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How We Chose Portland's 100 Best Bars
In the belief that bars are Portland’s most accurate repositories of history, we’ve listed them in reverse-chronological order from the date they opened. Start with the new, and end with the old.
1. No Bones Beach Club
You're in a garbage-food heaven made of nuts and veg.
2. Pearl Tavern
Welcome to Joey Harrington’s bar.
3. The Old Portland
“This is the coolest wine bar in the world,” the Dandy Warhols’ Courtney Taylor-Taylor told us while sitting in his own Slabtown wine bar.
It’s a warm room with the best bar pizza Portland has ever seen.
5. Bar Casa Vale
Casa Vale is the kind of dim, drunky, comfortably hip tapas and cocktail bar the town's been missing.
Get the nachos.
7. Lombard House
It's a literal house on Lombard, and not a big one.
It’s easily the most heatedly anticipated wine locale to roll into Portland in years.
Already, Century has the vibe other would-be hipster sports bars have failed to create.
10. Bible Club
There are no passwords or fake-secret knocks.
That kickass burger is $5 on Wednesdays
12. Pop Tavern
For a bar explicitly devoted to pop, there’s a sense that this, finally, is a place where history is preserved.
13. Great Notion
It’s also the most discussed, debated and imitated brewery in the state, having completely changed the conversation around IPA.
It's worth the trek.
15. La Moule
Bars may be quiet or bars may be loud, but rarely are they so dreamlike.
16. Old Gilbert Road
The Tater Tots are plentiful, the beer taps are pretty damn good, and the bands are sometimes so local they don’t even leave the neighborhood.
17. Shift Drinks
It could be the fact that Shift Drinks’ happy hour runs all day.
18. No Fun Bar
Big Buck Hunter and pinball may materialize one day.
At Stag, my ripped, shirtless bartender offered me a free “Barbie shot.”
20. Killingsworth Dynasty
They've got the holy grail of plant-based comfort food: vegan chicken and waffles.
21. Solae's Lounge
Before it was the Nest, the building was home to Joe’s Place, one of several black-owned businesses on Northeast Alberta Street, a neighborhood that was once Portland’s African-American cultural hub.
22. Black Water Bar
It's the lone beacon of all-ages punk action anywhere near Irvington.
23. The Liquor Store
It’s like partying at the parental home of a rich friend who doesn’t give a shit.
Hawthorne art project and drinkery Likewise has always made it clear that business wasn’t really their business.
25. Fat Head's Brewing
The oafish branding couldn't be more at odds with the Portland aesthetic.
Stammtisch is both Portland’s best German restaurant and its best German bar by a mile.
27. Angel Face
The house specialty lies in improvising concoctions uniquely matched to the tastes/moods/eccentricities of their clientele.
It's impossible to go wrong with anything from this menu.
29. Tin Bucket
They have 36 dedicated beer taps (and four more to boot).
All you need to know is that there's a photo booth labeled “Confessions.”
31. Mad Hanna
"Have a Drink, Meet a Friend” is the unofficial motto.
32. White Owl Social Club
White Owl accepts all. It’s kind of like capitalism that way.
33. SE Wine Collective
It serves as a clubhouse of sorts for the Oregon progressive wine scene that welcomes all.
34. Pix Patisserie
Pix is a world-class Champagne and sherry bar, and a continental-caliber frustration.
35. Hale Pele
At Northeast Broadway's Hale Pele, you feel like you’re in the best little bar in fake Hawaii.
Half the customers at this Belmont Street bar look like they walked out of a Steely Dan video. And the others? They just want nachos.
Dinner spot by day, it’s a packed meat market and drinker’s paradise at night.
38. Beech Street
Take your Tinder date upstairs and nestle into a cozy nook on Victorian-style sofas set.
39. Dig a Pony
Same as with the Beatles—whose Let It Be album inspired Dig A Pony’s name—popularity doesn't necessarily mean lowered standards.
40. Rum Club
Though still loosely tropical in name and spirit, with a full page of cane-based cocktails, it’s outgrown the shtick to become one of the finest cocktail spots in town.
41. Paymaster Lounge
It's tin-roof patio is among the best in Slabtown.
42. Bazi Bierbrasserie
Those in search of the fruity, spicy and sour flavors of Belgium will find their hearts set ablaze at Hilda Stevens' cozy 17-tap haven.
43. The Lovecraft
The Lovecraft was founded by its owner, Jon Horrid (no joke), because he hated bars, in general.
44. Grain & Gristle
Blond-wood, sun-drenched gastropub Grain & Gristle serves the best burger in Portland.
45. Star Bar
Star Bar, like the very best nightspots, fosters the promise of aspirational bonhomie.
46. Bar Bar
Order the Bar Bar classic burger and one of the cheapest, stiffest margaritas in town.
47. The Fixin' To
North Portland's Fixin' To has always been a little bit outlaw country, a little bit rock 'n' roll.
48. Landmark Saloon
Grab one of the many cheap tallboys on offer and head outside, because Landmark boasts some of the most prime patio space in town and some of the only horseshoe pits.
49. Vintage Cocktail Lounge
The cocktails are uniformly well-made and the bites are inexpensive and designed as side snacks.
50. Cosmo Lounge
It’s decorated with kitchy felt paintings and a glowing plastic parrot.
