As much as Portland is known for its hordes of foodies, it is also famous for its collective love of well-crafted beer and intricate cocktails. This month saw the opening of numerous straight-ahead bars that cater to folks looking for nothing more than a stiff drink and a hearty burger. Of course, we also like to look good while we sip, and July produced a wealth of new clothing shops and boutiques as well. So, with a few more solid weeks of patio season to go, throw on your new (affordable) designer duds and go hit a happy hour somewhere. If it all becomes too much, however, this month’s list also includes a gym and a massage specialist. So rest easy, the dream of guilt-free gluttony is alive in Portland.
Betsy & Iya
Betsy & Iya has made a name for itself nationally with its popular jewelry selection. Now the Portland-based company is branching out with a central location in Northwest that will offer many of its signature jewelry pieces along with a selection of clothes and other accessories. Will Cervarich, husband of Betsy Cross, who designs the jewelry, says that the shop will be a reflection of his wife’s stylistic tastes. “She has hand-selected everything in the shop, so it all stems from her sense of fashion and what’s beautiful or striking in some way,” he says. As for the jewelry, which is now made in the NW Thurman location, Cevarich describes Betsy & Iya’s wares as “fashion forward, affordable… It’s a play of perpendicularity, so all of the jewelry is bold, but you might find intricate or smaller pieces to it.”
Betsy and Iya, 2403 NW Thurman Street, 503.227.5482
House of Lolo
New women’s clothing boutiques seem to pop up in the Pearl every month. One of the newest arrivals is House of Lolo, a shop that has already generated a bit of local buzz for its impressive collection and reasonable prices. “We carry a contemporary mix,” says assistant manager Devany Jones. “Almost all of our clothes are from Los Angeles… [but] we’re looking to incorporate more Portland designers as well. It’s definitely a West Coast vibe.” Jones says that the House of Lolo’s offerings fit perfectly with Portland’s collective fashion conscience. “We like to mix vintage, really feminine styles with more edgy, trendy styles,” she says. Despite the impressive selection, however, the boutique prides itself on having something for every budget. “Everyone is surprised by how inexpensive it is,” Jones says.
House of Lolo, 1037 NW Couch Street, 503.224.5240
Banh mi, Vietnamese sandwiches made on a French baguette, have long been a favorite for Portlanders, but they can typically only be found out towards 82nd Avenue. Lela’s Bistro brings the delightful sandwiches closer into town. The NW 23rd restaurant offers an array of different sandwiches along with other Vietnamese basics like salad rolls and lemongrass chicken salad. The main attraction is obviously the sandwiches, which come with topping such as barbecue pork, bulgogi and egg. For vegans, there are grilled Portobello and fried tofu options as well. As if the sandwiches weren’t enough, Lela’s also serves booze.
Lela's Bistro, 1524 NW 23rd Avenue, 503.719.4744
Mio Seafood Market
While you may not be able to create your own successful chain of sushi restaurants, a trip to the Mio Seafood Market will provide everything you need for some in-house rolling. The Mio Seafood Market, opened by Mio Sushi owner Sunny Kim, offers fresh fish, along with prepared sashimi and all of the necessary ingredients for homemade sushi. Pick up some nori and udon noodles to go with your fresh salmon or tuna, and don’t forget the avocados. Iron Chef may not be in your future, but a fun, hands-on dinner is. Just try not to get discouraged when the sushi you make doesn’t look like the rolls at Mio.
Mio Seafood Market, 1703 NW 16th Avenue, 503.972.1140
Moonshine Kitchen & Lounge
Low-slung, with a bright blue paint job and picnic tables out front, Moonshine Kitchen & Lounge brings some much needed informality to the Westside. With a straight-ahead selection of beer and well-executed cocktails, the bar is an ideal place for a quick post-work beer or a full night with friends. Those seeking some sustenance to go with their suds can take down one of the affordable burgers topped with cheddar and fresh veggies, and, if you’re feeling particularly hungry, homemade chili. The walls of Moonshine are adorned with plenty of retro beer paraphernalia, and the bar is lined with old-school cushy barstools, perfect for a joint that exudes simple happiness.
