LABrewatory

This week’s hot spot is the fun and experimental brewery LABrewatory! I stopped in while I was out and about in the neighborhood and found so many great beer options it was hard to choose just one.

This brewery specializes in experimental beers and collaborations. What that means is you will find a wide variety of styles and something to satisfy every palette. The bartenders are exceptionally friendly and are happy to walk you through all the beers on tap as you try to decide what you want to quench your thirst with.

As an added bonus to visiting LABrewatory, you get to eat at Tamale Boy! they have great tacos, seasonal offerings and happy hour! Make sure to swing by and try something new!

  • Labrewatory
    • 670 N Russell St
    • 7 days a week 7am -10pm

Do you have somewhere you want us to check out? Let us know in the comments!

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Keys Lounge

This week for our featured hot spot we went to Keys Lounge in NE Portland. We have been really wanting to try the cocktails here because their Instagram game is on point. I am happy to report that we finally made it and we were not disappointed!

They have some wines, a decent tap list, and a great mix of cocktails. I tried the Bootsy Collins which is vodka, lemon, soda, and a splash of Lillet Rouge. It was perfectly refreshing for a hot summer evening. We didn’t try any of the food but the menu looks to be perfectly Portland. They have all the bar staples like popcorn and fries, and burgers. They also have some fun twists like pork belly bites and vegan “calamari”. Whether you are a meat eater, vegetarian, or a vegan you will find lots of options on this menu.

One of my favorite things about this visit was the numerous places to sit! There is a huge wrap around bar with stools both inside and outside, a cute patio with a decent amount of tables, booths surrounded by old records, and a back lounge where they were showing the game.

The building is a old locksmith building from the 60’s and still features the giant KEYS sign out front. The building had been abandoned and run down for many years. It has now been returned to it’s full potential and is ready for your patronage!

Be sure to check this place out and let us know what you think!

Do you have a place that you want us to feature? Let us know in the comments!

Palomar

This week we went and checked out the cuban cocktail bar Palomar! We must be feeling a sunny theme with all the rain we have ben having as this is our second decidedly “Miami” themed location. The decor is pink and teal and certainly makes you wish you were sitting on the beach in Miami drinking one of their fabulous daiquiris!

They feature a rotating flavor of frozen daiquiri everyday, and this isn’t your mama’s frozen cocktail. It’s just boozy enough so you know it has good rum in it, but just sweet enough to be sure you keep on sipping. They also have an extensive bar and many cocktails that stray away from rum.

They sell delicious empanadas, plantains, and a variety of other cuban food staples. The servers and bartenders are all warm, friendly, and go out of their way to make sure you are satisfied! I highly recommend checking this place out I promise you will not be disappointed! If you want to check out the menu, click here

Do you have somewhere you think we need to check out? Tell us in the comments!

Wayfinder

There are so many wonderful things to say about this Eastside industrial district brewery and restaurant!

They have one of the largest patios in town, and as long as the weather is nice (or nice to us Portlanders) they are serving on it. They have the best German style lagers in Portland (this is a fact, not my opinion), and superb pub food. They make a beer cheese sauce that can be found on many items on the menu, best of which is the Black Lodge, their own twist on a Philly cheesesteak. They also have buffalo fried cauliflower, steak fries, and a niçoise salad, all of which are worth trying. They also have lots of vegan food options if you have a restrictive diet.

If you aren’t in the mood to eat, don’t worry, they have plenty of beer! The beer here isn’t just good, it is well thought-out, well-executed, and delicious. Wayfinder was the brain child of the co-founder of Double Mountain, the co-founder of Sizzle Pie, and the co-founder of Podnah’s Pit Barbecue so you know you are in for a treat. If you don’t want to take my word for it, they won best new brewery, best new brewer, and best brewpub in 2018 at the Oregon Beer Awards.

If for some reason you end up here and don’t want to try the beer, they do have some great cocktails and glasses of wine. Definitely take a trip to the East industrial district for this awesome brewery, and let me know what you end up ordering!

  • Wayfinder Beer
    • 304 SE 2nd Ave.
    • Minors welcome until 8pm

Do you have a place you think we need to check out? Post it in the comments!

Breweries

Breweries

April 7th is National Beer Day so of course we are focusing on beer!

There are so many breweries in Portland it can be hard to decide which ones to go visit. Let me do the hard work for you and suggest some of my favorites. My husband is pretty big beer snob so I have done a lot of footwork on this subject. Here are my top 5 in no specific order! 

