collaborations on the way.

How to get involved in Flying Bike: prospective members fill out a short application and pay a lifetime fee of $150 to gain a vote in the co-op's decisions. Eventually, once the brewery is profitable, members will also receive an REI-style patronage refund (proportional to a member's spending) from Flying Bike.