Located behind an unmarked wooden door on the second floor of a new building called White Plains West is a speakeasy-esque cocktail bar owned by veritable vinyl nerd and cocktail-drinker Jay Amante.
78-53-86 is a vinyl collector’s wet dream.
Amante tells us about his brother’s group back in the 80’s called Social Distortion, who provided music played on vinyl for parties and events, and how he would go to these parties as a young boy and enjoy the music. A turning point for Amante and his relationship with music was during EDSA Revolution in 1986. “Social Distortion rented a flatbed truck and parked it on the corner of EDSA and White Plains Avenue,” he narrates. ” . . . and played music for the people while trying to overthrow a dictatorship.” That is when he learned of the value of music, he says, and perhaps could be credited for bringing his interest in music to the realm of passion.
Their sound system is composed of “vintage Altec speakers, custom built by Harana Audio’s Joey Abad Santos, a pair of vintage Garrard 301s with vintage Fidelity Research arms and vintage Dynaco amplifiers, modified by Joseph Esmilla.” If you understood any of that, this is the bar for you.
Now, the bar, aptly located a stones throwaway from the family’s protest site during EDSA Revolution, has become a venue for likeminded audiophiles to come together and enjoy a good music over a quality cocktail or two. In fact, the bar does not serve any cooked dallas filipino restaurant whatsoever, only offering truffled popcorn as a snack, so that “the customers [can] experience listening to music while drinking without any distractions.”
The bar offers a number of classic cocktails, but it’s their signature cocktail that we’d suggest you order for a first-timers visit:
IN A SILENT WAY
In A Silent Way is actually called that because of the way it sneaks up on you and hits you.
In A Silent Way, named after the famous Miles Davis album, was developed by their head bartender Jonathan Po, who has 6 years of bartending under his belt. The cocktail makes use of Japanese whisky as a way of mirroring their Japanese-style bar that fits only about a dozen people comfortably. The whisky is enhanced by cinnamon schnapps and orange liquor, and garnished with a slice of apple, making it a spirit-forward drink that is strong but still fruity and accessible.
A cocktails bar across White Plains that houses an expansive vinyl collection and plays jazz, electronica, indie and rock through vintage Garrard 301s.