State’s first black-owned brewery creates positive change in Woodinville

  • Written by Madeline Coats
Business partners Rodney Hines (left) and Todd Herriott (right) founded Métier Brewing Company in 2018. Photo courtesy of Métier Brewing. 


A family friendly, dog-friendly,  bike-friendly and beer-friendly brewing company has stolen the spotlight in the Warehouse District. The only black-owned brewery in Washington state is taking strides to create a stronger community in Woodinville. 

Métier Brewing Company is celebrating Black History Month with the release of its new Trail Blazer Pale Ale, which pays tribute to African American world champion cyclist Marshall Walter “Major” Taylor and the Major Taylor Project.

“This is a huge foundation that we support,” said Bailey Kroeger, community program coordinator at Métier. “This is a program started by Cascade Bicycle Club for youth in low-income and diverse communities.” 

She said the program reaches more than 500 youth annually around King and Pierce counties and provides them with access to bicycles and bike routes. The Major Taylor Project allows students to explore various forms of cycling, while also integrating healthy living, road safety awareness and the importance of working toward goals.

Major Taylor was the first black cyclist to win an international sports title in 1899. Kroeger said biking groups across the country ride in honor of the infamous cyclist. 

Cascade Bicycle Club will lead a bike ride from Métier in Seattle to the Woodinville location on Saturday, Feb. 29. The total ride length is just over 20 miles and ends with lots of beer, most notably, the Trail Blazer. 

“The proceeds from this new beer support the Major Taylor Project,” Kroeger said. “This has actually been our most popular beer ever since we came out with it.”

She said this dry-hopped, citrusy pale ale has already been raising revenue since the end of 2019. Aside from the featured drink, Métier offers a variety of award-winning beers, local cider and nitro cold brew coffee. 

On the day of the event, a local DJ will play music inside the brewing company and BeanFish Food Truck will provide Japanese cuisine outside. The event will also include a silent auction to benefit the project. Kroeger said items vary from a season pass for bike rides with Cascade to a signed discography from Macklemore.

The bottle release party is Métier’s first big event of the year, although the company has been located in the Warehouse District for nearly two years. The Woodinville location was previously occupied by Des Voigne Cellars and Brewing, Kroeger said. 

The transformed space serves a variety of purposes, including pop-up shops, private events, presentations, sports games and film showings. She said several murals in the beer hall were created by local artists of color.

There is also a kid area with books, toys and games to keep children entertained while parents enjoy a drink. Kroger joked that the venue hosts more first birthday parties than adult birthday parties. 

She said about 10 people run the entire operation. Business partners Rodney Hines and Todd Herriott founded the company in 2018 with a mission to create a community for people to connect.

Herriott also owns Métier Racing and Coffee in Seattle’s Capitol Hill, where he focuses on cycling services. Riders participating in the event will leave from the Seattle location Saturday, Feb. 29, at 11 a.m.

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