Moonshine Kitchen & Lounge, 1020 NW 17th Avenue, 503.943.2780
The Pink Rose, the latest addition to the Pearl District’s restaurant scene, offers thoughtful dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The menu offers fresh takes on American standards with locally sourced ingredients. Gourmet lunch diners can take on the rose burger, which boasts confit pork belly along with gruyère cheese, fried onions and Dijon aioli, while the less meat-inclined can munch on the grilled vegetable platter, which includes, among other things, portobello, asparagus, and basil pesto. The dinner menu keeps things interesting as well. The flat iron steak comes with blue cheese and roasted onions, while the salmon entrée includes saffron couscous. Pink Rose, which keeps its prices reasonable, figures to be another welcome addition to the neighborhood.
Pink Rose, 1300 NW Lovejoy, 503.482.2165
Quimby’s at 19th
Quimby’s at 19th, a bar/restaurant, is located next to the food cart pod at NW Quimby and 19th Avenue and allows customers of the food carts to eat inside. Adjoining food carts include Farmhouse and Sawasdee Thai, while the dining area itself houses a kitchen that churns out pub grub like pizza, calzones and nachos. Perhaps the biggest draw of Quimby’s, which used to go by Cheers, is the full bar, which includes six beers on tap and happy hour during the afternoon and late night.
Quimby's at 19th, 1502 NW 19th Avenue, 503.222.3416
Having become a hit within Lake Oswego’s fashion scene, Silkwood has opened a second location on NW 11th Avenue. The women’s fashion boutique relies heavily on Los Angeles-based designers as well as European lines like Dolcezza and Sunlight Paris. Owner Sandy Varzarschi says that the only difference between the two Silkwood locations is that the Pearl location “Might be a little more edgy as far as the style of clothing goes.” Varzarschi adds that her fashion-forward collection is more accessible than the elite brand names might suggest. “The main difference from the other boutiques is my price points,” she says. “I really try to have good quality at reasonable prices.” In a city where high fashion isn’t exactly the norm, Silkwood may be just what the fashion doctor ordered.
Silkwood, 1019 NW 11th Avenue, 503.208.3787
RingSide Fish House
Seeking to capitalize on Portland’s relatively close proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the RingSide ownership group has opened RingSide Fish House, an ambitiously large seafood restaurant in the Fox Tower. The space is swanky with a bit of nautical paraphernalia tossed in for good measure. Chef Johnny Nunn’s menu boasts a solid balance of surf and turf options, including herb crusted albacore tuna and numerous steak options. Seafood purists can enjoy selections from the raw bar, the star feature of RingSide’s happy hour.
Ringside Fish House, 838 SW Park Avenue, 503.227.3900
Beech Street Parlor
Located at the corner of NE Beech Street and MLK, the Beech Street Parlor occupies an unassuming two-story house. Within, however, is a bar created by the people behind Tiga, the NE hotspot that brings in a loud, young crowd many nights of the week. The Beech House, as it is affectionately called, will feature a bar menu from chef Henry Kibit of Noble Rot Fame. The parlor’s beer list is impressive and mostly locally sourced, and includes the likes of Amnesia Porter, Fort George Vortex IPA, and Hub Seven Grain Stout. Like Tiga, the Beech Street Parlor will offer DJs regularly, so that the bar goes from mere house to house party.
