832 N Killingsworth St., 503-234-5683, killingsworthdynasty.com. 7 pm-2 am Wednesday-Saturday, 8 pm-close Sunday.
Established: April 2015
You get the sense that Killingsworth Dynasty would rather be a warehouse in New York than a neighborhood bar in North Portland. The high ceilings and darkly lit space implies a sort of feigned seediness, despite an all-vegan menu and LGBTQ-friendly vibe that attracts a specifically Portland crowd: socially conscious party people. And so while you wait in line at the all-genders restroom, it doesn't seem odd to overhear a woman describe her drunken attempt to make use of a urinal. On the dance floor in the bar's farthest and darkest corner, sweaty people thrash around to left-of-the-dial art music, and in the large leather booths below exposed-brick walls that often serve as a screen for projected animations, you can blend into the background and sip sweet coconut-milk-based cocktails (like the $9 lavender-cream or horchata martinis). Note that while Dynasty is a lot louder and darker than most places in which you'd usually sit down for a meal, its menu has a decent selection of veganized Southern fare, including the holy grail of plant-based comfort food: vegan chicken and waffles.
Bar story: When owner Michael Wolfson originally applied for a license to open the venue in 2011, the city of Portland had some concerns about "the neighborhood" and what the bar might do to stir up crime. "This is a bar for hipsters on bicycles," Wolfson told neighborhood association members at an OLCC hearing. "We might get some tagging, but I'll clean that up."