938 N Cook St., 517-9931, libertyglassbar.com.
This dimly lit bar in an old house at the base of Mississippi Avenue is downhill from a tire swing and an upgrade from every bar nearby, one of the coziest and most unpretentious cocktail-and-beer and front-porch fireplace spots in the city. Come on Sundays for spaghetti feeds, or come late to avail yourself of fernet cocktails and smoked beers on the porch. The shy can hide in the upstairs rooms, where one can often have the whole place to oneself.
3412 SE Division St., 235-2215, lompocbrewing.com/hedge-house.
Right down to the countless children who always seem to populate the lawn on sunny days, the Hedge House looks like Grandma's house, a sunny-day piece of real estate with $2.50 beer on Miser Mondays, a patio and no trace of the new gentry. It might as well be the house from Up, without the balloons.
8307 N Ivanhoe St., 285-4839, facebook.com/baowrystjohns.
The Baowry is a charmingly domestic, front-porched bungalow that is part pan-Asian eatery—with wonderful versions of its namesake dish—and partway something more like the only bar in a river town, where everyone washes up sooner or later.
2715 SE Belmont St., 764-9023.
With art on its walls ranging from boudoir to portraits of old rockers, plus a sun-and-moon mural on the patio, the Nest could be any five-roommate party home in Buckman. A pingpong table stands in a garagelike rec-room space, and a pool table is tucked into an upstairs bachelor-pad den that seems made for hanky-panky. All those old Nest regulars from its original Northeast Alberta home now take up residence here, aging comfortably with the bar.
Beech Street Parlor
412 NE Beech St., 946-8184, beechstreetparlor.com.
The last refuge of the Tiga owners, this converted 1906 foursquare house, with its variously decorated rooms, Victorian couches and old-timey portraits on the walls, has all the wonderful warmth of home, with the added perks of 12 taps and infused alcohols, a lovely front porch, and a DJ spinning vinyl beneath the stairs.
4205 N Mississippi Ave., 459-4049, bungalobar.com.
Ah, Bungalo. A weird B&B resort facsimile in the middle of be-condoed Mississippi, the strange Kubrickian plastic in its back porch aside. Pinball in the front, hammocks in the back and dollar PBR at happy hour. It is terribly easy to drive or even walk by, less because it looks like a home than because it looks like a place that should house jewelry. And in its own way, it does. Although, it also sometimes houses the recently matriculated sorority types and serves as the last stop of a bar crawl.