The Hottest Bars in Portland, October 2018

Eater PDX compiled the Portland hotspots to try right now

1. Anchoi Vietnamese Kitchen + Bar

635 SW College St
Portland, OR 97201

(503) 227-0086

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Portland State University students finally have a viable cocktail bar in the form of Vietnamese restaurant Anchoi. The sleek, modern eatery features Vietnamese staples like pho and bánh mì, as well as an array of tropical-themed cocktails designed by Blair Reynolds of the venerable Hale Pele. It’ll soon get a menu revamp, though some drinks will stick around — thankfully, the Indonesian Arrack-spiked daiquiri, a standout on the menu, isn’t going anywhere.

 

2. Vault Cocktail Lounge

226 NW 12th Ave
Portland, OR 97209
(971) 229-1935

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What was once Vault Martini Bar is now Vault Cocktail Lounge after the space was taken over by the team from the Vintage Cocktail Lounge in Montavilla. Gone is the sprawling list of “martini” variations, replaced with a menu resembling the Vintage’s, full of classic cocktails and modern creations; still, the staff is more than happy to try and replicate anything missed from the old menu. The space itself is easily recognizable from before, though with some changes, like a gorgeous backbar set with elaborate metal tiles.

3. Il Solito

627 SW Washington St
Portland, OR 97205
(503) 228-1515

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Ex-Renata chef Matt Sigler’s downtown Italian restaurant, Il Solito, pairs hearty Italian comfort food with what’s essentially a Portland-Italian cocktail menu. Bar manager Bryan Galligos has designed each drink with at least one ingredient straight from the Bel Paese. The renovated restaurant space is as eclectically sourced as the drink menu, with black-and-white murals on one wall, framed photos on another, tiles, and more, which somehow manages to make a cohesive space.

4. Sweet Nothing

4330 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR 97217
(503) 841-8345

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Formerly a colorful little cafe, Sweet Nothing kept the leafy wallpaper and leaned into it hard, landing on a Floridian theme with bright colors, live plants, Cuban food, and playful drinks. The cocktails are rooted in the unorthodox fashion of the ‘80s and ‘90s, but even using ingredients like Midori and Hpnotiq, cocktails are well-balanced and not overly sweet. The space is snug, with seats for only 14 or so, but its position just off of the main Mississippi strip means it’s usually not overcrowded.

5. No Vacancy Lounge

235 SW 1st Ave
Portland, OR 97204

Portland isn’t exactly known as a “clubbing” city, and the clubs we do have aren’t really cocktail destinations, either. Enter No Vacancy, which fills that vacancy by offering moderately priced, well-made drinks (including a stunning daiquiri made with three rums and allspice dram). It’s all served in an art deco/futurist space, with DJs on the weekends and live jazz and swing during the week.

6. Kachinka

720 SE Grand Ave
Portland, OR 97214
(503) 235-0059

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Kachka has vacated the space on Grand for a larger, full service location, leaving little Kachinka in its stead. The space doesn’t look any different, with its narrow hallway seating, Eastern European wallpaper, and rustic wooden tables, but the more casual cocktail-and-snacks vibe fits it well. Grab a Moscow mule and a Russian dog, infused vodka and pelmeni, or any of the other amazing Russian fare here.

7. Keys Lounge

533 NE Killingsworth St
Portland, OR 97211
(503) 719-7409

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Keys Lounge feels a lot like your coolest friend’s basement bar in the 1970s. A spacious room lined with vintage records and vinyl booths, the retro bar boasts a nice patio perfect for warm-ish summer nights. The menu includes a fun tiki selection as well as a “boozy” section of high-proof cocktails, with prices hovering around the $9 mark; stop in for happy hour from 3 to 7 p.m. and again from 11 to close for $5 daiquiris and champagne cocktails.