51. Pope House Bourbon Lounge
For someone who knows nothing about the South, Pope House seems like a Southern Victorian home I’d like to grow old in while constantly discussing horse racing.
52. Lion's Eye Tavern
Calling Lion’s Eye a dive bar is an unfair assessment of what’s easily the best bar on Southeast 82nd Avenue.
53. Free House
Northeast Fremont Street's Free House is a place of resolute middlebrow comforts.
Aside from being one of the city’s best beer bars and bottle shops, Saraveza is a hot spot for the city’s Packers faithful.
55. Liberty Glass
So rarely do you find a two-story valentine to everything you love or used to love about Portland, perfectly preserved by a bunch of liquor.
56. The Standard
The bar is cheap, no-nonsense fun in a way that takes all comers and yet is loving toward its longtime regulars.
57. Bailey's Taproom
But if Bailey’s is too busy, the biggest little secret in the Portland beer scene is the Upper Lip.
58. Teardrop Lounge
Teardrop Lounge was one of the first spots to kickstart the mixology renaissance.
59. Victory Bar
You really can’t beat Victory’s lineup of comfort food, cocktails and awesome beers.
Montavilla's now decade-old taphouse is lovable hodgepodge of many great things.
Aside from the folks waiting on Tinder swipes, just about nobody comes alone nor without clear purpose, and it’s hard to imagine what regulars would even look like.
62. Florida Room
Ten years’ worth of bar-patron patina have transformed the Florida Room into the lovable dive we know today.
63. B-Side Tavern
B-Side remains delightfully scummy.
64. Brooklyn Park Pub
Anyone who manages to drink 30 of the bar’s more than 80 whiskeys gets a shirt and special privileges.
65. The Know
The restroom needs more graffiti. But "EAT SHIT, KYLE" is a good start.
66. Slow Bar
There is no bar burger that has sustained more loyalty in Portland.
67. Night Light Lounge
One of the best happy hour deals in the city? The $6 nachos, which look about a full foot high.
If you’re trying to get “turnt” and then hit up Sizzle Pie, go here.
69. Devil's Point
Foster-Powell strip club Devils Point is probably the most famous strip club in Portland.
Also: Jell-O shots that come in a flight, topped with whipped cream and Pop Rocks.
Sassy's remains one of the city's most laid-back nudie bars.
72. Aalto Lounge
They endure by serving things that taste good.
73. M Bar
You've probably passed by it a million times. Do yourself a favor and go in.
74. Low Brow Lounge
The Low Brow’s true miracle has been lingering just long enough that what seemed like garish excess in the ’90s now feels like an authentic holdover from Portland’s industrial past.
Beulahland is a neighborly bar, with the city’s first novelty Vend-o-Rama vending machine.
76. Tony's Tavern
It's home to every old-Portland nostalgic, hard drinker, retiree, party kid and blue-collar worker in the neighborhood.
You'll hear a lot of “We Are Family.”
78. Reel M Inn
Reel M Inn operates at three speeds exactly.
If there's anything you can take away from Higgins, it's that you can teach an old dog new tricks.
80. Laurelthirst Public House
It’s commonly packed tight with friendly former bohemians who can now afford the Laurelhurst neighborhood.
81. Happy Fortune
The bar’s open every day of the year, and patrons organize extensive potlucks each Thanksgiving and Christmas.
82. Club 205
As far as strip clubs in the numbers are concerned, 205 is No. 1.
83. Wooden Chicken Pub
This is a tried-and-true sports pub right down to the copious Budweiser schwag.
If you’re looking to meet someone IRL for a late-night, last-ditch Friday-night hookup, this is the dive bar to find.
85. Sloan's Tavern
The original Chicago Coin’s Band Box jukebox is the crown jewel of the bar.
86. Spare Room
The bar might host card tournaments for the elderly and infirm early in the day, a wedding party in the afternoon, and a six-deep indie-rock bill later on.
87. Horse Brass
The Horse Brass lives triumphantly on after 40 years.
88. Goose Hollw Inn
At least half the customers in the bar have been enjoying sessions with libations for more than 20 years here.
But there’s even more history inside the iPad of bartender Troy Berry—championship-winning basketball coach at Lincoln and Benson.
90. The Pink Feather
The tiki vibes begin and end with a decorative paper surfboard that says “TIKI."
91. Mary’s Club
Few things have changed since the early days when the club catered to merchant marines.
92. The Alibi
You go for the atmosphere, established by decor from the late ’40s that's barely been touched since the ’80s.
93. Lutz Tavern
Lutz claims to be the bar that started the national resurgence of Pabst Blue Ribbon.
94. World Famous Kenton Club
It's one of Portland’s last bars to still have hair on its chest and a swagger in its boots.
95. Yamhill Pub
It’s too lackadaisical about its own squalor to actively engage in the city’s ongoing culture war.
96. Renner's Grill
Fleetwood Mac is somehow always playing and the food is greasy in the best way possible.
After 83 years, the whole damn place is unaffected.
98. Skyline Tavern
The rickety-looking tavern high above the city is still one of the best places to escape for a quick scenic drive and a beer with a side of fresh air.
99. Sandy Hut
The bar is a replica of its former self that never quite existed in anyone’s memory.
100. Kelly's Olympian
Awash in neon, from the elaborate marquee out front through the memorabilia in the back, Kelly’s is a singular bar.
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