426 SW Washington St., 503-228-3669, kellysolympian.com. 10 am-2 am daily. Happy hour 4-7 pm daily, 11 pm-1 am Sunday-Thursday: $1 off wells, wine and drafts, food specials.
Old Portland is in its death throes, but Kelly's Olympian needn't worry. After all, the place isn't just old—it's practically primordial. Opened in 1902, the downtown landmark is the Galapagos tortoise of the bar scene, a living artifact that's seen the world change so many times there's no reason to think it won't still be around when Newer Portland replaces our condos with 3D-printed skymalls. That's not to say Kelly's is the same bar it was a century ago, of course. Video poker machines occupy the former cardroom in the back, the adjoining knife shop is now a music venue, and if there's any truth to the long-standing rumors that a urinal trough once ran along the foot of the bar, allowing male patrons to empty and then immediately refill their bladders without leaving their stools, it must've disappeared around the time Teddy Roosevelt created the Food and Drug Administration. An early 2000s ownership change turned it into a biker bar of the rockabilly variety—vintage motorcycles hover overhead, suspended from the ceiling, and the interior is lit almost entirely by neon greaser swag. But Kelly's remains, as it surely was for preceding generations who've watched the landscape of their hometown grow increasingly unfamiliar, Portland's North Star: As long as it's here, you'll always know where you are.