8. Canard

734 E Burnside St
Portland, OR 97214
(971) 279-2356

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Canard is the third venture from legendary Portland chef and restaurateur Gabriel Rucker and his wine director, Andy Fortgang, next door to their flagship restaurant restaurant Le Pigeon. Stepping into it is like walking into a cafe of the Belle Époque, with a small wrapped marble bartop and an array of high tables, but the food and drinks are anything but old-fashioned. Fortgang has brought in a killer wine list, helpfully detailed with anecdotes about the wines and their makers, while classic cocktails with a modern touch dominate the drink menu. Try the Foie Turn, a cocktail with foie gras washed bourbon, along with the transcendent foie gras dumplings for a truly indulgent experience.

9. Palomar

959 SE Division St
Portland, OR 97214

Owned and operated by Portland bartending icon Ricky Gomez (Teardrop Lounge), Palomar serves a variety of daiquiris, some blended, others not, as well as drinks like an amazing piña colada and a stellar old-fashioned with rum and coconut; plus, each drink can get an absinthe upgrade for just 25 cents. Palomar also continues Portland’s current, welcome trend of vivid, colorful bars (see: Capitol) rather than dark, industrial spots.

10. Deadshot

2133 SE 11th Ave
Portland, OR 97214
(503) 504-9448

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Fans of bartender Adam Robinson’s pop-up cocktail bar Deadshot are likely thrilled that the formerly once-a-week bar is now open seven days a week, 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. In this dark, black-and-gray-accented bar, you can find Robinson’s innovative drinks, like the Diplomatic Prince, a cabbage-infused aquavit drink, or the Who Is Jack Nance, a holdover from the former location with whiskey, sesame, mustard, and sherry that works shockingly well. À la carte bar snacks from Holdfast’s kitchen are there too, including the addictive pig ear nachos with pork confit, Brussels sprouts, and kimchi.

11. Enoteca Nostrana

1401 SE Morrison St ste 105
Portland, OR 97214

(503) 236-7006

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Inspired by the Memphis Group, an Italian design style rooted in modernist aesthetics and strong geometric shapes, Enoteca Nostrana is a bold, stylish space, a two-story bar filled with a massive, double-decker, illuminated wine cabinet. The bar offers a more casual version of Nostrana’s menu, with some basic pasta options, salads, and the like, plus bar snacks that pair well with both wine and cocktails — try the seared albacore tuna tataki with a white or rosé wine for a delectable treat.

12. OK Omens

1758 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Portland, OR 97214
(503) 231-9959

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The most recent in the wave of high-end wine bar openings, OK Omens replaced Cafe Castagna with an upgraded space: Brighter, lighter, and less cavernous, a banquette now takes up the center of the room, offering a more comfortable and casual arena for wines by the glass and bites by James-Beard-nom Justin Woodward. The cocktails here fit the wine theme with vermouth and sherry based drinks, but the real star is the ridiculously affordable and geeky-yet-accessible wines by the glass and bottle.

OK Omens’ wine selection
 Dina Avila/EPDX

13. Blackheart

2411 SE Belmont St
Portland, OR 97214
(503) 954-1541

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Filling the space that was once home to Wild AbandonBlackheart harkens back to the punk rock days of SE Portland, serving breakfast all evening in a laid-back space. A collection of vintage lamps give a soft light to the room full of leather booths, high-backed stools, and clunky mirrors, while tattooed bartenders sling cocktails and cheap drink specials like Jack Daniels and tallboy combos. Eventually it’ll add some karaoke, but for now come in for the affordable drinks, eclectic artwork, and ‘80s New Wave playing on the speakers.

Teote Mezcaleria

14. Teote Mezcaleria

2700 NE Alberta St
Portland, OR 97211

Portland has gone mezcal crazy; we can’t get enough of the smoky, earthy agave spirit. Nowhere is that more evidenced than at Teote Areparia’s new sister bar Teote Mezcaleria, which it says has the largest selection of mezcal on the West Coast. Besides the bounty of mezcals available as shots and flights, the new Teote also offers cocktails, including a surprising amount not made with mezcal, but with rum, bourbon, gin, and everything else expected at a cocktail bar. Like its sister store, the mezcaleria offers a covered, heated patio for an evening cocktail al fresco.

