Crafting Beer and Building Community in Renton
Today, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Frank Castro and Shaunn Siekawitch, the passionate owners of Bickersons Brewhouse. Join me as we dive into their journey of turning their love for brewing into a thriving local business right here in the Renton Highlands.
In 2017, shortly after moving to the Highlands, Frank Castro found himself facing a life-altering challenge: a cancer diagnosis. To cope with the difficult times and distract himself from the treatment process, Frank sought solace in a new hobby – homebrewing. Guided by a friend's expertise, he started brewing beer and honing his skills. Shaunn Siekawitch, Frank's partner, fondly remembers carboys fermenting in unexpected corners of their home as they embarked on this beer-making adventure.
As Frank's brewing improved, they realized they had stumbled upon something remarkable. Combining Frank's background in analytics with the invaluable advice from industry insiders, they saw the potential to transform their passion into a business. The pivotal moment came when a former Starbucks location, conveniently situated across the street from their home, became available for lease. Seizing the opportunity, they submitted a bid and embarked on a 14-month journey to bring Bickersons Brewhouse to life.
The name "Bickersons" may evoke curiosity, and rightfully so. Frank and Shaunn's witty banter as a couple inspired the name, reflecting their playfully spirited dynamic. It's an endearing way of embracing their occasional bickering and inviting customers to enjoy their craft beer while soaking in the friendly atmosphere. As you spend time at the brewhouse, you'll undoubtedly witness their light-hearted exchanges and feel like part of their extended family.
With a commitment to continuous improvement, Frank acknowledges that perfection is an elusive goal. While some beers come close to his standards, he always finds room for enhancement. Valuing customer feedback, Frank and Shaunn remain receptive to their patrons' preferences. The brewing community has been a source of invaluable support and guidance, fostering an environment where brewers readily share their knowledge and collaborate.
When asked whether brewing beer helped him through his cancer journey, Frank shared that it provided him with a sense of purpose and a much-needed distraction. While going through treatment, brewing became an outlet for his energy and creativity. Frank's dedication to the craft extended beyond his day job, allowing him to focus on the fermentation and brewing processes during evenings and weekends. As the quality of their beers improved, so did Frank's determination to refine and experiment further.
The Renton community has been instrumental in the success of Bickersons Brewhouse. From the very beginning, locals rallied behind this new brewery in the Highlands. Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the community stood by them, recognizing the importance of supporting a local establishment. Bickersons Brewhouse has become a beloved gathering spot where neighbors can enjoy good beer, warm company, and the vibrant atmosphere of their community.
Bickersons Brewhouse goes beyond serving delicious craft beer. They actively engage with the community through events and partnerships. Every Thursday, they host trivia nights, providing a fun and interactive experience for customers. They have also formed a partnership with local food vendors, allowing customers to pair their favorite brews with delectable dishes from neighboring businesses. This collaboration not only supports local entrepreneurs but also enhances the overall experience for visitors to Bickersons Brewhouse.
Furthermore, Frank and Shaunn are dedicated to giving back to the community that has embraced their business.
Bickersons Brewhouse is more than just a brewpub; it's a testament to the power of passion, perseverance, and community support. Frank and Shaunn's journey, born out of a hobby and nurtured by resilience, has resulted in a beloved establishment that brings people together, one sip at a time. So, whether you're a beer enthusiast, a supporter of local businesses, or simply seeking a warm and friendly spot to relax, Bickersons Brewhouse welcomes you with open arms and a frosty pint.
If you find yourself in Renton, don't miss the opportunity to visit Bickersons Brewhouse and experience the magic for yourself. Cheers to good beer and the indomitable spirit of the Renton community!
Check out their social media for more information!