We hit our initial funding goal and with lots of enthusiasm from folks, we're going to stretch the campaign and raise the bar to $35,000!
With only a few exceptions, all of our thank-you gifts are still available: t-shirts, tea towels, totes, koozies and baking classes! For all of the folks who still want to be a part of helping to open our doors this summer, there's still time and plenty of contribution options left!
Hope to see you in the bakery!
Kit & Jesse
Sea Wolf is the dream of two brothers: one a cook and one a baker, to create a special kind of bakery:
A place that is beautiful, comfortable, and welcoming to everyone who spends time there; whether they are employees or customers, whether they live in the neighborhood, or are visiting from out of town.
And a workplace that is an exploration of bread and baking.
We believe that bread should be beautiful and that beautiful bread is a reflection of the craftsmanship that created it. Our intent is to bring the creativity and diversity of the kitchen into the bakery and, like the best restaurants in Seattle, source regionally and work with local farmers to emphasize the grains and ingredients of the Northwest.
Finally, we want Sea Wolf to reflect our own experience of working for chefs and bakers who paid us a good living wage and encouraged our creativity. We expect that by giving our employees the opportunity to explore their interests, Sea Wolf will itself benefit from their success.
For the past two years, we've enjoyed developing relationships with restaurants and chefs around town, and we're happy to say that we really enjoy all of our wholesale customers. We feel like we belong to a community of good people doing good work.
Now, after two years of bouncing around town, we finally get to put down roots in another kind of community. We are really lucky to have found such a sweet home between the vibrant Wallingford and Fremont neighborhoods, and we look forward to getting to know our new neighbors.
Our goal is to open Sea Wolf as a resource for bread and pastry and as a place to learn about baking.
On the eating side of things, the bakery will offer an expanded range of breads for retail purchase as well as a brand-new line of pastries, centering on croissants and other laminated doughs and reflecting our special affection for savory pastry. As we settle into the space, we also look forward to pairing our breads with a rotating array of seasonal produce. Finally, we will offer simple brewed coffee sourced from a few of our favorite regional roasters and a modest array of beers and wines for afternoon quaffing.
On the learning side, we hope to pull back the curtain on baking. Sea Wolf will feature an open layout with the entire production process on display to visitors. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with the Book Larder to offer baking classes in the new space.
Our goal is to serve Seattle as a resource for exemplary baked goods and a place to enjoy baking as a community. We believe in the value of good neighbors, and it is in that spirit that we move forward.
Who We Are:
We are Kit and Jesse Schumann: bakers and brothers born and raised in the Nooksack Valley of Northwest Washington State. Sea Wolf is a labor of love and the realization of years of planning. It was conceived out of a discussion about how we could work together, own our own business, and build something new that represented the best of our combined experience.
After years of thinking and waiting, in 2014 Sea Wolf was born as a craft bakery. We initially baked out of the Boat Street Cafe in the wee hours of the morning and sold our bread to a handful of restaurants, including the Whale Wins and The Walrus and The Carpenter. Because we lacked the (expensive) equipment of a professional bakery, we improvised: we amassed a small arsenal of cast iron pans and baked our inaugural white sourdough using a method developed for home bakers.
Over the past couple years we've picked up some new customers, a few more cast iron pans, and added a couple new breads to our repertoire. We've also bounced around town between locations, always looking for more oven space.
But hauling a pile of cast iron pans in and out of ovens is, frankly, exhausting, and we've always wanted a place of our own where we can meet our customers, teach classes, and grow as bakers.
The place we've found to settle down and build our bakery is fantastic. We are setting up shop on Stone Way between the Fremont and Wallingford neighborhoods. We've got plans for a bright, airy space drawn up by the amazingly talented Heliotrope Architects, and the hard-working and honest folks at Metis Construction are currently in the midst of building it out.
Through the generosity and support of our family, we were able to finance a business loan with which we bought the oven we've always dreamed of. We've got a 30-year-old dough mixer we hauled up from Ashland in the back of an equally old pickup. We've got pretty much everything we need to expand our wholesale business.
But this is where you come in: we need your help to open Sea Wolf to the public. Every dollar we receive from this Kickstarter is a dollar we don’t have to borrow from a bank, and that means a lot to us. It means tables and chairs for our customers, a retail counter, coffee service, the smell of bread, and the sound of happy people. It means that when we have opened a bright and inviting space in a great neighborhood, we will be able to point to all it and say, “You helped us build this.” We are very excited.
Help us open our bakery! This is much-needed startup capital to help us grow from a fly-by-night wholesale business into a full-scale brick-and-mortar establishment offering coffee and pastries to our friends and neighbors. This Kickstarter is the key to opening the doors of Sea Wolf. Thank you.
What's in it for You?
Aside from helping to make all of our dreams come true, you will now have a new space to interact with your community, meet your neighbors, see friends or family, learn about baking, and fill your heart (and belly) with bread, pastries and coffee. We look forward to seeing you in the bakery.
Risks and challenges
The truth is that this is an exhilarating and terrifying project. For the past two years we've worked hard not only to bake the best bread we could for our customers, but to navigate the unfamiliar terrain of lease negotiations, building design and permitting, business taxes and accounting, and loan applications. We have baked through the night, only to come home to our dining room table to blearily fill out applications, reconcile accounts, and answer endless emails from the good people helping us put this bakery together.
We are so very lucky to have a supportive family that has encouraged us and helped us meet the financial thresholds necessary to acquire our SBA loan. They have followed us out onto a limb. They say that you have to spend money to make money, and we have certainly spent money: on an oven and a mixer and refrigeration; on architectural designs and city permits; on concrete cutting and plumbing and painting and wiring.
We want this bakery to be something special, and for that, we've worked harder and reached farther than we ever anticipated. There will certainly be challenges ahead: rent increases, food fads, rising ingredient costs, illness, injury, and ordinary dumb mistakes. Right now, however, to get to all of those challenges that every business owner confronts, we need to get this bakery built: to buy the necessary equipment; to pay for last-minute adjustments to meet city building code; to buy chairs and tables so that our customers have a welcoming place to sit and eat and talk and watch the baking.
The challenge of baking terrific bread is one that we accepted long ago. If we continue to be honest with ourselves, it's a life-long commitment: a satisfying task that begins anew each day. The challenge for this kickstarter is momentary: help us finish building so that we can start baking. Help us launch this bakery.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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