Drink like you’re in Hawaii
For how heavy-handed the Tiki chic of this Irvington bar comes off, Hale Pele asks very little of its customers in return for a total departure from the drizzly chaos going on just outside its windows. Just order an unbelievably strong drink -- preferably the 151 Swizzle or Corpse Reviver -- and suspend disbelief as an imaginary volcano explodes on the sound system throughout the evening. Watching people avoid lighting their hair on fire when their drink comes out with flames leaping from it is always incredible, and being able to do so from an elaborately crafted replica of the kind of place you’d only find on an overpriced Sandals vacation that happens to be right down the street is even better.
Warm up at the Holiday Ale Fest
While this seasonal beer fest is technically outside, the massive tent Holiday Ale Fest organizers drape over Pioneer Courthouse Square helps the event strike that perfect balance of being outside in Oregon in the winter. As long as you’re warm and dry and equipped with one of the 50+ winter ales on offer, it’s easy to remember that although we kvetch endlessly about the seemingly endless rain and sadness that defines our months of “not summer” here in Portland, it’s still a lot better than where you came from. If you can’t be thankful of that, perhaps it’s time to move on and help with the colonization of Detroit.
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Pete Cottell is a writer at Thrillist. He refuses to join a climbing gym to meet girls because he thinks woodworking is far sexier. He did not lose any fingers while building the desk he used to write this article. Follow him to year-round sunshine and happiness at @vanifestdestiny.