North Lombard Street is so dense with pubs you'd think they shared a liquor license. Two more bars opened in October, and both took the street's name as their own.
The manager from downtown's soon-to-close Rialto started The Lombard Pub (3416 N Lombard St., 503-206-7751) by throwing a bunch of stoner art, trippy paintings and pinball machines into the old Foggy Notion space.
Unless the house DJ is working, expect Led Zeppelin and AC/DC, music that matches the classic-rock album covers on the back of the menus. Also expect the smell of fryer oil—the kitchen hood seems to be out of commission. During Wednesday night trivia, 30-something couples order hand-dipped corn dogs while guessing at questions about stone fruit. The beer menu has Hop Valley and 10 Barrel, and Eagle Rare bourbon can be snagged for $7. The crowd is smaller than it was during the Foggy Notion days, but everyone seems to embrace the change in decor.
A mile away, Lombard House (7337 N Lombard St., 503-539-5889) is a long, narrow train-car bar filled with vintage Olympia beer ads and red-cheeked regulars.
Lombard House owner Brian Koch formerly worked at Saraveza and the Commons Brewery, and his connections pay off with a great 10-tap beer menu featuring a semi-tart farmhouse ale from Upright, plus beers from the Commons, Pfriem and Ruse, and some rotating Germans and Belgians.
Koch believes it's not just his background in the beer industry that helped him get such a warm reception in the neighborhood—his bar's also across the street from the much-loved Beer Porch craft-beer bar. Since you'll be lucky to find even a Slim Jim at Lombard House, Koch sends hungry customers to food carts across the street, and there's a revolving door of chicken and waffles coming from Dub's St. Johns.