Pabst Blue Ribbon may be made in Milwaukee, but it was made by Portland. We not only saved the brand from the scrap heap of history, next to Schlitz and Falstaff, but have delighted in consuming it in both massive quantities and ever-more elaborate presentations.
Related: What Got Portland So Hooked on PBR?
The Place That Made Pabst Cool:
4639 SE Woodstock Blvd.
Woodstock's Lutz Tavern is the original PBR trucker hat, the oldest surviving hipster Pabst bar in not just Portland but the world—the place Pabst itself credits for starting the revival of Pabst in the early 2000s after decades of decline (local music promoter Mike Thrasher claims it was actually a now-defunct rock venue called EJ's).
The Keg Killer:
Yamhill Pub, 223 SW Yamhill St.
The pleasantly gritty Yamhill Pub is the most dedicated Pabst bar in Portland. The downtown dive—only a few blocks from MusicfestNW and as covered in graffiti as a 1970s New York subway station—pours more Pabst from its taps than any bar in Oregon. It goes through 18 kegs of PBR a week, down from a peak of 26. It's one of the most prolific Pabst-guzzling holes in the country, with a wall of Pabst trophies to prove it.
Top PBR Root Beer Bar: White Owl Social Club, 1305 SE 8th Ave.
Pabst struck gold with its new and ridiculously popular Not Your Father's Root Beer line. In a blind taste test, we named it the best alcoholic root beer of them all. Amid hip-hop dance nights and pop-up Japanese barbecues, the White Owl's back patio downs more hard root beer than anywhere else in the city.
The All-PBR Menu:
The Side Street Tavern, 828 SE 34th Ave.
On the tiny Side Street Tavern's dedicated PBR menu, ordering a Portlander will get you a beer with a fake mustache. If you ask for a Gimme Shelter—a whopping $6.50—it comes with a full-sized, functional umbrella. Other Pabsts come with an orange slice (the Distinguished Gentleman) and a Pall Mall loosie (the Cheap Cowboy). But for a keepsake, ask for the Andy Warhol. With your Pabst, you will receive a Polaroid of you holding a Pabst.
Best Pabst Selection:
Ship Ahoy Tavern, 2889 SE Gladstone St.
When you order PBR at south-of-Powell dive bar Ship Ahoy, you have to be specific. "Bottle, draft or can?" All are $2 except at happy hour, when draft drops to $1.50.
Delta Cafe, 4607 SE Woodstock Blvd.
Two doors down from the Lutz, if you order a $3.50 Pabst 40-ouncer at Southern-fried eatery the Delta Cafe, it comes Champagne-style, delicately chilled in an ice bucket.
Most Cans Crushed: Quarterworld, formerly Sabala's, 4811 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
More Pabst cans were crushed on July 24, 2005, at Hawthorne venue Sabala's—now boozy arcade Quarterworld—than at any other Portland bar, on any other night on record. Fans of Maryland stoner-rock outfit Clutch downed 74 cases of Pabst tallboys, the equivalent of 21 half-barrel kegs.
Home of Pabstmania: The Vern, 2622 SE Belmont St.
The Vern—where two very serious dudes wrestled each other for Morrissey tickets in 2012—sold "Andre the Giant" Pabst 40-ouncers at WrestleMania viewing parties in the 2000s, and hosted a 2010 in-bar wrestling match between Pabst's Matt Slessler and John Naekel, co-owner of North Killingsworth whiskey bar the Old Gold. The match ended in a double-DQ after a woman in the crowd got so excited she threw her beer glass against the wall, shattering it.