The Upside Down Burger is not upside down, but it'll turn you that way. Upside Down (3318 SE Milwaukie Ave., 971-373-8607, facebook.com/upsidedownpdx), the new beer garden from Maria Hernandez and Oswaldo Bibiano—the former manager and the owner, respectively, of Uno Mas—is across from the Aladdin Theater and open every day but Tuesday.
It looks like one of those ramshackle aluminum-and-plywood burger shanties you'd expect to find by the side of a country freeway in the desert, ringed by picnic tables and a little pressboard fence. The titular burger ($9) is served up on a beautifully toasted bun and mixes aged white cheddar with a hint of chile for a goopy, spicy kick more than backed up by the thick beef. Otherwise, the menu's an anything-goes hodgepodge of Mexican, American and Mexican-American—a beautifully chill shoulder shrug to pair with the 30 taps ranging from Modelo to Culmination Choco Stout and Sunriver's Vicious Mosquito IPA.
Alongside a lovely chile verde ($8) laden with bay leaf and thyme, you'll find a "hipster bowl" ($7) that's essentially a vegetarian kale-and-pinto take on dirty fries. The fries were a bit undercooked and mealy, but you can get a mess of them covered in chile verde for $5.
Really what Upside Down offers is an otherwise bereft Brooklyn neighborhood's first true patio hang—with a 4-6 pm happy hour (all-day Sunday) that drops the burger price to a fiver even on weekends. On a semi-warm weekday evening, the tables were jammed fence-to-fence with a mix of families, double-dates and young couples ignoring each other while staring at their phones. This is what Brooklyn summer will look like now: a little meat and spice, and a whole lot of sunny-day beer.