1955 W Burnside St., 503-228-4574. 7 am-2:30 am daily.
West Burnside Street's Tony's Tavern is the kind of tiny, low-down dive that might kick off with breakfast pitcher specials for the third-shift workers at 7 am, and make its last call later than anyone else nearby at 2:25 or so, after which there's to-go beer in the fridge. It's also the sort of place the cheap beer stays at $2.50 because owner Tony Kassapakis knows many of his customers are on fixed incomes, and where former news reporters hold court for more than a decade before having their own funeral there, too. Indeed, at least four different Tony's customers had wakes at the bar last year.
From its beginnings as a beer-and-wine-only dockworker bar with a blue-collar base and a cutout of John Wayne in the front to its current crossover status as a home to every old-Portland nostalgic, hard drinker, retiree, party kid and blue-collar worker in the neighborhood, Tony's has long been both the diviest and friendliest dive in a neighborhood that once consisted only of dives. Note that Tony's Tavern is one of the rare spots to still have a juke with actual CDs in it. It is split—like the bar itself—among punk, soul, classic and country.
Bar story: In December, Tony's almost held its own wake at the bar. The bar announced its closure, but the landlord came back to the table at the eleventh hour.