Remember when the Pearl was a hip and exciting place? River Pig Saloon serves as a faint echo of that bygone era. The bar has a nice, lived-in vibe. Non-shitty '80s music plays—including Duran Duran's theme from A View to a Kill. All in all, a Pearl watering hole unfamiliar to new Portlanders and all too familiar to natives. At least, this was my theory, despite the $6 craft pints. And then you notice as the night goes on that the bar is filled with frat types. And then you find out that Tecate is $4. Before you can grok what happened to this formerly cozy bar, the speakers are blasting Kid Rock's "All Summer Long." You order the house PickleBack ($7) to try and recapture the vibe from just moments earlier, but it's too late. A night at River Pig is like a brief history of the Pearl. Resistance is futile. A kind pair of middle-aged women munching on some delicious fried pickles ($4 during happy hour) quite enjoyed this atmosphere. But they couldn't find any room to dance in River Pig. I directed them to CC Slaughters. Anyway, come early.
Happy hour: 3 to 6 pm and 10 pm to 2 am are the only times you should order food here. Happy hour's great.
Entertainment: #sports, on a huge projection screen in the back.