Erica Marquez/Special to the S.F. examinerBroken Record bartender Brett Davis can help you pick out a top shot of whiskey

Erica Marquez/Special to the S.F. examinerBroken Record bartender Brett Davis can help you pick out a top shot of whiskey

Broken Record bartender will help you mine the vast whiskey offerings

Some of the dart champion pseudonyms commemorated on the plaques in Broken Record are so problematic that they should come with trigger warnings. Sitting about halfway between City College of San Francisco and Daly City's Bayshore neighborhood, this Geneva Avenue watering hole occupies a corner of San Francisco that appears on no postcards and is mentioned in few tourist guides. The wall paintings of buxom women look like they came off the sides of World War II warplanes, and a local photographer's works are on display featuring subjects such as a pit bull lounging on the hood of a Cadillac El Dorado. Originally from Portland, Ore., bartender Brett Davis has lived in the Bay Area since 2005. Before coming to Broken Record, he worked as a music analyst for a now-defunct startup that was similar to Pandora.

How did you wind up working at Broken Record? I was walking down Polk Street and I got a call from a friend saying I could have a bar-back job if I wanted it, but I would have to start immediately. I hung up and went over there. This meant bailing on my friend's birthday. She forgave me.

Crocker Amazon is a neighborhood you don't hear about much. What's it like tending bar there? I love this area. The neighborhood is amazing. There are not a lot of jerks. Our crowd is a pretty solid cross-section of people — tons of regulars, neighborhood folks that drink Coors Light and shots. Genuine blue-collar workers mixing with the young and trendy. And, of course, people looking for whiskey.

Are you known for your whiskey selection? Yes, we have an outstanding Scotch selection, over 150 of them. My favorite thing is to try and figure out what these obscure whiskeys are all about. There's so much variation, it's awesome. We also have an Irish whiskey from 1951, Knappogue Castle, that's $150 a shot. And, of course, we have Jameson's on tap.

Wait, what? Jameson's Irish Whiskey? On tap? How is that possible? We did it initially with CO2, but that resulted in carbonated whiskey, which was horrible, so we changed to, like, a SCUBA-diving tank of compressed air. We've got these little two-gallon kegs of Jameson's, and the whiskey gets aerated while it's pouring.

Wow! Is this generally served neat or on the rocks? I try to convince people not to drink it with ice. That makes it too cold, and you can't properly taste it.

How do you spend your time when you're not behind the bar? I play in a bunch of bands. One of them I just started with one of the other bartenders and two of our diehard family regulars. I play drums. It's kind of a sludgy, doom-metal kind of thing. Most of the things I do outside work are related to music and sleeping. I love sleeping!

Brett DavisBroken RecordFeaturesFood & DrinkFood and WineSan Francisco bars

Just Posted

Danielle Baskin, right, and friends hung a Halloween store banner on the sign of a mostly empty tech campus on Monday as a prank. (Photo courtesy Vincent Woo)
‘BOOgle!’ Pranksers wrap Google’s SF office park in ‘Spirit Halloween’ signage

The goof says it all about The City’s empty tech campuses

Alison Collins, a member of the San Francisco Unified School District Board of Education, listens during a board meeting. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Alison Collins speaks: Embattled SF school board member confronts the recall effort

‘It’s important for folks to know what this recall is about. It’s bigger than any one of us.’

Passengers board a BART train at Powell Street station on Friday, Oct. 23, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Powell Station death serves as a grim reminder. BART doors don’t stop for anyone

What you need to know about safety sensors on the trains

Is the Black Cat affair a distraction from the recovery of The City’s storied nightlife industry or does Mayor Breed’s behavior inadvertently highlight the predicament the industry’s been in since San Francisco reinstated indoor mask requirements on Aug. 20? (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner, 2021)
Mayor Breed mask controversy highlights nightlife businesses’ plight

‘It’s what all the venues and bars are living every single day’

If he secured a full term in the Senate, Newsom would become the most powerful Californian Democrat since Phil Burton at the height of his career, or maybe ever. <ins>(Kevin Hume/The Examiner)</ins>

Most Read