People in Portland love drinking (of course they do... Stumptown's one of the 11 best imbibing cities in America), but you know what's even better than drinking? Doing it outdoors, obviously. So, inspired by our sudden bout of sunshine, we took on the oh-so-odious task of picking PDX's 11 best outdoor drinking destinations. Drink 'em all in...
Of course one of the city’s busiest bars has a cavernous back patio with dozens of picnic tables, a fire pit, and ping pong. It doesn’t matter what the weather’s like, Rontoms is sure to be packed every night of the week. But isn’t that why you go there?
When you first get to Paymaster around happy hour and see that the line of people at the bar easily dwarfs the number of available tables and bar stools it’s easy to become apprehensive. But the line moves quickly and you’ll notice most patrons slip around a dark corner. After getting your beer go around the dark corner and emerge in one of the city’s best covered patios. There’s even a pool table!
This Scottish-style pub tucked away on the rapidly developing NE Broadway not only has some of the best Scotch eggs, but it also has a hidden back deck that somehow manages to catch every angle of the sun. It's one of Portland’s best places to day drink because you get all of the outdoor fun without anyone seeing how much you’ve consumed before 1pm.
This little blue collar brewery on Mississippi quietly took over for Amnesia and quickly set itself apart by embracing the laid-back neighborhood vibe. It’s one of our favorite taprooms not only because it also has a generous whiskey selection, but also because of the way its turned the patio into a multifaceted drinking destination with some covered tables and an enclosed projector room.
Not only is Prost! one of our favorite German biergartens, but it also doubles as the alcohol provider for one of our favorite food carts. This means you can drink out of a boot, catch the game, AND pick from a variety of food options that run the gamut from vegan barbecue to Detroit deep-dish.
If you’ve already got a lock on some of the city’s best tacos (and tamales, duh) what else are you going to do? Build a restaurant with a kickass kid and dog friendly patio! And with umbrellas that're large enough to work double duty, there’s never not a good time to have a margarita outside.
Until the rumored rooftops of other projects open, Noble Rot remains the Eastside’s only rooftop bar. And it does it in style with a killer view of Downtown and the West Hills, a nice garden that the restaurant utilizes, and pretty girls who know a helluva lot more about wine than you do.
Depending on how you look at it, the best or worst part about A Roadside Attraction is that you have to tend to the fire pit. This seemingly innocuous task turns grown men into Portland lumberjacks as they passive aggressively stoke the flames. Good thing there’s plenty of local suds to enjoy as you vie for the title of Firemaster.
What can we say about Departure that we haven’t already said? The food’s great, the chef’s on fire, and that panoramic view of downtown is unrivaled. Sure it gets a little busy on these gorgeous days, but you couldn’t ask for a more beautiful group of people to ignore you while pretending no one notices you staring from behind those sunglasses.
Unseating the previous champion by combining buttery corn cakes, slow-cooked meats, and cheap micheladas with a surprisingly large outdoor bar and patio; stepping out from the second story of a house on the edge of Ladd’s Addition into this little gem is like going on vacation in Venezuela. Probably.
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1. Rontoms600 E Burnside St, Portland
2. Paymaster1020 NW 17th Ave, Portland
3. Rose & Thistle2314 NE Broadway St, Portland
4. StormBreaker Brewing832 N Beech St, Portland
5. North 45 Pub517 NW 21st Ave, Portland
6. Prost4237 N Mississippi Ave, Portland
7. Tamale Boy1764 Northeast Dekum Street, Portland
8. Noble Rot1111 E Burnside St, Portland
9. Roadside Attraction1000 SE 12th Ave, Portland
10. Departure Restaurant & Lounge525 SW Morrison St, Portland
11. Teote1615 SE 12th Ave, Portland
A covered patio and fire pit bring a cabin-like ambiance to this event venue and bar in East Portland. The rustic and cavernous space is decked out with mid-century modern touches, but peep the outside patio area: you have two (count 'em!) options for wine-ing and lounging. One is covered, has a bar, and serves as a music venue during the summer, and the other is a sprawling wooden deck filled with bamboo.
When you first get to Paymaster around happy hour and see that the line of people at the bar easily dwarfs the number of available tables and bar stools it’s easy to become apprehensive. But the line moves quickly and you’ll notice most patrons slip around a dark corner. After getting your beer go around the dark corner and emerge in one of the city’s best back patio, complete with covering, fans, heaters, and misters, as well as a pool table and other games.
Rose & Thistle is a Scottish-style pub tucked away in NE Portland, with a secret patio that you can enjoy while sipping on authentic drafts.
This newish brewpub took is serving some dark and tasty seasonal suds, also, there’s a full menu of “Stormburgers,” sandwiches, and share plates to be enjoyed out by the fit pit.
Everything about North 45 takes its cues from international travel, up to and including its name (a reference to the resto's location on the 45th parallel). Perhaps most famously, the Conquistador makes Spanish coffee a bit more... well, Spanish, thanks to some Gran Gala, Kahlúa, 151, coffee, a flamed cinnamon-nutmeg sugared rim, and whipped cream. It's also got one of the best patios in NW Portland, with a small interior that belies the larger backyard, and a cozy back patio with a TV for Timbers games, and its own bar, so you won’t miss a moment.
This German biergarten and restaurant on Mississippi offers an authentic Teutonic experience, with its braunschweiger (pâté), Bavarian pretzel, and wurst sampler. Portland’s best bar for German biers is also one of the best bars for outdoor drinking, especially if you’re looking to enjoy a liter of lager without the confines of a ceiling. This dog-friendly patio has an outdoor bar, perfect for any occasion.
With colorful murals and an outdoor patio, this food truck-turned-brick-and-mortar spot is slinging some sweet tamales in NE.
Offering scenic views of Portland, Noble Rot's a wine bar with a serious vino menu (they've got 300+ bottles in stock from small wineries in the Pacific Northwest and across Europe). Noble Rot's always topping out best of Portland lists, and for good reason; It's a solid date spot with great happy hour specials, and awesome dinner menu, and a great rooftop bar.
The front yard of Roadside Attraction feels like a Secret Garden, as most the tables are covered by low-hanging vegetation, and it’s almost entirely blocked off from the street. It’s an iconic Portland location: rustic, quirky, dark, and frustratingly cash only. But what more do you expect from a beer bar attached to a thrift shop?
Located in the Nines Hotel, The Departure serves authentic pan-Asian cuisine -- such as sushi, dim sum, and kushiyaki, along with vegan and gluten-free items-- and creative cocktails in a scenic, double balconied setting with a great outdoor seating area and sweeping views of downtown PDX. Try the Tasho Macho, the venue's longest-surviving drink, which is an Asian fusion take on the Moscow mule.
A fun and festive late-night spot and casual eatery, the Eastside's Teote is a super-authentic Latin American spot that serves up tasty street fare and grilled meat entrees alongside mezcal cocktails and cervezas aplenty. Known for their crave-worthy arepas, tossed with jalapenos, cheddar, and haberno lime crema, they're so good, you won't even mind that they're gluten free. Teote's semi-hidden upstairs bar area on the top floor, with its own bar area and fire pit, is a great summertime lounging locale.