Grizzly Ciderworks debuts in Warehouse District

  • Written by Shannon Michael, Features Writer

Grizzley CiderworksPhoto by Shannon Michael. Grizzly Ciderworks co-founders Corey Haugen and Andy Petek stand behind the bar ready to serve up their hard cider at the taproom they share with Vessel Wines in Woodinville. Haugen is the cidermaker while Petek is in charge of marketing and brand management. Grizzly Ciderworks is the first hard cidery to open in Woodinville and just the third hard cidery in the greater Puget Sound region. Energetic, young, enterprising entrepreneurs Andy Petek and Corey Haugen made an educated decision in choosing Woodinville’s Warehouse District as its headquarters for Grizzly Ciderworks, the latest entry in the adult beverage market in the Puget Sound area.

Grizzly is the brainchild of Haugen — who turned his passion for perfecting hard cider brewing into a business opportunity –— and his friend Petek, who brought his background in alcohol sales, marketing and brand management to the mix.

Coupled with both of them having the desire to become  entrepreneurs, the partnership became the perfect blend of collaboration to start Grizzly Ciderworks when the two agreed to turn a dream into reality in 2012. A silent co-founder rounds out the team at Grizzly.

Grizzly Ciderworks is just the third craft hard cidery in the region to open, considering there are over 30 craft hard cider producers in operation in the Portland area. Nationally, sales of U.S. hard cider have tripled in the five-year period between 2007 and 2012 to $600 million according to a June 3, 2013, post on the website Brewbound.

Woodinville was the perfect fit because of its established reputation as a destination for premier quality wineries, breweries, distilleries and now a cidery.

Historically, hard cider was the most popular beverage in the U.S. until Prohibition, according to Petek. It’s taken years for a resurgence in the drink’s popularity to occur. Locally, Seattle Cider Company, based in Seattle’s Industrial District, was the first operating cidery within the city since Prohibition when they opened their doors in late August.

Since its inception, Grizzly has set its sights on bridging the gap between beer and cider. With an abundance of sweet ciders on the market, Grizzly set out to expand cider’s reach by introducing beer drinkers to the world of dry cider.

"At Grizzly, dry-hopped cider is our thing," says Petek, adding, "We didn’t seek out a niche to make a differentiating statement, but rather explored what we could do to continue growing the cider-drinking community. We don’t want to battle with our neighbors in the   cider business who we have so much respect and admiration for. Rather than producing products similar to the existing and successful cider companies, competing in a ‘Coke vs. Pepsi’ type arena for the same consumer, we looked at how to bring in a new group of consumers."  

Grizzly wants to be known for its specialty Dry-Hopped Ciders (DHC’s), which contain apples from the Skagit Valley, Yakima and Wenatchee along with hops and other ingredients sourced from the Northwest.

The apples are crushed and juiced, then fermented with yeast for a couple of weeks until the yeast has consumed virtually all the natural sugars in the juice, making it completely dry, explains Haugen.

He then finishes each cider by adding some special ingredients to create a unique flavor blend.

The resulting beverages are aimed at beer drinkers who are looking for a new twist on old tastes, cider drinkers who are looking for a full-bodied step-up in the market, along with drinkers who are sensitive to glutens, as hard cider is gluten-free.

Grizzly’s three founders, including the company’s cidermaker, Corey Haugen, all hail from the Pacific Northwest. "We’re really proud to be a part of the craft cider movement," said Haugen. "With so many great ciders on the market today, we’re hoping to gain traction with cider and beer drinkers who want to try something a bit different. People who’ve never tried cider don’t quite know what to expect. We go ahead and tell them to set their preconceived notions aside. So far, our feedback’s been overwhelming and folks are really excited for Grizzly to hit the taps. We think we’ll make a lot of conversions to the brand," he said.

Yes, indeed. Set your preconceived notions aside like my husband and I did on a recent test tasting. My husband, an avid beer drinker was sure he wouldn’t enjoy any of Grizzly’s offerings, while I, with an avid aversion to beer, was doubtful I’d enjoy something made using hops. We were both surprisingly wrong, and quickly became the newest fans of Grizzly Ciderworks hard ciders. Endowed with the nation’s largest supply of apples and hops, Washington state is an epicenter of the nation’s growing cider movement.

"The world is rediscovering cider, and the Pacific Northwest has established itself as one of America’s leading cider regions. We are excited to welcome Grizzly Ciderworks as the newest member of our Northwest cidermaking family," said David White, president of the Northwest Cider Association and co-owner of Olympia-based Whitewood Cider Company.

