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About The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current | View Entire Issue (July 11, 2019)
12 // COASTWEEKEND.COM
Chefs, restaurants, reviews, recipes,
culinary events & foodie features
By RYAN HUME
FOR COAST WEEKEND
A few months back, when visiting Dwayne Small-
wood’s excellent Bridge & Tunnel bottle and pour shop,
I proposed the term “Duane Street Pentagon” to displace
the “Duane Street Triangle” nomenclature that was being
banded about to discuss the amount of good drink you
could find within a two block radius in downtown Astoria.
Sure, it’s a triangular block, but there’s more than three
ways to whet your whistle in this neighborhood of brew-
eries, ciderhouses and distilleries. Google already knows
this. Yelp too. Though, with the opening of Blaylock’s
Whiskey Bar on 13th St., I finally have to admit that I’m
just dead wrong.
Sprung from the bones of the former Columbia Travel
agency, Blaylock’s has turned this nexus into the “Duane
Street Hexagon.” Pollinating off the crowds at Fort
George, I would be surprised if this area doesn’t at least
end up an octagon at some point.
Speaking of surprise, it’s always interesting to walk
into a new place and encounter an old face. Cory Teubner,
the multi Coast Weekend Reader’s Choice-award-winning
bartender at Astoria Coffeehouse and Bistro, is now cock-
tail manager at Blaylock’s.
To Teubner, this is a change. Going from the food-cen-
tric Coffeehouse, which appreciated cocktails that were
“liquor second,” “fresh ingredients first,” to straight pours
of barreled, sometimes historical, booze that boast charac-
ter on their own.
He oversees a five-tier whiskey wall with an old-school
library ladder. Things are quartered and quarantined and
compartmentalized around region—Irish, Scotch, bour-
bon, Japanese…, but if Teubner has to get up on that lad-
der, things will get expensive.
If I ever decide to go broke in Astoria, it will be in front
of that wall. This is well-curated by co-owner Seth How-
ard, who along with partner Michael Angiletta, has put
together an obsessive collection of bottles, ranging from
the known and necessary to the rare.
I had never before heard of Jefferson’s Ocean Aged at
Sea, which is a Kentucky bourbon barreled on a boat that
swings across the equator four or five times, from Antarc-
tica to elsewhere, experiencing severe weather that allows
the barrels to swell and release. It’s this kind of magical
thinking that allows for a $22 price tag on a two ounce
“We have 104 bottles now,” Howard said. “We hope to
have 300 by the end of the year.”
A Rob Roy at Blaylock’s Whiskey Bar in Astoria. Cocktail manger Cory Teubner shakes a drink.
The cocktail list is divided between New World and
Old World cocktails, complete with pre-Prohibition whis-
key sours properly served up frothy with an egg white.
(And yes, there are other liquors in the cocktails for the
Blaylock’s has a number of three-pour flights based on
region, with the Oregon flight of Burnside Bourbon, Ran-
som’s Whippersnapper Whiskey and Bull Run’s Single
Malt being the most popular, Howard said.
They also offer a dangerous proposal: the whiskey
passport, where as you imbibe through an entire region in
their collection, you are offered a reward.
Seated in a handsome leather chair at a spruce bar har-
vested from Warrenton (all of the woodwork is from a sin-
gle tree), I steered towards the Old World menu. Perhaps
it was the toothy, smiling saw on the wall, the ladder, the
fireplace or taxidermy, but classic seemed the way to go.
A Rob Roy is essentially a Manhattan made with
Scotch. Not to be confused with a Roy Rogers, which is a
virgin drink named after the American cowboy, this one’s
named after the Scottish outlaw. Blaylock’s is exceptional
because of the Cocchi, a floral almost spicy vermouth
from Torino, Italy, which adds depth to the cocktail. This
isn’t the kind of vermouth you just use to rinse a glass.
Whatever vermouth you pour will really change the char-
acter of the beverage.
Though open less than a month at the time of this visit,
I look forward to spending many soggy evenings at Blay-
lock’s Whiskey Bar near the refuge of their fireplace. CW
3 ounces Johnnie Walker Red Label, or preferred Scotch
1 ounce Cocchi, or preferred sweet vermouth
A few dashes bitters
Amarena Toschi cherries for garnish
Add all the ingredients except the cherry to a cocktail shaker
filled with ice. Shake it up, then strain into a cocktail glass. Enjoy
and fall back in time with this beverage created in 1894.
—Recipe courtesy Cory Teubner, bar manager of Blaylock’s Whis-
key Bar in Astoria.