Bye & Bye
1011 NE Alberta St., 503-281-0537, thebyeandbye.com. Noon-11 pm.
The parking lot next to Bye & Bye was once used mostly as a turnaround for ride shares dropping off thirsty bar-hoppers. Now, it’s critical real estate supporting the vegan bar’s outdoor dining program. The asphalt on the corner of 10th and Alberta holds upward of 30 well-spaced wooden picnic tables, some in sun, some under the cover of easy-ups, most near heaters. This is in addition to the still-functioning bamboo backyard reached by taking a stroll through the bar’s dark interior. Ordering takes place at the bar, whether it’s for the namesake Mason jar of peach vodka or the vegan Chipotle Mac & Cheese. ELIZA ROTHSTEIN.
Features: Heated, Covered, Dog-Friendly, Good for Large Groups.
1125 SE Division St., 503-234-6012, thebeermongers.com. Noon-9 pm daily.
If its Instagram account is to be trusted, the BeerMongers has not closed in over 4,000 days—even after the easy-up erected in the parking lot collapsed during the Great Blizzard of 2021. “Paul’s Patio,” this scruffy, 10-tap beer bar’s pivot to keep that streak going through the pandemic, is a no-frills affair with a few picnic tables under yet another easy-up and a constellation of smaller tables stretching out to the sidewalk. It’s a more modest setup compared to its neighbor, Apex, which is a suitable alternative if you prefer to pay cash to drink Californian IPAs and obscure European brews on a patio with a bit more wiggle room for your bachelorette party. Or you can stop by ‘Mongers, which provides a one-stop shop for local heroes and out-of-state whales alike, all of which can be plucked from the fridge and consumed on the premises for a $1 corkage fee. There’s no food, but you’re welcome to order takeout from nearby spots like Los Gorditos, Virtuous Pie, Double Dragon or the Ranch Pizza window that just opened inside the newly expanded Baerlic taproom about two blocks away. PETE COTTELL.
Features: Dog Friendly, Covered, Heated.
6506 SE Foster Road, 503-477-7224, dahui.bar. Noon-11 pm daily.
Want to get away? Well, it’s probably best to avoid international travel for a few more months. Instead, head to tiki’d-out dive bar Da Hui to get a taste of paradise. Sit at one of its handful of picnic tables or snag a barstool beneath its island-inspired outdoor patio and sip one of its sizable cocktails, like a Lava Flow or Oahu Sunset, both filled with fruit juices and silver rum, and pair it with a classic Hawaiian dish such as kalua pork and kalbi ribs. It might not be true paradise but close enough. ANYA REHON.
Features: Covered, Heated.
Hammer & Stitch
2377 NW Wilson St., 971-254-8982, hsbrew.co. Noon-6 pm Wednesday-Thursday and Sunday, noon-8 pm Friday-Saturday.
Ben Dobler has strong opinions about pale ales. “One of my biggest eye-opening experiences was last year judging the [Oregon Beer Awards], and I was in the medal round of pale ales,” says the 30-year veteran of the Portland craft beer industry. “Those, to me, were not pale ales. They were all IPA or IPA-lite.” Dobler’s approach to the pale ale is consistent with all of the beers at Hammer & Stitch, the brewery he co-founded on the northernmost edge of Slabtown. The five core offerings on tap since last October’s opening are all true to form and don’t rely on gimmicks to win drinkers over. Even the names of the beers are straightforward—if you want an IPA, you order The IPA. The taproom itself is a throwback to a simpler time in craft beer, when breweries often popped up on the industrial fringes, and tracking down those old warehouses and repurposed auto garages felt like a scavenger hunt. A garage door opens up to an elevated, no-frills deck made of blond wooden planks shaded by a combination of umbrellas and repurposed carport canopies Dobler scored for a good deal at Costco. The surrounding warehouses may not be much to look at, but it feels as though you’ve discovered a secret industrial oasis. ANDI PREWITT.
Features: Covered, Heated, Dog Friendly.
Imperial Bottle Shop & Taproom
3090 SE Division St., 971-302-6899, 3-10 pm Wednesday-Friday, noon-10 pm Saturday-Sunday. 2006 NE Alberta St., 503-954-2021, 4-10 pm Wednesday-Friday, noon-10 pm Saturday-Sunday. imperialbottleshop.com.
Excitement happens in the little moments these days, and huddling with your quarantine pod in a rainbow-painted chalet while listening to the Rolling Stones and sipping pFriem’s award-winning Vienna lager certainly qualifies. The 8-year-old bottle shop and taproom, with locations in Northeast and Southeast Portland, sells a juicy array of beers and ciders, with hundreds of bottles and cans for purchase. Plenty of picnic tables are present at both locations, but the three uniquely painted and individualized huts at their Division location are the most appealing. Purchase their local lager sampler—featuring Occidental Brewing’s Maibock and Pono Brewing’s Three Amigos Mexican lager—to make your experience even more of an adventure. ANYA REHON.