Grizzly’s path to craft took an interesting turn earlier this year when it crossed paths with Vessel Wines, a Northwest producer of kegged wines, which shares the same commitment to local sourcing and production. A unique partnership was born, with the two sharing resources to target new markets. Thanks to Vessel’s state-of-the-art kegging equipment, Grizzly plans to be on tap in bars and restaurants across the Seattle metro area within a few weeks. They have plans to hit retail markets early next year.

Grizzly and Vessel’s shared facilities are located at 19405 144th Ave. NE in Building D, which fronts 144th. They include a tank room and mezzanine taproom, both of which are frequently filled with interesting people, music and other live events. Grizzly is poured nightly in the taproom usually from Thursday through Saturday, unless a private event is scheduled.

The company has three varieties in its Founders’ Series available before year-end: The Ridge, its original dry and crisp cider and The Bruin, a dark and dry hopped cider, are already available in the Vessel Taproom. Meanwhile, the Hopclaw, a triple-hopped cider beaming with citrus and aroma hops will debut on December 12 at a special release party at Capitol Cider, located on Seattle’s Capitol Hill. The Bruin and The Ridge are also offered at Capitol Cider leading up the release party in December.

RazzBear, a dry-hopped cider based on a Northwest raspberry purée, will make its debut next spring. For more information, including the taproom’s weekly schedule of the days and hours of operation, visit

Gardeners can help fix bee decline by selling extra bees

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman, Staff Writer

You might have heard the bad news about bees. About one third of honey bee colonies died off last winter, according to a study by the Bee Informed Partnership. A report by the USDA and EPA says the trend of honey bee disappearance began in 2006, and the shortage is affecting crop production, since crops are normally pollinated by honey bees.

Dave Hunter, the owner of Woodinville-based Crown Bees, has a solution.

He sells gentle mason bees, which can be 100 times more effective at pollinating than honey bees.

When a mason bee approaches a flower, "she bellyflops in there and gets covered with pollen," Hunter said. As she flies from flower to flower, dropping pollen, "virtually every flower she touches is pollinated."

Another perk: mason bees almost never sting. Honey bees — like bumble bees, wasps and hornets — are social bees, which means they live in a hive and protect the queen bee. But mason bees are solitary bees, which means that every female is the queen of her own hive, and the bees don’t have to sting to protect each other.Hunter emphasized that he’s not trying to replace the honey bee; he just wants to offer an alternative.

Most recently, he started a bee buyback program, which lets gardeners donate their extra bee cocoons, sell them, or trade them in for beekeeping supplies. "A backyard typically needs 150 to 200 cocoons, max," Hunter said. "A lot of the people around here in Woodinville, Bothell, they have a boatload more than that."

He said it’s easy to harvest dormant mason bee cocoons, which are brown or tan and roughly raisin-sized, in the fall and winter. Mailing instructions and a form to sell or exchange the bees can be found at

After gardeners sell or trade their cocoons to Crown Bees for about $0.25 per cocoon,

Crown Bees sells them to regional orchards and nurseries such as Molbak’s.

Joanne Horn, a member of the Woodinville Garden Club, was among the first volunteers that Hunter enlisted to help raise mason bees. She and other gardeners pick up mason bees from Hunter in March and let the bees pollinate their plants for several months, then Hunter collects them again in June, Horn said.

"For me, it just increases the pollination that goes on," said Horn, who has an orchard, raspberries, blueberries, grapes, shrubs and flowers. "I’ve had an amazing amount of fruit production in the past few years since I’ve been using mason bees."

Penn Bell, another Woodinville gardener, has borrowed mason bees from Hunter for the past three years to use in her orchard and her vegetable garden.

"I used to keep honey bees [when I lived] in a different state," Bell explained. "Honey bees, right now, isn’t something I would want to take the time to do, but mason bees are quite easy to keep."

"The honey bee is a wonderful, wonderful bee, but we’re putting a lot of pressure on it," Hunter explained. Over-managing the honey bee is causing diseases, but he thinks part of the "bee scare" is just "marketing hype."

Hunter founded Crown Bees, now the world’s largest bee company, in 2008, but bees have been his "backyard hobby" for almost 20 years. After talking to scientists and farmers, he realized he could turn his hobby into an industry. He helped start the Orchard Bee Association and is working with the USDA to find native bees to augment the honey bee.

Using mason bees is also environmentally friendly, he said, because people usually use fewer chemicals with mason bees.

"If you want to be a good bee steward, plant one native plant. Grow one piece of food.

Throw away one chemical. Try raising solitary bees," he advised.

