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The 12 Best Pubs in Portland and What Makes Them So Darn Good

The 12 Best Pubs in Portland and What Makes Them So Darn Good

Do you know what’s better than beer on a hot afternoon? A cold beer on a hot afternoon!

I’m guilty of this – I love a good drink (I mean that responsibly, kids!). So, if you want to find the best pubs in Portland, I’m really the guy you have to call!

Here are some of my favorite spots (and a few that our other team members insisted on having here) that you have to check out.

Kells Brew Pub


Address: 210 NW 21st Ave, Portland, OR 97209, United States

Contact details: +1 503-719-7175

Operating hours: Monday: 12:00 PM – 9:00 PM | Tuesday – Wednesday: 12:00 PM – 10:00 PM | Thursday: 12:00 PM – 11:00 PM | Friday: 12:00 PM – 12:30 AM | Saturday: 11:00 AM – 12:30 AM | Sunday: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM

Price: $$

Whenever I want that classic pub vibe, I hit Kells Brew Pub, no doubt. This downtown gem attracts folks of all ages, thanks to its tasty Irish grub and drinks with a Pacific Northwest twist. 

We’re talking Irish stew, shepherd’s pie (seriously, you have to try it with their Irish drinks!), and a killer selection of single-malt scotch and Irish whiskey.

Personally, the nightly shows featuring traditional Irish music are my favorite. The vibrant energy just gives more excitement against the place’s laid-back charm. 

Now for those who enjoy a cigar with their pint, Kells provides a separate cigar lounge with dedicated ventilation. I recommend you use it, as the spot can get filled during busy evening hours,

And on weekends, Kells tends to draw even larger crowds. But surprisingly, the happy hour (4:00 to 5:00 PM) remains relatively low-key. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit during this time for both a less crowded atmosphere and fantastic deals!

McMenamins Ringlers Pub

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Address: 1332 W Burnside St, Portland, OR 97209, United States

Contact details: +1 503-225-0627

Operating hours: Monday – Thursday: 3:00 PM – 10:00 PM | Friday – Saturday: 11:00 AM – 12:00 AM | Sunday: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM

Price: $$$

A fantastic spot to hang out with friends any day of the week, McMenamins Ringlers Pub is a destination for live music enthusiasts. And that’s why it’s no surprise that this pub draws a sizable crowd for the upstairs shows.

The spacious venue features quirky decor and serves up microbrews from the on-site Crystal Ballroom Brewery. There’s also a great selection of potent cocktails. Some I like, some not so much, but hey – the range is still top-notch.

If you’re looking for entertainment beyond the music, there are pool tables and pinball machines. Honestly though, with all the activity and lively conversation, you might not even need them.

Their food menu is pretty diverse too, offering all the classics like burgers, pizza, and fish and chips, along with some smaller dishes inspired by different cultures around the world.

The pub stays open late enough on weekends to satisfy those post-show hunger pangs, making it the perfect spot for a lively night out. Trust me, it’s worth checking out if you’re up for a weekend filled with fun.

The Xport Rooftop Lounge


Address: 1355 SW 2nd Ave, Portland, OR 97201, United States

Contact details: +1 503-306-4835

Operating hours: Sunday – Thursday: 4:30 PM – 11:00 PM | Friday – Sunday: 4:30 PM – 12:00 AM

Price: $$

If you’re into sipping drinks while soaking in stunning city views, Xport is your spot. Perched on the 16th floor of the Porter Hotel, Xport offers panoramic vistas of Portland, including its iconic bridges and majestic mountains.

When it’s a bit chilly, grab a seat by the fire and cozy up with one of their fancy cocktails, like Cinderella’s Big Score. It’s packed with dark rum, banana liqueur, Aperol, and a bunch of other delicious ingredients.

While the bar menu may be somewhat limited, every item is a winner, particularly the chicken tinga tacos. Plus, you don’t want to miss out on other delectable bites like crab tots and chickpea fries.

But for seafood enthusiasts, it’s the raw bar that will make them feel like they are in paradise. There’s an enticing array of oysters, Lomi Lomi, prawns, Dungeness crab, tuna poke, caviar, and more.

Here’s a tip for those watching their wallets: simply opt for something from their brewed menu. Best bang for your buck.

What’s on offer? Choices like Budweiser, Bud Light, Good Life Lager, Sunriver Pale Ale, and plenty more – all priced at under $10!

Ecliptic Brewing


Address: 825 N Cook St, Portland, OR 97227, United States

Contact details: +1 503-265-8002

Operating hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Sunday: 12:00 PM – 8:00 PM | Thursday – Saturday: 12:00 PM – 9:00 PM

Price: $$

What makes Ecliptic Brewing stand out from other pubs in Portland isn’t just its cool astronomy theme or its massive patio – it’s the food menu that really steals the show. 

