The Old Gold
2105 N Killingsworth St., 503-894-8937, drinkinoregon.com. 3-11 pm Monday-Friday 3-11 pm, Saturday-Sunday noon-11 pm.
At long last, the OG Old Gold is back: full food menu, full array of cocktails and fully outdoor seating, both on the main porch and the sidewalks around Killingsworth and Gay streets, plus the tented patio it shares with Spitz, the neighboring Mediterranean restaurant. Dogs are more than welcome, and on nice days the staff may also open the garage—the space was once an auto shop—for indoor patrons. There’s still contactless ordering from any table, but you can also walk up to the near side of the bar, the better option to admire all that whiskey, whether in the bottles overhead or written on the massive chalkboard list. The current inventory of Scotch, bourbon, rye, Irish and Japanese is around 225 bottles, including the exclusive, hand-selected Weller Full Proof single barrel, Nikka Coffey Malt and Michter’s Rye 10 Year. Hello, old friends! JASON COHEN.
Features: Covered, Heated, Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups
2136 SW Halsey St., Troutdale, 503-669-8610, mcmenamins.com. 11 am-11 pm daily.
A stroll around Edgefield is the closest most city slickers will ever get to spending an evening at a rich friend’s country estate. It’s the crown jewel of the McMenamins empire, and it’s easy enough to set aside any grievances toward the regional food-and-bev giant and just enjoy a plate of tots and a plastic cup of Hammerhead while the sun sets over the garden. The Power Station is the central hub for walk-up food and drink orders, while the winery and distillery bar are fine waypoints for a fill-up before you drop anchor in front of one of the covered fire pits adjacent to what used to be (and may be again) a fantastic outdoor music venue. Wait times for food on a recent visit stretched to two hours, though, so you probably shouldn’t show up hangry. PETE COTTELL.
Features: Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups, Games, Heated.
5015 NE Fremont St., 503-206-4308, hitoptavern.com. 3 pm-11 pm Wednesday-Friday, 2 pm-11 pm Saturday-Sunday.
Laid back for a cocktail bar but nicer than your average watering hole, Hi-Top Tavern is the kind of relaxed neighborhood spot that hosts tattooed punk kids and rosé-swilling moms alike. The newer bar opened the summer before the pandemic in Beaumont-Wilshire—less than ideal timing in what isn’t exactly a destination neighborhood. Luckily for Hi-Top, its selling point has always been its patio. Now, even on a weeknight during a pandemic, the bar is usually near capacity. As an extra COVID-19 safety measure, the breezy, picnic table-lined patio offers order by phone, so you can get sweet, punchy cocktails and hearty sandwiches with minimal human contact. SHANNON GORMLEY.
Features: Covered, Heated, Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups.
3560 SE Powell Blvd., 503-206-5273, johnsmarketplace.com. 11 am-9pm daily.
Prior to expanding across the Willamette, John’s Marketplace was the craft beer shop of choice for Southwest Portlanders who loved to tell any transplant who would listen that the eastside wasn’t always the coolest part of town. Upon arrival on Southeast Powell, John’s propped up two beloved foot carts—Jojo and Holy Trinity Barbecue—with a spacious covered patio, some friendly meat-free competition, and a window into a stately bottle shop that offers 15 taps of beer from popular local and regional breweries like Wayfinder, Upright, Bale Breaker and Fremont. This section of Powell still isn’t the sexiest pick for fun in the sun on a hot day, but the parking lot surrounding John’s has been packed on recent visits regardless. It goes to show that quality food and a good amount of elbow room can turn even the most unseemly parking lot into an attractive outdoor dining choice in the COVID-19 era. PETE COTTELL.
Features: Covered, Dog Friendly.
5211 NE 148th Ave., 503-714-1222, levelbeer.com. 11 am-9 pm Sunday-Thursday, 11 am-10 pm Saturday-Sunday.
With the exception of the small taproom, the converted produce market that Level Beer calls home is pretty much all patio. Just outside the NES-themed interior is an old greenhouse that makes a splendid year-round choice for al fresco imbibing—the industrial heating lamps dangling from the vaulted ceilings attract Patagonia-clad brew dads even when the temperature is near freezing. In the warmer months, the yard out back is a grassy wonderland for young parents in need of a place to let their dogs and children run loose while downing a pint of haze in the folding chairs they brought from home. The beer selection is reliably diverse and includes something for everyone, with a generous selection of IPAs and straw-colored crispies supplemented by the occasional dry Irish stout or malty English ale for the old heads. PETE COTTELL.
Features: Dog friendly, covered, heated, good for large groups.