It’s been a big week for Washington ciderhouse Yonder. Just a day after the Seattle City Council introduced new legislation that may help save its garage retail space in the Phinney Ridge/Greenwood neighborhood, the company announced that a Ballard taproom was on the way in partnership with Yakima-based Bale Breaker Brewing Company. The new spot — called, appropriately enough, the Bale Breaker & Yonder Taproom — will take over the space formerly occupied by Populuxe Brewing at 826 NW 49th Street, with an eye on debuting sometime this summer.
Though Bale Breaker has its headquarters in Yakima, its Topcutter IPA and other beers have expanded to a wide retail presence across the Puget Sound region since the brewery opened in 2013. But this will be the first time the family-owned operation has set down roots in Seattle with a fixed location. Yonder also got its start in central Washington, too, harvesting apples in Wenatchee for its variety of dry and semi-sweet ciders.
“Because our beer focuses on showcasing the best of our homegrown ingredients, partnering with Yonder Cider was an easy decision,” said Bale Breaker co-founder Meghann Quinn in a statement. “We’ll bring the hops from Yakima, they’ll bring the apples from Wenatchee, and we’ll showcase the best of the east side of Washington to those on the west.”
When it opens, the new Ballard location will have more than 6,200 of outdoor space (plus fire pits) and a shared taproom, along with a rotating selection of food trucks. The offerings will focus on seasonal and specialty releases from both businesses, with some onsite production.
There may also be some spirits on the way from both brands, in part as a result of a quirky Washington rule. Cideries and breweries usually can’t share a tasting room together, but shared distilleries are allowed. Bale Breaker and Yonder will launch one at the same Ballard location, acting as research and development site for harder alcohol that aligns best with their products (think whiskey and apple brandy).
In the meantime, Yonder is still in the process of a battle to keep its small, garage-based Seattle retail space after someone tried to get it shut down for good. Yonder Bar closed to avoid fines related to technical violations around small home-based businesses. But the new council bill in the works aims to loosen restrictions soon, allowing the operation to reopen. If that happens, 2021 could shape up nicely for Yonder, which will join Seattle Cider Company, Capitol Hill Cider, Schilling, and others in the growing local cider scene.
- New Seattle Bill Would Loosen Restrictions on Food and Drink Microbusinesses [ESEA]
- Yonder Bar Opens in Phinney Ridge [ESEA]