Portland's Best New Bars of 2017 (So Far)

by Alexander Frane on Apr 25, 2017 in Roundups

So far, 2017 hasn’t seen the myriad restaurant openings (or closings) that 2016 did, but there are a few new spots that have opened since the new year. There will surely be plenty more in the coming months, but for now, here are our four favorite new bars this year. Let us know what where you’ve been visiting or what you’re looking forward to at our Facebook or Twitter.

Nightcap
Trinket has been a popular brunch spot for three years now, but the space, located in a sleepy strip of Cesar Chavez between Hawthorne and Division, was always closed in the evenings. Now it’s home to a “sister establishment,” Nightcap. Originally intended as a dessert and cocktail spot, customer feedback—as well as OLCC regulations—led to a small menu of savory dishes, including pasta and a burger. Still, the focus is on the lush cocktails and delectable sweets, mainly in the form of rich pies. It’s a perfect spot for a second date or anniversary dinner, especially with a Sleeping Beauty in front of you. With Clear Creek Pear Brandy, Carpano Antica sweet vermouth, and Cia Ciaro Amaro, it’s like a silky negroni with ripe pear on the finish. Remarkably, none of the drinks are priced above $10, and most are in the single digits, a price point that is getting rarer and rarer in this city. (2035 SE Cesar E Chavez Blvd.; 503-360-2293)

No Bones Beach Club
Portland can’t have too many tiki bars, and while No Bones Beach Club doesn’t sell itself as such, it’s hard to call it anything else. After all, you can find Mai Tais, Junglebirds, and Painkillers on the menu. What you won’t find on the menu, however, is anything from an animal: No Bones lives up to its name by being entirely vegan. The drinks are on the sweeter side, especially to those that are used to Hale Pele’s balanced tiki drinks, and purists will balk at the inclusion of pineapple and orange juice in a mai tai, but they’re solid. The staff is genuinely friendly and welcoming, and the food is good enough that even your most carnivorous friends won’t be missing much. All in all, it’s a welcome addition to the Mississippi neighborhood, a neighborhood that was lacking a good tiki, or “beach,” bar. (3928 N Mississippi Ave.)
 
AC Hotel
It’s a Marriott bar, and a few years ago that would have meant little more than vodka martinis and domestic lagers. But it’s 2017, and it’s an AC Hotel, which means Spanish style and a decent supply of sherry. But more, it’s a Portland bar—the staff did their research, the manager having lived in Portland for a while before the bar opened, and realized that in order to fit in, they would need to embrace the local spirit (and spirits). Portlanders may still find it a bit corporate, but that also means consistent, high quality service. And while the bar is required to serve specific drinks, including two different gin and tonics, it’s pushing back a bit and bringing in some Portland creativity, as well as local brands like Aviation Gin and Thomas & Sons products. It’s a great place for hotel guests to stop in for a drink before going to dinner, and locals will likely enjoy visiting as well. (888 SW 3rd Ave.; 503-223-2100)
 
 
Jackrabbit
JackRabbit is the first restaurant from celebrity chef Chris Cosentino outside of California, and and has been drawing crowds since its opening in March. The menu is meat heavy, with options like a pig head or a rabbit cooked with, seriously, 80 cloves of garlic. Even the cauliflower is cooked in duck fat, so this is not a vegetarian friendly establishment. While there are plenty of great whiskey bars in town, as well as a few good rum bars, Jackrabbit might be Portland’s first dedicated gin bar; it’s reportedly Cosentino’s favorite spirit. A wide range of local and imported gins line the shelves of the bar, and many of the drinks utilize it, including the Instagrammable Coin Toss, a drink served in an entire grapefruit shell.— that is if you ask for gin, or if you flip the right side of the coin for it; otherwise you’ll end up with tequila. (830 SW 6th Ave.; 503-412-1800)

Photos via Alexander Frane 

Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
Drink Rogue Beer This Summer to Raise Money for College Students

Drink Rogue Beer This Summer to Raise Money for College Students

Rogue Ales & Spirits announced the release of the Hot Tub Scholarship Lager this week, which proceeds benefits the Jack Joyce Scholarship Fund....read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio May 23, 2017
Lompoc Brewery Hosts Kung-Fu and IPA Night

Lompoc Brewery Hosts Kung-Fu and IPA Night

This Thursday, May 22 at 4 PM and 7 PM, Lompoc Brewery will be releasing six new IPAs at Sidebar on North Williams. In addition, guests will be treate...read more ›

by Alexander Frane May 22, 2017
Thu
May 25
Sidebar on North Williams 
Thu
May 25
Sidebar on North Williams 
SPONSORED
Rejoice: Burger King is Now Serving Booze

Rejoice: Burger King is Now Serving Booze

A Whopper and fries (along with some cheap chicken nuggets) makes a great post-drunk fill-up, but now thanks to the geniuses at the Burger King corpor...read more ›

by Ryan Hudak May 19, 2017
You Can Now Visit an Inflatable Version of Moe's Tavern from 'The Simpsons'

You Can Now Visit an Inflatable Version of Moe's Tavern from 'The Simpsons'

Have you ever wanted to visit the iconic Moe's Tavern from The Simpsons? Well, unless you live in Eugene, OR, ...read more ›

by Alexander Frane May 19, 2017
Portland Bartenders Compete for Most Imaginative Bartender Title

Portland Bartenders Compete for Most Imaginative Bartender Title

The United States Bartending Guild is holding the regionals for its annual Most Imaginative Bartender Competition, hosted by Bombay Sapphire, on Monda...read more ›

by Alexander Frane May 19, 2017
Eric Wareheim of 'Master of None' & 'Tim and Eric' Is the Latest Celebrity to Release a Wine

Eric Wareheim of 'Master of None' & 'Tim and Eric' Is the Latest Celebrity to Release a Wine

Plenty of celebrities are releasing wine these days, and Eric Wareheim, famous for both Master of None and Tim...read more ›

by The Drink Nation May 17, 2017
A Booze-Infused Ice Cream Shop Just Opened in NYC

A Booze-Infused Ice Cream Shop Just Opened in NYC

Ah, the Big Apple, always providing the rest of the country with great art, culture, theater and now-perhaps the best innovation to date-the ice cream...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio May 17, 2017
A 100-Year-Old British Man Won Beer For Life

A 100-Year-Old British Man Won Beer For Life

A landlord at a Manchester pub promised a then 92-year-old Arthur Johnson, about eight years ago, that when he turned 100 he'd be entitled to free bee...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio May 17, 2017
Lagunitas Sells Second Half of Stake to Heineken

Lagunitas Sells Second Half of Stake to Heineken

Lagunitas Brewing has announced that it will be selling the last 50% of its stake to Heineken International, The Chicago Tribune reports. ...read more ›

by Alexander Frane May 17, 2017
SPONSORED
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close