1. Pink Rabbit
232 NW 12th Ave., pinkrabbitpdx.com.
Neither of the last two bars to try this space made it even a year. But since Pink Rabbit moved in earlier this year, table wait times indicate the third time may be the charm. The '80s-inspired interior is simply mesmerizing—from the psychedelic, color-rich mural to the over-the-top drink menu—as we assume it's meant to be.
2. Von Ebert
131 NW 13th Ave., 503-820-7721, vonebertbrewing.com.
No longer a purveyor of hearty Midwest burgers or heavily hop-driven pours since parting ways with Ohio-based Fat Head's Brewery, Von Ebert has reinvented itself as a more balanced, less ostentatious brewpub. With gorgeously clear German lagers and solid Belgians, it's now easier than ever to take buddies who aren't beer nerds to this hangarlike space.
3. Thelonious Wines
516 NW 9th Ave., 503-444-7447, theloniouswines.com.
Tucked perfectly between the rougher end of the North Park Blocks and the nicer end of the Pearl District lies a charming neighborhood wine bar and bottle shop. Happy hour fills the few, sturdy tables out front with chatty pairs of friends and lovers, while visitors retreat to moodier surrounds within after dark.
4. Bar Rione
810 NW 12th Ave., 503-954-1014.
Bar Rione turned a concrete box once occupied by a convenience store into a sophisticated cocktail party. At this waiting room for Pearl Italian spot Piazza Italia, the décor is comparatively subdued, but that just makes the more modern features pop, like a teal braided chandelier that spreads across the ceiling like a canopy.
5. 10 Barrel Brewing
1411 NW Flanders St., 503-224-1700, 10barrel.com.
To many craft beer obsessives, 10 Barrel's massive industrial-chic brewpub is a no-go zone, written off as a cog in the machine of parent company AB InBev. But the fact remains that brewer Whitney Burnside makes some of the best taster trays in town. Coconut stouts melt like candy bars, hoppy Pilsners offer a soft and bready underbelly, and her IPAs scream with flavor.