  • Wayfinder – 304 SE 2nd ave. – They have an epic patio, great food, and a really nice variety of beer styles. My favorite is their Helles, its light, super drinkable, and refreshing! 
  • Baerlic – 2235 Se 11th ave. – This brewery has lots of great beer, and they do some fun experimental ones throughout the year. My current favorite is the fruit fight, a sour fruit ale that is to die for! 
  • Little Beast – 3412 SE Division st. – This house turned brewery is a super fun place to get a sip and snacks. The specialize in farmhouse ales, so if you like slightly sour, or brett beers, this place is sure to wow. They also have an awesome lawn you can sit on! My favorite is the Fera, it’s a saison with brettanomyces and they have malts and hops just right! 
  • Breakside – multiple locations – These guys make great beer, plain and simple. I don’t like IPA, but I like theirs! They are known for making flavorful beers and for experimenting with some pretty wacky flavors. My favorite here is the Breakside Pilsner, but really you can’t go wrong with any of them. 
  • Ruse – 4784 se 17th ave. – This new brewery deserves your attention. They have a super cool space in an old firehouse and way more taps than you would expect from a new brewery. I have tried 8 of their beers and I loved them all. They also specialize in farmhouse ales, but if you aren’t into sour, they will have something for you too. My favorite so far was “the room in blue” A gose with blueberries! 

I am sure that you can tell from the list, we really like farmhouse ales, but all these options have a little bit of everything. Please let me know which places you went to visit and what you thought! If I missed your favorite, let me know what it is!

Revelry

We at That Portland Life finally had the chance to check out buzzy Korean street food spot Revelry to celebrate Jessica’s birthday. Immediately upon entering, I could see where the reputation for hipness comes from. Between the wall of retro boomboxes, the graffiti stlye art, and the exposed industrial beams, this place feels like a cool, underground locale that could be in any city in the world.

We started, of course with a round of cocktails, my favorite of which was called Dear Mama, a bright and well-balanced combination of gin, green chartreuse, celery bitters, and Thai basil. The savory herbal notes were perfectly complemented by just the right amount of citrus, and the bitterness of the chartreuse was offset by just a touch of sweet. Another surprising delight was the Somaek, a create- your-own concoction of Soju and Hite beer that I didn’t anticipate enjoying and then found myself happily ordering a second.

One of my favorite things about dining as a large party is that we got to order almost every single menu item, and share it all family-style. The Moo Shu pork dumplings were an immediate favorite, done Rockefeller style with a rich buttery sauce that I wanted to pour over every bite of food that I had in front of me. The scallop fried rice was delicious and impressive in the way that somehow the rice itself, perfectly seasoned and dotted with pan-crisped edges, was the star of the dish rather than the bay scallops as one might expect.

The fried chicken lives up to the hype even better than I had hoped, crunchy and saucy, spicy and sweet, and still so tender that no utensils are necessary. Don’t miss out on the Dan Dan noodles as well- amazing housemade noodles, with crispy spiced pork sausage and tender greens- a dish that many at our table were fighting for down to the very last scraps.

The name Reverly is certainly apropos, as I felt like the vibe was ideal for our raucous, boozy, celebration crowd. Maybe not the best place for a quiet date night or to take your great-uncle from Topeka, but an absolute delight for festivities with friends.

If you have anywhere you think we need to try, let us know in the comments!

Cheese Bar

This week’s hot spot is a Portland staple. If you have lived here for any amount of time you have definitely heard of Steve’s Cheese. Well, this is the home of it! Cheese and wine are certainly 2 of my favorite things, so give me a place to enjoy them side by side and I will be there frequently!

Located on 61st and Se Belmont you can stop in and pick up some cheese to go, or sit in and have lunch or a snack. They have a rotating selection of about 200 cheeses both made locally and from around the world. The employees are very friendly and knowledgeable and they will make sure that you make the best possible cheese choice!

If you do decide to dine in they have numerous boards you can choose from, some with all cheese, some with all meat, and some with a lovely mix. We tried the Buddy-up Board which had 2 meats, 2 cheese, and lots of accompaniments. If you are looking for something more substantial, they also have salads, sandwiches, desserts! I highly recommend the seasonal salad with smoked trout in a scrumptious blue cheese dressing. They really focus on putting together a thoughtful menu with locally sourced ingredients and the flavor of the fresh food really shines.

Along with the fabulous food, they have a great selection of wine, beer and cider. They do their best to stick with local makers here also, but because they want the menu to specifically pair with the cheeses, you can often find some delicious foreign wines.

Be sure to check this plate out and let me know what you loved!

Do you know someone that might like to be featured here? Send me a message and I would love to check it out!!