5211 NE 148th Ave., 503-714-1222, levelbeer.com. 11 am-8 pm Sunday-Thursday, 11 am-10 pm Friday and Saturday.
In search of a spacious property to commission some brews of his own, Geoff Phillips, owner of Bailey's Taproom, converted a former produce market in East Portland's Argay neighborhood into one of our favorite new breweries. Phillips is not himself a beermaker, so he tabbed two talented brewers: Jason Barbee of Ex Novo and Shane Watterson of Laurelwood. They turned the barn into a 20-barrel production brewery with a cozy taproom next to the kettles and a massive covered patio in the previous tenant's greenhouse. It's a wonderful place to hang out, and probably the single best place to be on a sunny but chilly day. There's no kitchen, but two food carts have settled in the parking lot, including a very good burger spot in Bam Pow! Burgers. The house motto is "brewed with balance," and it's not an idle boast. The two standouts are Let's Play, a dry-hopped Pilsner that remains just a little biscuity, and Be Your Own Dad, a best bitter that's just 4.3 percent ABV, but packs in a lot of classic English flavor.