Features: Covered, Heated, Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups.
4237 N Mississippi Ave., 503-954-2674, prostportland.com. 11 am-11 pm daily.
The current Prost setup boasts four unique zones for guzzling liters and dunking pretzels in mustard. The German “bier bar” has opened its garage doors to bring light to its dark wood interior and create a semi-outdoor experience for those comfortable with distanced indoor dining. On the patio itself are two distinct areas: The fire-pit space, which heats the benches and three picnic tables nearby, and the outdoor sports bar, where two tables enjoy hefty overhead heat lamps and a sightline to the TV above the outdoor taps. Finally, Prost has taken up space in the adjoining food cart pod. Take a few steps from the bar patio toward the Matt’s BBQ truck and turn right into an enclosed picnic table section. In total, there are 18 tables to dine at, most of which fit a party of six. No matter the spot, patrons are welcome to eat whatever food they want, and even bring in a cocktail from the nearby Bloodbuzz, so long as they’ve purchased something from Prost. It’s not tough to do. After a year of uncertainty: Prost’s list of Pilsners, dunkels and bocks is refreshingly steadfast and crisp. ELIZA ROTHSTEIN.
Features: TV, Dog Friendly, Large Groups, Heated, Covered.
304 SE 2nd Ave., 503-718-2337, wayfinderbeer.com. Noon-10 pm Friday-Sunday.
There are two summer drinking experiences at Wayfinder: one at street level and one at the coveted wood patio upstairs. When the brewpub reopened its taproom patio in April after being closed for a year, it increased outdoor capacity by setting up eight tables and two heaters on the asphalt of the parking lot it shares with Produce Row. Being in the industrial eastside, the street is not a thoroughfare for pedestrians or vehicles other than freight trucks, and without speakers or music, the mood is set by periodic train chugs and the murmur of I-5. If you’re headed to Wayfinder for the experimental lagers, cold IPAs, or thick steak fries, the street seating will certainly do. But if your aim is to catch a vibe, try to land a spot on the top patio. With tables shoved into the coves and shards of Wayfinder’s pre-pandemic geometric patio, most of them heated and covered, create a sense of seclusion to dampen any lingering COVID anxiety. Since the pub takes no reservations, patrons will be testing their luck to find prime seating during mealtime. ELIZA ROTHSTEIN.
Features: Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups, Heated, Covered.
6127 NE Fremont St., 503-288-2944, madhanna.com. 11 am-11 pm daily.
The first rule of the Mad Hanna patio? “Don’t fucking spit here.” At least, that appears to be the most important rule, given how often it appears on signs posted around the outside fence. To be fair, it’s easy to understand how, after throwing back a few of its signature spiked pudding shots, customers might forget they’re at a bar and not the punk house that threw the most shitfaced ragers in college. Well manicured it is not: Easy-ups are balanced on cinder blocks, space heaters sit in milk crates, planters are filled with nothing but dirt, and the mix-and-match furniture looks as if it were pulled out of the storage shed after being left behind by the previous occupants. (The Oregon Trail and Duck Hunt murals, though? Definitely the current tenants.) If it all sounds a bit thrown together, it matches the interior’s thrift-shop aesthetic—and for anyone still in touch with their dirtbag youth, it makes for a hang as comfortably familiar as the ratty La-Z-Boy you found on a street corner freshman year and still take naps in. MATTHEW SINGER.
Features: Covered, Heated, TV.
832 N Beech St., 971-703-4516, stormbreakerbrewing.com. Noon-9 pm Monday, noon-10 pm Tuesday-Thursday, noon-11 pm Friday, 11 am-11 pm Saturday, 11 am-9 pm Sunday.
StormBreaker has made awesome outdoor spaces part of its growing brand. When the brewery opened in the tin shed that used to house Amnesia Brewing in 2013, it inherited one of the bigger patios on North Mississippi Avenue, and the only one directly facing the street—a major boon given the amount of tourist foot traffic passing by. And when it expanded into St. Johns five years later, it took over another impressive piece of real estate, this one highlighted by a mural of the neighborhood’s titular bridge. The original location, though, is still the best and, during the pandemic, got even better by expanding into the adjacent side street and adding about a dozen picnic tables extending halfway down the block. As for the beer, name a style and StormBreaker makes a damn fine version of it, from its citrusy Cloud Ripper IPA to the Opacus Stout, which has all the hints of chocolate you want without going down like a pint of Ovaltine. MATTHEW SINGER.
Features: Covered, Heated, Good for Large Groups.
