- 21-KARAT GOLD DUST: The people behind Club 21 and Gold Dust Meridian are opening a bar called Double Barrel at 2002 SE Division St., across from New Seasons Market. The space has gone through a long string of tenants and monikers in recent years, including Dillyâs Sports Bar, KJâs Bar & Grill, Wynneâs, Wynners and Seven Corners (named after the intersection at the edge of Laddâs Addition). The space is being renovated, says co-owner Marcus Archambeault, and is expected to open early next year.
- TOTAL ECLIPSE: Ecliptic Brewing, which should end 2013 as the only full-scale brewery to open in Portland proper this year, has started rolling out bottles. On Dec. 9, John Harrisâ ginormous new North Portland brewpub started selling a âwinter IPAâ called Filament, which will also be distributed in stores. On Dec. 16, Ecliptic will start selling Illuminating the Path, a pinot noir barrel-aged strong ale that Harris made in Florida with Tampaâs Cigar City Brewing.
- IN LOVE WITH A MACHINE: Coffee blog Sprudge.com reports that barista champion Billy Wilson will open his fourth Barista location, at 823 NW 23rd Ave., and will ditch French press forâ¦a Fetco coffee-brewing machine. âItâs funny to see how the brew methods always come full circle,â Wilson told Sprudge. âTen years ago, everyone was all about the French pressâit was everywhere. Then it was the whole manual pourover thing, and the vac pot.â
- HEAR THE GROWL: As of Thanksgiving, the recently renovated Safeway supermarket at 2800 SE Hawthorne Blvd. became the first of the national chainâs Oregon stores to offer growler fills, says the storeâs wine steward, Jill Powers. The only other Safeway to do so is in Phoenix. The growler selection includes two beers each from Breakside and Fort George, and Hop Valley Festeroo Winter Ale. This is apparently an experiment for Safeway. If the Hawthorne location is successful, Powers says, the next in line is probably the Portland store at 8145 SW Barbur Blvd.
- MAXED OUT: The theater once known as OMNIMAX has reopened as the Empirical Theater. OMSI has replaced the dome theater with a smallerâbut still four-story-tallâflat screen and converted to digital. The theater is showing science movies and kid-friendly seasonal fare, including A Christmas Story and The Polar Express.