Woodinville man makes WWII movie with a positive message

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman, News Writer

Brad Cullen  Brad Vancour 2Courtesy Photo. Producer and actor Brad Cullen (left) and Brad Vancour, executive producer.There are plenty of gory, glorified war movies, but those types of films don’t appeal to Brad Vancour.

Vancour, a Woodinville real estate broker, is the executive producer for "The Last Rescue," a movie that focuses on the psychological and moral complexities of war rather than gratuitous violence.

The film is set in France during World War II.

"This war film is not your typical blood-and-guts, D-Day-type movie where everyone is getting blown up," Vancour wrote in an email from Alabama, where he’s supervising the production of the movie. "We wrote this film to show more of the humanity side of what war does to soldiers and what goes through [the] minds of soldiers when they have to kill and after they have killed."

Although he doesn’t want to give away the ending of the movie, he said the film has a "positive message." For example, the characters have to decide whether it’s right to kill someone, even though that person is their enemy.

Vancour got involved  in "The Last Rescue" when Hallie Shepherd, the co-writer of the film and an actor and producer, and Eric Colley, the director and producer, gave him a copy of the script at an event for investors.

"When I read it, it was pretty much exactly what I had in mind doing over the years, and [I] really liked their business model of writing scripts that don’t cost a fortune to film and have a good message," Vancour recalled.

The film’s cast and producers have strong ties to Washington. Shepherd and Colley (who are engaged) live in Tacoma. Seattle actor Tony Doupe plays the highest-ranking German officer in the movie.

"The Last Rescue" isn’t Vancour’s first foray into the film industry. In the 1980s and 1990s, he traveled the world as a lead skier for Warren Miller films. Since the crews were usually small, he helped with production — filming, sound and setting up shots — as well as skiing in the movies.

"Each year there were ski associates of mine in the extreme ski world that would have a bad accident and die and I knew it was just a matter of time before that would happen to me also," Vancour wrote of his decision to stop skiing. "But mostly, I was just burnt out of people telling me I was a good skier and I wanted to accomplish other things in business since I had a degree in economics, but I knew I would eventually get back in films but on the executive production side which really excited me. I found creating films more exciting than being in front of the camera, which doesn’t come natural to me."

Real estate has been his main income for the past 25 years, Vancour said. After working in commercial real estate, real estate development and residential real estate, he will now be one of the founding brokers of a new Kirkland office of Sotheby’s International Realty.

"The Last Rescue" will be released in mid-2014, and it’s already scheduled for international distribution. Vancour also hopes to show it at independent film festivals like the Sundance Film Festival.

"There’s very few films out of Washington that make the limelight, and I think this one will," Vancour said.

Building a dream, one hip-hop song at a time

  • Written by Shannon Michael Features Writer

Miller HallCourtesy photo . Hip hop artist, Konscious, whose real name is Kevin Miller, grew up in Bothell and Woodinville. He is a 2012 graduate of Bothell High School and is currently attending Western Washington University in Bellingham when not working on his music and performing. He just released his debut EP Music with a Konscious.At Bothell High he was known as Kevin Miller. Born and raised in the Bothell and Woodinville area, he graduated from BHS in 2012. Now he’s 19-years-old, with a big dream to fulfill as a hip-hop recording artist with the name Konscious.

When not studying economics at Western Washington University, Miller spends almost every spare moment working on his music from writing and producing to performing.

That hard work is beginning to pay off with increased downloads of his songs, and over 30,000 plays of his songs on SoundCloud.

Music with a Konscious, his debut EP (Extended Project to those not up on music lingo), featuring six new songs including "College Girls Anthem," his most popular song to date, was released on November 1.

Miller wrote "College Girls Anthem" two years ago, but this past summer when he finally decided to make music his number one priority, local success began to happen. Since finally releasing the song in September, it now has over 12,500 downloads on SoundCloud. He credits building a strong foundation of support around him, including mentors such as Everett-based hip-hop artist and producer J-Key, as the key to helping take his career to the next level.

He is now in the process of making a music video for "College Girls Anthem," working with fellow WWU students Connor Jalbert, Caleb Albright, and Madison Krueger who will be directing and filming the video.

Miller has come a long way since starting to show an interest in music when he was in grade school. His mother, Fernell Miller, an elementary school teacher in Kenmore, has supported him from the beginning, as have his brother Cam and sister Korrie.

"She has never doubted me. She has supported me ever since I started making music when I was 11 years old," Miller wrote about his mom in an email interview, adding that she attends business meetings and advises him when needed.  

For Miller, music was his salvation. He was bullied throughout grade school, and in junior high and high school he struggled with depression and suicidal behavior.

