The vision has been brewing for years, and now it’s finally becoming a reality.
If the timeline holds, the Yakima Valley’s newest brewery and restaurant, The Outskirts, will be opening its doors in Selah this fall, hoping to add some variety and historical flair to the local business community.
“This project has been a few years in the making, but now we’re all systems go,” said Cody Beebe, a native of Selah and one of the business’s five co-owners.
What’s nice about the location, Beebe notes, is that “it’s on the outskirts of Selah and the outskirts of Yakima, but it’s also in the middle of everything.” The owners hope their proximity to every major driving route — U.S. Highway 12 and 97, Interstate 82, State Route 823 — will be a draw for customers from Ellensburg to the Lower Valley.
“The location is what really got me interested,” Beebe said. “But, for me, it was also that entrepreneurial spirit of casting a vision and bringing something new to life. We all have tons of small business experience and we each bring a different skill set to the table. Plus, we’re all old friends, which makes the whole thing even better.”
The ownership team — which also includes Joe Catron, Chase Webster, Josh Johnson and Patrick Gasseling — broke ground in May on the three-acre lot on SR 823 commonly referred to as “the red barn.” The property, just past the turnoff to Golf Course Road, features a century-old red barn and workshop that will be incorporated into the redesign.
“We have spent a lot of time with engineers and architects to rebuild the barn while still saving the original structure,” Beebe said. “It would have been easier — and cheaper — to just knock it down and rebuild. But we could never replicate the look and the historical feel of the original.”
The barn will be home to the full-service restaurant and bar, while the shop and adjoining indoor space will house the 10-barrel brewing system and taproom. Construction crews from Stephens & Sons are currently connecting the barn to the shop, creating a continuous 6,200-square-foot facility. The rest of the grounds will be used for live music, events and other social gatherings.
“We’re trying to do things a little differently,” said Beebe, a longtime local musician who also owns Chinook Entertainment. “We’re really trying to focus on the community and the surrounding areas so we can become a place where people want to congregate. Our goal is to create an entirely new experience for people here in the Valley.”
Four of the five owners grew up in Selah (Gasseling is from Wapato) and they have been talking for years about starting a business like The Outskirts. The idea continued to gain traction in 2019 when the group negotiated the purchase of the red barn property.
They annexed the property into the city of Selah in early 2020 and were planning to move forward immediately, but then the pandemic hit and the owners had to put their plans on the backburner. At the same time, the unexpected pause gave them time to refine their ideas and develop a better gameplan.
“It was probably a blessing in disguise,” Beebe conceded. “The shutdown allowed us to pivot some of our ideas and introduce some new elements like the restaurant. We also decided to put in two big glass doors on the barn for better airflow and build a big fireplace inside the barn.
“The taproom is also going be quite a bit different than our original plan,” he added. “We’re trying to create an old hunting lodge feel — like a step back in time. We want people to walk in and feel that nostalgia.”
Construction of The Outskirts will continue all summer, with an “ambitious” goal of opening this fall. Catron is using his brewing background and hops expertise to develop the beer varieties, and the team will eventually hire a full-time brewmaster.
Johnson will help get the restaurant up to speed, and another Selah native, chef Calvin Elliott, will lend his expertise, eventually splitting time between The Outskirts and Whistlin’ Jack’s (where Johnson is a part-owner). The lodge’s general manager, Bailey Hempstead, also will be involved on the restaurant side.
Catron is an experimental brewer with Yakima Chief Hops and Gasseling owns a hop farm, giving them a unique perspective on the agricultural aspect of brewing. Webster owns Northwest Asphalt and will manage the paving and oversee construction.
Meanwhile, Beebe will manage the marketing, branding and video promotion for the business. He said the entire team is looking forward to introducing themselves to the Yakima Valley brewing scene.
“We’re trying to be a little different,” he said. “Not because anyone else is doing it better or worse. We just want to create a unique experience for the Valley and collaborate with other local brewers and become part of that culture. We believe in the idea that the tide raises all boats — when breweries and restaurants in the area do well, everyone does well.”