I’m in love with their well-crafted Phaser Hazy IPA and the tangy Carina Peach Sour. Personal runner-ups include exceptional dishes such as broiled oysters with bacon and shrimp bechamel and pan-roasted chicken in hot and sour egg drop soup.

But let’s not forget the brews – after all, what’s a great pub without a stellar selection of beers? 

Regulars (guilty) might be familiar with flagship beers like the Ecliptic Starburst IPA bursting with juicy citrus flavors, or the smooth and roasty Capella Porter. 

But for those seeking something different, experimental brews are worth a try, though they’re limited and may not always be available.

Hey Love

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Address: 920 E Burnside St, Portland, OR 97214, United States

Contact details: +1 503-206-6223

Operating hours: Monday – Thursday: 3:00 PM – 12:00 AM | Friday: 3:00 PM – 1:00 AM | Saturday: 10:00 AM – 1:00 AM | Sunday: 10:00 AM – 12:00 AM

Price: $$

Hey Love is a cool spot that doesn’t feel like one of those intimidating “must-visit” bars you usually see in lists of where to go when in Portland. It has this modern, tropical vibe with lots of plants and local art.

Whether you’re just dropping in for a casual drink on a Tuesday or planning a big night out, make sure you try one of their tropical drinks. Their cocktail menu is a delight, featuring creations like the Secret Life of Plants and a Salty Mango Oolong Mai Tai. My fave is the Pink Feather made with bourbon, guava, macadamia orgeat, lemon, and coconut salt spray. 

Beer enthusiasts will also find something to love on their menu, with a selection of draft beers including a delicious IPA from Double Mountain Brewery in Hood River (one of Oregon’s finest breweries). 



Address: 65 SW Yamhill St, Portland, OR 97204, United States

Contact details: +1 503-224-5626

Operating hours: Monday – Thursday: 11:00 AM – 12:00 AM | Friday – Saturday: 11:00 AM – 2:30 AM | Sunday: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM

Price: $$

As the oldest Irish bar in Portland, Paddy’s surely ticks all the boxes when it comes to the best pubs in town. 

They embody the true essence of a classic Irish pub: a warm atmosphere, lively camaraderie (known as “the craic”), hearty food, and, of course, a stellar selection of beers – with Guinness taking the spotlight.

Speaking of which, Paddy boasts a massive selection of spirits – the bar’s back wall reaches to the ceiling, stocked with over 600 varieties of liquor! On tap, you’ll find staples like, as mentioned, Guinness, Harp, Smithwick’s, and Magners cider.

Moreover, their menu is packed with Irish favorites like bangers and mash, “Irish poutine” (fries with cheese curds, corned beef, and onion gravy), and a crème brûlée made with Baileys Irish Cream.

For the ultimate Irish pub experience, hit up Paddy’s during their annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival. It’s a wild time with live bands, Irish dancers, bagpipers, and whiskey tastings happening right outside the pub.

Mazama Brewing


Address: 955 NE Orenco Station Loop, Hillsboro, OR 97124, United States

Contact details: +1 503-352-4150

Operating hours: Wednesday – Thursday: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM | Friday: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM | Saturday: 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM | Sunday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM

Price: $$

Another gem in the lineup is Mazama Brewing, situated in the trendy Orenco Station shopping complex. Like other brewpubs, you’d expect it to be bright, clean, and flooded with natural light. 

Plus, their killer brunch menu can compete with the best in town! You can start off with complimentary warm doughnuts sprinkled with sugar, then dive into dishes like fried chicken eggs Benedict or squash-and-duck chorizo hash. 

These brunch delights pair perfectly with their “beermosas.” Pro tip: try swapping the orange juice for Mazama’s sour ale or their Mazama saison – they’re both winners, in my opinion. 

Oh, and the prices are very reasonable compared to other breakfast spots nearby. Who doesn’t like that?

Golden Valley Brewery


Address: 1520 NW Bethany Blvd, Beaverton, OR 97006, United States

Contact details: +1 503-972-1599

Operating hours: Sunday – Thursday: 11:30 AM – 9:00 PM | Friday – Saturday: 11:30 AM – 10:00 PM

Price: $$

Golden Valley Brewery in McMinnville has been a local favorite since 2012, especially for a fun night out. One good reason is that they boast a huge dining room that accommodates 200 people and a sunny patio that fits another 85  – you won’t be short of spots to sit!

Even though it has more of a restaurant feel than a typical pub, the place has been perfecting its brews for over 25 years under brewmaster Piper Gladwill. 