2337 NE Glisan St., 503-894-9484, tropicale.co. Noon-10 pm Tuesday-Friday, 10 am-10 pm Saturday-Sunday.
After more than a year without travel, Tropicale will scratch the itch for a beach vacation, minus the ocean or even a speck of sand. The vibes get you close enough, particularly on the spacious and vibrant patio space, where the energetic waitstaff dances to upbeat music while serving margaritas in hollowed-out pineapples. The brainchild of Portland’s “Piña Colada King,” Alfredo Climaco—who died tragically from COVID-19 complications just months after the bar opened last year—Tropicale’s menu overflows with other flavorful cocktails, like the smoky and not overly sweet Viejo Cabrón, a spiked cafecito (on ice!), three choices of margaritas with the no-brainer option to add a tamarind straw, and mezcal flights ranging from $15 to $35. Tropicale also offers more than a dozen Caribbean and Latin American plates suited for brunch, lunch and dinner. And during the final weeks of spring, when the evenings are still chilly, the patio’s fire pits and heat lamps will do plenty to keep up the image of paradise. TESS RISKI.
Features: Covered, Heated, Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups.
4306 N Williams Ave., 503-288-1085, vendettapdx.com. 3-11 pm daily.
This classic garage-door hipster refuge—the only structure in eyeshot that didn’t spring up along North Williams Avenue in the past decade—enforces social distancing with a doorway sign that forbids entry when the bar is at capacity. So waiting for a picnic table at Vendetta feels like seeking entry to a VIP lounge that whisks you back to 2006, or whatever year you arrived in town. Barflies smoke cigarettes under a canopy of umbrellas and trees, “Thriller” booms on the speakers, and a pint of pFriem Pilsner is $7. (OK, that last part feels new.) Vendetta took the pandemic seriously: It stayed closed longer than it had to, installed plexiglass around the bar, and is only letting people sit outside, under the supervision of “COVID Cops”—the bar’s nomenclature for the sanitation team spraying down those picnic tables. The effect is a little like visiting a Museum of Normalcy. But Vendetta was a time machine anyway. The nostalgia just cuts deeper now. Little wonder there’s a wait—nobody wants to return to the present. AARON MESH.
Features: Good for Large Groups.
5101 N Interstate Ave., 503-841-6176, satellitetavern.com. Noon-10 pm Monday-Tuesday noon-11 pm Wednesday-Saturday, noon-9 pm Sunday.
Inside, sports bar Satellite Tavern has a must-see mural: the likes of Timber Joey, “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and Clyde Drexler eating with James Beard, Beyoncé and David Bowie à la The Last Supper. Outside, the only thing keeping the generously sized beer garden from feeling like an actual tailgate is the lack of RVs and pickups. On a recent weekday evening, you could watch the Timbers, Blazers, and multiple baseball games on six outdoor TVs from more than a dozen picnic tables, most of them covered and near a heat lamp, plus an array of Adirondack chairs around a fire pit. (“Please ask your server to turn on the heaters as they are full of COVID germs,” a sign reads.) The beer is both local craft (Rogue, 10 Barrel, the Gilgamesh “Terry Porter”) and classically cheap, while the bar food and cocktails are both better than they have to be. It could be the perfect place to watch the Blazers lose the NBA play-in round...er, upset Utah in the Western Conference finals. JASON COHEN.
Features: Covered, Heated, Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups, TV, Games.
401 NE 28th Ave., 503-206-7983, stammtischpdx.com. 11 am-10 pm, Friday-Saturday. 3-10 pm Monday-Thursday.
Don’t let the fear of pronouncing “Herbstfärbung” and “Backhendl mit Bratkartoffel” intimidate you. The friendly staff at this German bier hall—a spinoff of the ever-popular Prost on North Mississippi—is more than willing to recommend items and help navigate the menu. Stammtisch offers dozens of drink options, including the citrusy and slightly bitter Der Leidende cocktail and Benediktiner Hell, a smooth and malty lager. In fact, any of the two-dozen or so beer options will wash down the savory lunch and dinner items. The Hausgemachte Wurst plate, which comes with one to three sausages atop a bed of sauerkraut, is perfect for sharing. For an out-of-body experience, dip the greasy, piping-hot Bretzel in a bit of schmaltz (rendered chicken fat). Stammtisch is open for indoor service in its breezy, open-air dining hall, with about a dozen tables outside. TESS RISKI.
Features: Covered, Heated, Dog Friendly.
5224 SE 26th Ave., 503-208-3416, giganticbrewing.com. Noon-9 pm daily.
Even during the social distancing era, Gigantic Brewing’s taproom remains one of the friendliest places to drink in the neighborhood. Sure, for the time being, sinking into the taproom couches and watching Timbers games with the bartenders are off-limits. But you can still gulp full pints of the brewery’s tart, juicy beers, and sprawl out on one of two sunny patios. Hidden in the industrial area west of Reed College, the wide picnic tables make social distancing relatively easy, the garage-style doors allow for plenty of airflow while you’re waiting in line for a drink, and the lack of a food menu means the bartenders rarely have to come out from behind the cash register’s plexiglass barrier. (Sustenance is provided outside by the Hawaiian food cart 808 Grinds.) It’s no wonder the brewery’s zip-up hoodie- and baseball cap-wearing clientele seem as laid back as ever. SHANNON GORMLEY.
Features: Dog Friendly, Good for Large Groups.