Looking back and updating some 2013 stories

  • Written by Shannon Michael, Features Writer

Sometimes you read (or in my case, write) a story and wonder later if there’s anything new that’s happened since the story was published. Here’s a look back at some of the stories we brought to you in 2013 with updates:

My first assigned story when I began as features writer for The Woodinville Weekly in April was about Woodinville native Laura Pyles, a pastry chef at Seattle’s Joule and Revel, who was garnering national attention after being named Food & Wine magazine’s People’s Choice Best New Pastry Chef on the West Coast.

Since then, Pyles left Joule/Revel in October and partnered with Josh Henderson (known for Skillet, Westward and Hollywood Tavern) to open up a new bakery café in Sodo next year. "The spot will be called Parchment and will specialize in sandwiches built on hearty breads, unique pastries, local beer and wine, and seasonally inspired dishes," Pyles wrote in an email.

"The breads will be handmade and will showcase spent grains from nearby breweries. We will be open for breakfast and lunch along with an evening happy hour during the week along with brunch and lunch on the weekend," she added.

Parchment will be located just south of the Starbucks corporate headquarters. Pyles will be the executive chef when it opens.

Pipers Creek Nursery owner Alan Hensley enjoyed new fans to his plant nursery that specializes in Northwest native plants after the story ran in May. This fall, he chose to relocate the nursery to 7324 NE 175th Street in Kenmore where he hopes to be open by mid-February.

The nursery will be in a smaller retail space, and Hensley is teaming with 192 Brewing and The Lake Trail Taproom to create "The Beer Garden" with planted containers and display gardens this spring. "Washington beers and NW native plants. A natural combination, local beers, local plants and a good time," Hensley wrote in an email.

It was tragic news when the community learned a young father, John Norman, was killed in a construction accident on May 11. What made his story heartbreaking was learning he left behind a toddler daughter, Cadence, and his wife, Breanna, who was pregnant with their second daughter. He’d been hard at work using every spare moment building their dream home on a lot next to his parent’s house in Woodinville.

KIRO Radio’s Ron & Don Show asked the community if they could come together to help finish the family’s home by Father’s Day.

"There were so many people who came forward, and so many small businesses that gave us everything we needed, and more," family friend and donation coordinator Mike Barter said recently.

Because of issues in getting a septic tank system permitted, installed and approved, Breanna and her two daughters – Abigail was born in September – finally moved into the home on December 15. "Just in time for Christmas!" Barter said.

The community’s heartwarming generosity allowed Breanna and her family to move into a home, not just a house. Barter gives much of the credit to Ron & Don Show producer Libby Denkmann. "Libby was an angel. She wouldn’t let the story die."

Kid chef and Woodinville resident Amber Kelley had a great year after her recipe was selected to represent the state of Washington for First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move initiative. She attended a luncheon at the White House where she discovered she would be sitting next to Mrs. Obama during the luncheon in July.

Then, she found out she was a finalist in a contest to become the next Food Tube star on celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s YouTube channel.

Since the Jamie Oliver contest, Amber has been invited by Oliver to become part of the Food Tube family. Oliver helps promotes her videos, which helps her videos to be seen by a larger audience. She now has over 50,000 views on YouTube, according to her mom, Yohko Kelley.

The young chef also went on a family trip to Japan for two weeks, where they did some filming. They are producing a series of videos called "Amber in Japan" on YouTube. The first episode, titled, "My Favorite Foods" is online.

For more information on Amber’s upcoming events and activities, visit her website

By far, the best part of my job as features writer for the Weekly has been meeting and interviewing fascinating people. Ron Alessandrini and Mike Osterling fit that bill when I visited their home and toured their garden, both of which are garnering national attention, in August.

Since the story ran, freelance writers for Sunset and Better Homes & Gardens magazines have submitted stories for publication consideration, a vintage clothing club hosted a party with 50 guests dressed in period attire in October, they are already planning their annual summer garden party in July, and will be hosting a large wedding in their garden next August.

In July, Twisted Café owner Julio Ortiz, at the urging of his customers, started serving Cuban fare for dinner, which gave Northshore diners another cuisine option when dining out. The response has been so favorable that Ortiz officially changed the name of the restaurant to the Twisted Cuban Café & Bar in early December.

Now, the restaurant offers a full Cuban menu for lunch and dinner. They are keeping a few of their old deli sandwiches on the lunch menu, including the Twisted Cuban and Monster sandwiches. The restaurant has also switched to a full-service dining experience including full bar service at both lunch and dinner.

Their new hours are Monday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to midnight.

In August, construction was in full progress at the iconic Hollywood Tavern across from Columbia Winery. In addition to the tavern receiving a reincarnation, a new headquarters for Woodinville Whiskey was being built adjacent to the tavern.

Since then, the tavern opened on November 12 and is open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. serving a modern twist on classic pub fare, paired with cocktails using Woodinville Whiskey’s product, and a few of the classically cheap beers the tavern was known for in its heyday.

Meanwhile, Woodinville Whiskey’s new distillery is now slated to open in February.

We learned in October Starbucks’ Evenings Program was coming to their Woodinville store on NE 175th Street. On December 6, over 100 people attended the grand opening.

"Many customers are enjoying the wine and food offerings together, and popular pairings include the Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling with the Truffle Macaroni & Cheese or the Amavi Cellars Syrah with the Chocolate Fondue," a Starbucks spokesperson wrote in an email.

After January 1, they will begin a regular calendar of events, ranging from partnerships with local Woodinville wineries and book clubs, to the Knitting Night they have in the works for the end of January. "Any community members interested in partnering for an event can simply stop in and ask for the store manager, Holly, or reach out to the store over the phone (425) 398-8099," the spokesperson wrote.

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