Welcome to Imbibe Magazine's between-issues look at liquid culture with drink recipes, news and more. From coffee to cocktails, Imbibe celebrates your world in a glass.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Feasting Makes You Thirsty: Where to Drink Before, After and In Between Portland's Feast Festivities

Photo: Katie Burnett
As throngs of Feast-goers descend upon Portland, hungry for a taste of Oregon’s bounty, our thoughts naturally turn towards the liquid portion of Portland’s offering. Whether you’re an out-of-towner or a local, if you’re passionate about coffee, cocktails, wine or beer, Portland’s ever-growing scene will keep you busy between tasting panels and parties. Here are some of the spots you won’t want to miss.

Coffee
Opened in 2009, this inner southeast Portland roaster/retailer offers the perfect place to grab your morning coffee before strolling down the nearby Eastside Esplanade, which hugs the east bank of the Willamette river and will offer stunning views of the city in all its bridged glory.

The birthplace of the coffee geek’s BFF, the Kone pourover filter, Coava is a serious coffee haven. Pair one of their excellent cups with a pastry from another local perfectionist, Nuvrei Patisserie, and you’ll be well-fueled for a day of Feasting.

This roastery and café, perpetually cheery and bustling, focuses on lightly roasted coffees from Central America, South America and Africa. It’s also a great spot for Portland people watching, so grab a latte and settle in for some very necessary pre-event downtime.

Yes, it’s hipster central, but it’s also really good, and a Portland classic. And, if you’re staying at the Ace, it’s a no-brainer way to start the day.

A short walk from the Feast goings on, this Pearl district outpost of the northeast Portland espresso temple is an excellent spot for a morning cup.

Cocktails
Right next to the lobby of the Ace Hotel in downtown, and always open late, there’s no excuse to miss having a cocktail at Clyde Common. You’ll find some of the city’s top bar talent mixing and pouring everything from barrel-aged classics to modern originals.

This innovative Pearl District spot is an easy walk from most Feast events and is a must-visit for cocktail geeks. With a plethora of innovative ingredients and recipes always on display, you’ll get a taste of why bartender Daniel Shoemaker and the Teardrop crew are sometimes credited for sparking Portland’s cocktail revolution.

Always a party, from gorgeous flamingo wallpaper to a mind-blowing off-the-menu Mai Tai, the Rum Club is a perennial favorite. Small and cozy, the bar has a welcome lack of pretension that encourages lingering, and yes, the occasional shenanigans. Our after-the-after-party go-to. 

Nestled in a beautiful Portland landmark, this downtown newcomer has an approachable cocktail list and hearty British and Irish pub-inspired bites. Close to the action, it’s a great option for a pre- or post- event happy hour.

Beer
An easy hop across the street from Heart, Migration is a small brewery and pub that has, since opening in 2010, quickly become a local favorite. We’re partial to their Dry Hop, made with Meridian and Amarillo hops, but it’s impossible to go wrong here, so order whatever looks good to you and get a dose of what Portland beer lovers are into these days. 

If you’re up for a bit of a field trip, Breakside, a brewery and taproom, is a worthy destination. Over in the up-and-coming area around Northeast Dekum, Breakside serves great pub food alongside eleven beers on tap, from their classic PNW IPA to their more unusual sour beers, a Passionfruit Sour and even a Grapefruit Chamomile Sour, conditioned with passionfruit and grapefruit peels and chamomile flowers .

With more than 20 constantly changing taps, Bailey’s is a great place to take a quick tour of beers from all over the state without leaving your barstool. Plus, it’s a short walk from a lot of Feast events, so it’s an easy squeeze between a stop at the Grand Tasting and the first party of the night.

Wine
When you’re feeling a little Feasted out, Sauvage is a great refuge. Small and supremely cozy, this wine bar boasts 50 wines by the glass and a focus on biodynamic, organic wines. Candle-lit and quiet, it’s the anti-after party.

Five wineries, one space, one lovely little bar in which to taste the fruits—or juices, in this case—of their labors. Our 2013 Imbibe 75 Wine Bar of the Year, we can’t get enough of these local innovators. It’s a little off the Feast path, but you’ll be handsomely rewarded for making the trip.

Industrial chic and minimalistic, Enso looks every bit the part of an urban winery. Casual and friendly, and just across the river on southeast Stark, it’s a terrific place to have a quick taste of Portland’s urban winemaking scene while staying close to the Feast-related action.