Five Questions for the Bartender: Bait Shop’s Jonah Bergman
"I'm always super bummed when places make the bartender dress up like he or she is working in a secret prohibition speakeasy."
This guy is so Pacific Northwest: long hair, black glasses, plaid shirt. Hell, he even toured with a band for seven years. So it makes sense that Bremerton-native Jonah Bergman has found a home with the Derschang empire. In the office, Bergman has worked his way up from operations assistant to creative director; on the floor, he worked as a server and barback at Linda’s Tavern before moving into his current (and first ever) bartending role at Bait Shop when it opened in 2012.
Here, five questions for Jonah.
What is everyone ordering at Bait Shop these days? I've been cranking out a ton of Manhattans and old fashioneds and I never get tired of it. They are two of my favorites. When Seahawks fever swept town and everyone started to want party shots, our seldom-used bottle of Blue Curacao got a nice workout.
What current cocktail trend is completely overrated? I feel like it is starting to die out, but I'm always super bummed when places make the bartender dress up like he or she is working in a secret prohibition speakeasy. I understand that some places have a more formal dress code than others, but one can certainly dress well and not seem like he or she has been forced to wear a costume.
What's the most underrated spirit? Four Roses Yellow bourbon. It is so reasonably priced and absolutely delicious.
What is the craziest thing you've ever seen happen in a bar? One time a professional whistler came up to the bar and asked if we could turn the music down for a moment so he could whistle a song for his girlfriend for her birthday. A professional whistler. Of course I obliged. While his whistle tone and range were astounding, his song went on for about five minutes too long and I had to follow his performance up with some Guns N' Roses "Patience" just to get the vibe back on track. The whistle vibe, that is.
If the bar and restaurant world suddenly disappeared, what would you do? I would start going to bed at regular hours.