Music was his outlet. "Music became my life," he wrote. Because of those experiences, Miller just founded the Konscious Movement in October. 

"I woke up one day and asked myself why do I really make music? My answer sparked the creation of the Konscious Movement," he wrote.  His goal is to donate $200 from his CD sales towards community outreach advocating for anti-bullying this next year. He’s also included a "Giving Back" page on his official website so fans can contribute, too.

The Konscious Movement, along with his stage name Konscious, is a deliberate message to his fans to live consciously, in the moment. "To live Konscious is to live happy and not ashamed to be yourself," Miller wrote, adding that the goal is to educate and uplift youth through hip-hop music. The "K" in Konscious is for his first name Kevin.

Miller’s style of hip-hop is reflective of those he admires in the industry who have the ability to create melodic hip-hop like 50-Cent, Kanye West, and Lil Wayne. "I aspire to make hits as enjoyable as theirs," he wrote.

Miller’s Music with a Konscious is available online through his Bandcamp store, and at his shows. The next performance by Konscious will be at Seattle’s premier 18+ night club Fusion Ultra Lounge in Seattle on November 8th.

He’ll also be performing in Hip-Hop Mania featuring several artists at Studio Seven in Seattle on November 17th. Tickets are $10 in advance on his website and $15 at the door. To purchase tickets, find more information on upcoming performances, and for links to buy his music on his Bandcamp store page and SoundCloud page, visit his website

Preparing your horse property for winter

  • Written by Alayne Blickle, Program Director, Horses for Clean Water

remove from pastureEvery winter there always seems to be at least a few storms that wreak havoc on our normal routine.

For horse owners this usually means slogging through mud to do chores with less time to ride.

As it is with most everything, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. 

Making your horse property as chore-efficient as possible now will help ease you through the upcoming winter months when you least want to deal with winter’s little (and big) surprises.

Here are just a few tips to prepare for winter. To learn more, plan to attend a Winter Horse Care workshop on November 10 at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds (see the details at the end of this article).

Buy your winter supply of hay.

Look for green, leafy, fresh-smelling hay without mold, weeds, dust or discoloration.

Recent nutritional recommendations are for a horse to receive two percent of its body weight in hay (or forage) per day.

For the "average" 1000 pound horse with moderate exercise, that will be about 20 pounds of hay per day or about 600 pounds of hay per month.

Since hay is usually sold by the ton (2,000 pounds), one ton of hay will last about three and 1/3 months per average-sized horse.

Do the math to determine how many tons of hay you’ll need for the winter.

Pick up manure.

If you don’t already pick up manure every one to three days, now is the time to start doing so. A horse creates 50 pounds of manure per day.

When mixed with rainwater over the winter months this quickly turns to 50 pounds of mud per day.

Picking up manure on a regular basis will greatly decrease that amount of mud on your farm — and it will reduce your horse’s parasite load.

Spread compost.

Early fall is a great time to put compost on pastures. It adds micro and macronutrients and replenishes beneficial bacteria which improve the health of soil and plants. Spread a thin sprinkling, no more than a ½ inch thick and no more than three to four inches per season in the same place.

Check gutters and downspouts.

Now is the time to clean and make needed repairs or additions to your roof runoff system.

Diverting rainwater away from your paddocks and other high-traffic areas will dramatically reduce the amount of mud you and your horse have to deal with.

Bring your horses in off your pastures. If you’re lucky enough to have pasture, now is the time to baby your grass.

Pastures that are grazed too closely in fall will be subject to winter damage and be slow to start growing in the spring. It’s best if you allow the grass to produce at least four inches of leaf growth before winter when plants go dormant and stop growing.  You’ll see the payoff next spring. 

Review your lighting needs.

Do you have adequate outdoor lighting? Are your stalls bright enough to care for horses during dark winter evenings?

When you’re feeding at night, will you have enough light to see if the hay you’re feeding is green or moldy?

Would you be better able to do manure pick-up chores in paddocks with flood lighting? Have you been meaning to put in lighting along walkways or drives?

Get that work done now instead of waiting until temperatures are freezing and you’re feeding by flashlight.

To learn more ways to get ready for the pending winter, join Horses for Clean Water and Snohomish Conservation District for a Winter Horse Care workshop.

Learn what you can do this winter to keep your horses healthy, reduce mud, manage manure and lay the groundwork for green pastures next spring!

You’ll also get tips on how to care for older horses that have a harder time during cold months.

The workshop will run from 1 to 4 p.m. on November 10 at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds Longhouse in Monroe. 

Register online at: