Photo from UrbanDaddy; by Michael David Rose Photography.
Opening quite a bit ahead of schedule, ~LOCAL EDITION~, the latest bar from the Destination Bars team (Brian Sheehy and Doug Dalton), is opening this Thursday. It’s located in the basement of the historic Hearst Building—some of you may remember The Manhattan Lounge from a while ago, the space’s last incarnation. It was the publishing floor for The Examiner and The Call, so you’ll see many elements like paper cutters, linotypes, historic newspapers, typewriters, and more. In fact, Dalton’s father and grandfather were both reporters, and papers with their bylines and their typewriters are both displayed. In coming months, more equipment from the archives will be revealed, like a Hearst projector that will play old Movietone newsreels. There’s a stage where you’ll also be able to listen to jazz ensembles and acoustic acts.
The space is huge—5,500 square feet—and has a seating area with room for over 100. There are banquettes, lounge chairs on rollers, and the low tables are topped with marble that was from the Hearst Castle; the bar is also made of the same marble—they found the remnants in the sub-basement and were given permission by Steve Hearst to use it (he’s been instrumental in the project). There are also high-top tables around the bar.
I spoke with Joe Alessandroni (GM, manager for Rickhouse) and Ian Scalzo (opening GM for Local Edition, GM at Bourbon & Branch, beverage director for Destination Bars) about the cocktail program, which will be inspired by mid-century (and spirit-driven) cocktails from the ’50s and ’60s. The 12 original cocktail names are based on events, people, and places of that era, with references to the newspaper business, like The Eagle (a reference to the Hearst logo) and Fidel and Che. In addition to Ian’s composed cocktails, there are “culinary highballs” (a spirit, syrup, and soda made from old-school siphons), and your table can order bottles of punch, like The Daily News, a variation on the Singapore sling with mezcal on the side. A twist on bottle service, there will also be decanter service, with a spirit served with a bucket of ice and soda.
For now, you can either make a reservation for 1 of 12 tables (you’ll be able to do so on the website), or feel free to just swing by (there are a lot of spots held for walk-ins). When it’s busy, you’ll check in with a host who will seat you when tables are available, and about 30 of the tables will have table service. Opening hours are Thu-Fri 5pm-2am, Sat 7pm-2am, and starting Monday, it will be open early-ish for happy hour (possibly 4pm) through Saturday until 2am (hours subject to change). 691 Market St. at 3rd St., 415-795-1375. (Look for the door next to the T-Mobile store.)