Everything You Absolutely Must Do in Portland This Winter

Published On 11/30/2016 Published On 11/30/2016
Oregon Truffle Festival
Oregon Truffle Festival | John Valls
Bailey's Taproom
Bailey's Exclusive Tasting Room | Nick Rivers
Wednesday - Saturday
Nov 30-Dec 3
When it comes to limited run beers, Bailey’s exclusive tasting room, the Upper Lip, does not mess around. So check your notions of what stouts are at the door and ascend the stairs to some next-level samplings of the darkest, richest beers this side of the Cascades.
Wednesday - Sunday
Nov 30-Dec 4
With a bevy of events touching on topics everywhere from medical cannabis for seniors to beer and weed pairings, Weed Week is all the proof you’d need to conclude that Big Canna is here to stay in Portland.
Wednesday - Friday
Nov 30-4
Holiday ales are more than sugary brews touched up with cloves and cinnamon, but there will be plenty of that and more to go around at this five-day event in Pioneer Square.
North Portland Santacon | Flickr/Mack Male
Thursday - Saturday
Dec 1-31
Every Thursday in December, children (and manchildren) of all ages are welcome to tell Portland’s very own spin on the holiday mall tradition -- complete with manbun, Big Lebowski Pendleton sweater, and a backdrop featuring the former PDX carpet pattern. Portland!
Dec 3
North Portland
Not nearly as rowdy as New York’s iteration, North Portland Santacon is still a perfect excuse to dress like santa and get weird in the Kenton/Denver neighborhood.
Dec 3
Forget what they told you at your shop class safety orientation -- alcohol and woodworking are a perfect pairing, as long as you drink before buying the goods rather than making them.
Tuesday - Sunday
Dec 6-11
Celebrate 18 years of mouth-puckering quaffs at Cascade Brewing, the foremost producer of sour brews in the Northwest, if not the entire country. Classics like honey ginger lime and the kriek will be there, while all manner of funky fusions and one-offs will be available to twist your tongue.
Friday - Sunday
Dec 9-11
Always a mellower option for those tired of the big city grind, this little fest in the plaza outside the former Central Hotel is guaranteed to be big fun for anyone who enjoys quality beer and the small town charm of St. John’s.
Saturday - Sunday
Dec 10-11
The impossibly twee gift shop Crafty Wonderland goes big time by inviting hundreds of local and regional arts and craft heroes to display their wares. If you’ve ever needed an irreverent coffee mug, a pair of socks with the St. John’s bridge on them, or enamel pin of a cartoon fox sipping coffee with his buddy Sasquatch, this is exactly the place to find such items.
Tuesday - Friday
Dec 13-16
Various locations
Celebrate Lompoc’s 20th birthday at each of its five locations with brews made specially for the occasion. Pro tip: Never leave Lompoc without an order of wings.
Dec 16
Whether you’re gluten-free or just a connoisseur of craft cider, EastBurn’s always expertly-curated tap list will have plenty of exciting offerings, ranging from sweet and sour to dry and hoppy and everything else in between.
Dec 31
Why pay your local dive bar $10 for the luxury of just getting in when you can pay $95 for a decked-out night of luxury?
Bourbon & Bacon Festival
Bourbon & Bacon Festival | Courtesy of Bourbon & Bacon Festival
Jan 8
Ride the MAX -- sans pants -- as part of an effort to drum up money and clothing donations for the less fortunate. Be sure to invite the guy you always see pantless on the last blue line train to Gresham every night -- he’d fit right in without even knowing it.
Jan 14
Portland often fancies itself a nation unto its own, but we’re still in America at the end of the day, and there are few things in this world more American than bacon and bourbon. So you should enjoy them together in a science museum as your patriotic duty.
Friday - Sunday
Jan 20-29
Various locations
Kinda like the one time in college you went foraging for mushrooms with the weird guy who ended up on your couch for a summer, only led by actual professionals who are paid to be hip to the truffle game. No chillout tent needed.
Wizard World
Wizard World Comic Con | Courtesy of Wizard World
Thursday - Sunday
Feb 9-26
Various locations
Not all indie films are disjointed mumblecore masterpieces. But if that’s your bag, this is a great place to catch them before they end up going straight to DVD in spite of the splatter of gold palms from exotic fests like Cleveland and Halifax that their jackets will acquire in the process.
Friday - Sunday
Feb 17-19
Geek culture is mainstream now, but that’s not stopping Wizard World Comic Con from pushing the envelope of nerdom as far into the fringe as it can go. Like Portland itself, this is a top notch event outshined only by the giants Comic Cons like New York and San Diego. Get that Pikachu outfit martinized and prepare yourself for weirdness!
Feb 18
Various locations
Like a massive roving open house of every brewery statewide that’s worth a hoot, Zwickelmania is the everyman’s answer to the chin-stroking industry events that are too esoteric for their own good.
Feb 24
Not literally, of course, but the smoothness with which some of Lompoc’s best dark beers on offer at this event go down may requires extra restraint -- these suckers are strong!
Friday - Saturday
Feb 24-25
The quaint town about 40 miles due south or Portland that brings you the region’s best Oktoberfest event can absolutely be counted on for knowing a thing or two about quality sausage even in the many months later. Bring your own puns and a designated driver.