15. The Cavern

4601 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Portland, OR 97215

Joining the historic upper Hawthorne district is Cavern, slipping in like it’s been there for a decade. A cross between an old-school Portland dive and a cocktail lounge, the bar is appropriately named, a dark and cozy watering hole with a focus on whiskey and other dark spirits. Bar stools and a few booths are the only seats available, so don’t bring a huge party.

Posted on October 12, 2018 at 7:48 am
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International Pizza Consultant: Portland is ‘America’s greatest pizza city’

By Michael Russell | The Oregonian | Posted September 17, 2018 at 09:39 AM

Posted on September 17, 2018 at 9:16 pm
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New Music Venue to Open in the Pearl

River Pig’s Ramzy Hattar is planning to open an 8,000 sq. ft. music lounge in the old Oba space. Hattar is planning to invite famous chefs to utilize the expansive kitchen. For more information click here.

Posted on March 23, 2018 at 8:32 am
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SuperBite Replacement Bistor Agnes Now has an Opening Date

Greg Denton and Gabrielle Quiñonez Denton
Dina Avila/EPDX

Bistro Agnes, the much-anticipated French restaurant from James Beard Award-winning duo Greg Denton and Gabrielle Quiñonez Denton, is set to throw open its West End doors tonight.

As reported by PoMo, the chef-owners (best known for Ox) have confirmed Thursday January 18 as the opening date for the Parisian bistro, which is set to take over the pair’s previous restaurantin the same space as the small plates oriented SuperBite, which they shuttered at the end of December.

PoMo also teases the menu for Agnes, which leans heavily into “old-school French comfort food”, in Denton’s words. Items like cassoulet, steak-frites, tartare, and profiteroles scream French classicism, although it’s not all oh-là-là-tellement-français — there looks to be some hybrid items, such as a cheeseburger, albeit one with truffled Bordelaise sauce.

Bistro Agnes will start out as a dinner-only establishment, open seven nights, with lunch slated to be added after opening.

Posted on January 19, 2018 at 8:12 am
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Three Things to do This Weekend

  1. Visit Ladybug Chocolates in Canby to satisfy your sweet tooth
  2. Sip Champagne at Ambonnay Bar & Cellar on SE Washington
  3. Try any of PDX Eater’s ‘Hottest Restaurants of October 2017
Posted on October 13, 2017 at 8:14 pm
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6 Reasons to Consider Wallpaper in Your Design

Posted on August 3, 2017 at 8:24 pm
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Portland Dining News

Food & Wine recently named one of Portland’s new restaurants to it’s list of 2017 restaurants of the year. To find out what hotspot made the list, click here.

Posted on May 19, 2017 at 6:26 am
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Carina Lounge | Coming Soon to NW Portland

Posted on March 31, 2017 at 8:59 pm
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March is Portland Dining Month

 

We are about half way through the month of March, which is Portland’s Dining Month.

What restaurants have you been to already?

Where to next?

Posted on March 17, 2017 at 8:49 pm
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Where to Score the Best Three Course Deals During Portland Dining Month

More than 120 restaurants are game for this year’s Portland Dining Month: a three-course, $29 meal, offering bargains at some of the priciest steakhouses and modernist stages in town. The best Dining Month deals do more than just cobble together existing, low-priced dishes, shrink the portions, or tack a cookie onto the end to qualify as “multi-course.” Instead, they get creative—using lesser-known cuts and fresh techniques. Beet salads and vanilla panna cotta? Not so much. Beef tongue Spam musubi with cucumber and Chinese hot mustard? Yes, please. Check out our best bets for the month of March.

Ataula
First course: Pulpo (Spanish octopus) carpaccio, olive, pistachio, sun-dried tomatoes, pimiento and parmesan

Second course: Chorizo-dog with Spanish Chistorra chorizo, smoked honey mustard

Third course: Vegetable rossejat with toasted noodles, mushrooms and seasonal vegetables in a Romesco sauce

To view the rest of Portland Monthly’s picks click here.

Posted on March 3, 2017 at 8:25 am
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