Portland is an amazing city, but as a friend’s brother said to me once, doesn’t have any, ahem, “giant d*cks” to visit, aka the Empire State Building or the Eiffel Tower.
So it’s beer and food for entertainment and oh, the choices you have! Let me lead you on my adventure of one awesome afternoon in Portland, Oregon.
Day drinking is an art form, and not for the faint of heart. This was fueled by the decision to buy a 5-dollar bus pass in order to avoid searching for parking all day.
Best decision I’ve made in a long time, and if you truly want to enjoy all Portland has to offer, I can think of no better recommendation than a BUS PASS and a will to get up and start enjoying drinks early.
There are so many breweries and neighborhoods that I could go on all day! Here’s the rundown of my day trip with a few of my fellow dames…
Brunch is an athletic event in Portland.
If you don’t get up early, be prepared to wait for a while! Jam is a great choice, SE Hawthorne Blvd, where you can self serve some coffee while waiting for a table and luckily that day had sunshine and some chairs.
This where the bad/great decisions started, because once we sat down, we decided to order a bucket of champagne, AND you get to choose a juice and a flavor (we went with grapefruit and lavender YUM). The staff is friendly but odd and the food is generous. But who cares when you’re drinking mimosas?
We took a bus to the river..
made our way to the Saturday market taking selfies with the bridges (The PDX bus app makes planning a trip easy to get started!)
Around the corner you’ll also find VooDoo donuts if you feel the need for a bacon maple donut, and a buttload of stalls and crafts. You could easily spend all day here, but there are more adult beverages to be had.
From here we took the 4 bus on SW 6th to N. Mississippi Ave in North Portland, and walked along Mississippi Ave.
There are so many adorable shops but my favorite was Paxton Gate, which is full of interesting stuffed dead animals and other weird things that make you go “hhm..?” I considered buying a necklace made of anaconda backbone, but it didn’t really go with my shoes.
Clearly, we needed another cocktail, so we headed into Bar Bar on N Mississippi Ave, which has outdoor seating, bonus! I had a spppiccyy bloody mary, so if you don’t like hot, avoid. It was amazing, besides which it cost $6, true everyday for bloody marys and upside down margartias, from 12-6pm.
I asked the bartender what an “upside down margarita” was and she said, “No idea. But we muddle the fruit and make our own simple syrup, so I know it tastes good!” Fair play.
We giggled our way to the nearest bus stop on Mississippi and took the 4 bus again to N Vancouver St and headed to Ex Novo for delicious microbrewery beer.
I had the sour beer, recently made and fantastic but I was having a little bit too much fun to remember the name for you now.
There is limited outdoor seating, but we were in the mood and looked sadly at the hostess. There were clearly a few tables nearly finished, so she recommended to us that we stand outside staring at the tables until someone got uncomfortable and left. Amazingly hilarious advice and totally worked.
At this point we were comfortably buzzing and decided we should eat. You could probably hear us chanting “BUS PASS, BUS PASS” from a mile away, we were so delighted how well the afternoon was going, made better by the fact that no one had to drive.
We headed to food trucks (called Tidbit, so cute) on SE 28th and Division..
from the same bus stop on N Vancouver, which has a plethora of different food trucks to choose from, so pick your poison. I wasn’t overly impressed with my Indian plate but I would have eaten a pile of rocks covered in curry sauce at that point. It’s family style seating, and the couple next to me was eating the most amazing looking Japanese noodles. I think I made them uncomfortable.
So take it slow and solo and enjoy a few afternoon beers in Rip City. Or gather a crowd and turn it into an Olympic event. Beer and food are just some of the reasons that make Portland a great place to visit, and since it’s a weird town, no one even looks at you twice if you spend the whole day drunk on a bus.
Here’s the breakdown of the day:
- Brunch in style @ Jam, 2239 SE Hawthorne Blvd. Open everyday 7:30am-3pm.
- Buy things you don’t need @ Saturday market, Governor Tom McCall Waterfront Park. Open Saturdays 10am – 5pm and Sundays 11am-4:30pm.
- The famous hipster stop @ VooDoo Donuts, 22 SW 3rd Ave. Open 24 hours.
- Wander around @ N. Mississippi Ave, there are several cross streets with bus stops.
- Get weird with taxidermy @ Paxton Gate, 4204 N Mississippi Ave. Open everyday 11am-7pm
- Spicy Bloody Mary’s @ Bar Bar, 3939 N Mississippi Ave. Open everyday 11am-2am.
- Microbrewery Portland style @ Ex Novo, 2326 N Flint Ave. Opens weekdays at 3pm, weekends at noon.
- Tidbit food trucks @2880 SE Division St. Each truck keeps it’s own hours.
There are so many microbreweries, weird shops and delicious food in Portland, it would be impossible to visit them all in one afternoon.
I seriously recommend the 5 dollar bus pass, a one way trip can cost $2.50 on it’s own, and you can download the PDX Bus app to help you plan your trip and it lets you know what time the bus should arrive.
Less to think about + having a designated driver = more time for silliness.
Have you been to Portland, OR? What are your favorite spots?
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