The food served here is another big draw, with generous portions that won’t disappoint. Take for example the cider-brined pork schnitzel, smothered in lemon caper brown butter and accompanied by kolsch-braised cabbage and confit fingerling potatoes. 

Wash it down with the Carlton Kolsch or the gold medal-winning Beaverton Blonde ale that they offer.

Plus, it’s a great spot for families. They offer a kids’ menu and plenty of coloring activities to keep the little ones entertained. 

Now, if all that isn’t reason enough to visit, they sweeten the deal by giving first-time visitors a free bottle of beer to take home. Now that’s an offer you can’t refuse!

Whelan’s Irish Pub


Address: 11709 SE Division St, Portland, OR 97266, United States

Contact details: +1 503-327-8020

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 4:00 PM – 2:30 AM

Price: $

Whelan’s has everything you’d expect or want in an Irish pub: family-friendly fun, live Irish music, and perfectly poured Guinness.

If you’re in the mood for Irish-inspired fare, they have you covered with classics like shepherd’s pie or bangers and mash. There are also other bar favorites such as chicken wings, burgers, sandwiches, and salads.

To top it all off, the vibe is pretty relaxed, but things can get lively on weekend nights (I usually drop by on a Saturday). 

And of course, what’s an Irish pub without sports? You’re covered there too, with three big TVs always showing different games or sports talk. Not into sports? Just head to the patio or the pool table!

10 Barrel Brewing


Address: 1411 NW Flanders St, Portland, OR 97209, United States

Contact details: +1 503-224-1700

Operating hours: Monday – Thursday: 12:00 PM – 9:00 PM | Friday – Saturday: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM | Sunday: 11:00 AM – 8:00 PM

Price: $

You won’t get enough beer at 10 Barrel Brewing. Although 10 Barrel’s main brewery is in Bend, brewmaster Whitney Burnside keeps the Pearl location’s 20-barrel system pumping out favorites like Apocalypse IPA and Pearl DIPA. 

But it’s not just about the beer – the kitchen serves hungry locals everything from typical pub grub like pizza and burgers. They even serve more exotic options like Thai curry mussels and Nashville hot chicken. 

And what’s a good cold beer without pretzels? 10 Barrel Brewing serves up the absolute best pretzels you’ll ever have (or for me, at least!). They’re hot, slightly crisp on the bottom, soft and fresh on the inside, and perfectly seasoned with bagel seasoning. 

Plus, they’re served with both beer cheese and exceptional grainy mustard in generous portions.

And hey, they even have a dog-friendly rooftop patio where you can expect very little elbow room on warm days.

Deschutes Brewery & Public House


Address: 210 NW 11th Ave, Portland, OR 97209, United States

Contact details: +1 503-296-4906

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 11:30 AM – 9:00 PM

Price: $$

Deschutes is a classic in the Oregon brewing scene, and their spot in Portland is a hit for good reason – awesome beer, tasty food, and a chill urban vibe.

Beers like Chainbreaker White IPA and Black Butte Porter are must-tries, along with seasonal and experimental brews brewed right on-site. 

As for the food, you can’t go wrong with the pub’s spicy fried chicken and waffles, which pack a bit of heat offset by the sweetness of the maple gastrique and kale atop a sourdough waffle. 

But the crowd-pleaser is their garlic fries. Tossed in a rosemary-orange aioli and topped with shredded manchego – a perfect pair for your pint!

Friendly tip: they have different entertainment every night for their customers, such as trivia night, game night, and various drink specials. So, don’t forget to check out their website to see what’s happening when you visit.

Hopworks Brewery

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Address: 2944 SE Powell Blvd, Portland, OR 97202, United States

Contact details: +1 503-232-4677

Operating hours: Sunday – Wednesday: 11:30 AM – 9:00 PM | Thursday – Saturday: 11:30 AM – 10:00 PM

Price: $

One of the pioneers of organic beer in Portland, this brewpub has been a staple on Powell for over a decade now. 

The taphouse has both upper and lower levels, with a kids’ play area stocked with toys. And for the adults, they have a whopping 20 taps offering IPAs, stouts, and even their own house-made cider. 

Here, you can munch on bar snacks like wings and warm pretzels. But it’s the calzones that truly steal the show. The warm baked crust is practically bursting with organic marinara, herbs, and a seemingly endless selection of other toppings.

Sounds like a great spot? Well, here’s some good news – they don’t take reservations, so you can normally drop by whenever you want. 

However, on Friday evenings and weekends, this place fills up with families, so you might want to rethink your timing if you’re not a fan of crowds.

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