​Bale Breaker, Yonder Cider Make the Laws Work for Them

Laws in each state dictate how a brewery has to operate. Finding ways to make those laws work in your favor can sometimes be a fun activity in mental gymnastics.

Growing up together in the craft beverage industry, Bale Breaker Brewing and Yonder Cider​ have wanted to join forces somehow, but the laws in Washington prohibit a place with a beer license and another place with a wine license to create a joint taproom.

But, as of this year, distilleries can work with breweries and wineries in the state, so Wise Fool Spirits has been launched as a joint effort by the two facilities. 

“We have some general knowledge of distilling through various partnerships over the years, but look forward to diving further into this new craft and creating something unique for our space,” said Meghann Quinn, the owner and Business Manager of Bale Breaker, and Yonder founder Caitlin Braam. “Apple Brandy using Yonder Cider and whiskey using wash from Bale Breaker? We’ll see!”

Licensing and layout have been two of the largest hurdles to date​, the duo told Brewer. 

​”​Because this is a new law and since we’re one of the first to take advantage of it, we’re all learning as we go, as are the people who put the laws in place​,” they explained. ​”​There are a lot of small intricacies to the law — such as glassware needing to be marked for each business, the brewery and distillery needing to be within a certain proximity of each other, and so on​.

“That makes this project a little more complicated than a traditional taproom. But it’s worth it to create such a unique space and one that’s unlike any other in Seattle.​”

Quinn and Braam have known each other for years. 

“When we found the space, which is located in Ballard’s Brewery District, we knew we wanted to create a new kind of experience,” they said. “By combining forces in a joint taproom, we’re able to offer drinkers an entire array of beverages.”

With 32 taps, the location will have beer, cider, seltzer, wine … and even some collaborations that blur the line, they noted. 

“We’re also excited to introduce people who are traditionally beer drinkers to cider, and vice versa,” they said. “Both Yonder and Bale Breaker are from Central Washington, and by partnering up on this taproom, we’ll really be able to showcase all that Central Washington has to offer.”

The two companies recently hosted a virtual event to show off the new place, which plans to open later this summer.

​Photo courtesy Bale Breaker

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