Beech Street Parlor, 412 NE Beech Street, 503.946.8184
Without proper guidance and training, getting in shape can be a tough proposition. At CrossFit StumpTown, the new NE location for the widely practiced CrossFit physical training regimen, exercisers of all levels can use personalized assistance to find a workout that works for them. CrossFit is officially described as “constantly varied, functional movements performed at high intensity.” According to co-owner and head coach Tony Edgerton, that means everything from gymnastics training to power lifting. “Each time you come in, you’re going to have a different workout,” he says. Not only are the methods unique, so is the gym’s atmosphere, which encourages comfort and inclusivity. “It’s not intimidating,” Edgarton says. “We claim ourselves as the anti-global gym, the anti-24 Hour Fitness.”
CrossFit StumpTown, 535 NE 28th Avenue, 503.887.8030
Dig A Pony
With an old-school Northwest feel, Dig a Pony will likely be a hit among Portland’s would-be lumberjack set. Formerly Niki’s restaurant, the space, which the bar’s website describes as “cozy, library-style interior,” includes a horseshoe bar with room for 40 people, as well church pews and stained glass that will surely establish memorably hip ambience. In addition to selections from the full bar, patrons will be able to snack on offerings like sautéed mushrooms and the barbecue tempeh sandwich. The tasty grub and antique gear isn’t the only attraction, however. DAP will have a live DJ every night. Time to party like it’s 1917.
Dig A Pony, 736 SE Grand Avenue
The Rum Club is a spot for those seeking well-crafted cocktails from a simpler time. Owner Kevin Ludwig, who owns the ever-popular Beaker & Flask next door, has opened a space that resembles a 1950s man cave dream with proper refreshments to boot. With throwback drinks like the quarterdeck cocktail and retro bites like pickled eggs and shrimp cocktail, The Rum Club is fit to be a hit among Portland’s myriad gourmet drinkers. The U-shaped wood bar includes just 12 seats, but there is sufficient table seating plus a patio for outdoor imbibing.
Rum Club, 720 SE Sandy Boulevard
From the boozy, vegan minds that brought you the always-hopping Bye and Bye comes Sweet Hereafter, a new bar on SE Belmont. The new spot more or less follows the formula of its NE Alberta predecessor: strong, interesting drinks, a menu chock full of vegan bar food, and an outdoor patio for sun-soaked sipping and primo people watching. In the waning summer weeks, it will be hard to pass up the hereafter, the bar’s signature drink, which boasts vodka, bourbon, iced tea, and lemon—a sort of Arnold Palmer sent from heaven above. Pair it with an edamame mushroom burger or a vegan buffalo sandwich. Icing on the (dairy free) cake: Sweet Hereafter’s happy hour is from 4 to 7 p.m.
Sweet Hereafter, 3326 SE Belmont Street
West Coast JuJu
Showing that old duds can be salvaged in stylish, socially-conscious ways, West Coast JuJu’s primary offering is its collection of skirts made from old t-shirts and other scrapped fabrics. The skirts are colorful and fashionable, and appear much greater than the sum of their parts. You can give the store one of your favorite old t-shirts, and they will rehab it as a t-skirt with 10% of the proceeds going to charity. To further enrich the neighborhood, West Coast Juju allows organizations to reserve the store for a few hours, and then donates 10% of the profits to the organization. West Coast JuJu is a chief example of how Portlanders like to look good, and feel good doing so.
West Coast JuJu, 700 SE Hawthorne Boulevard, 503.349.5457
Blue Buddha Bodywork
Overlook, Overlook Village
For years, Jonathan Moore-Garrison has been using various massage methods that go far beyond just getting rid of muscle kinks and knots. With his new storefront location on N Killingsworth, Moore-Garrison has a calm, soothing space in which to practice is advanced techniques. Chief among them is cranio-sacral therapy, which opens nerve passages and sets bones in their proper positions. Customers of Blue Buddha can also opt for reflexology treatments, accupressure, and more traditional massages that are designed to lessen pain and improve general wellness.
Blue Buddha Bodywork, 1901 N Killingsworth Street, 503.430.4374
Atomic Ice Cream
Overlook, Overlook Village
Ah, to be six years old again, when people planned your birthday parties for you and it was almost a guarantee that pizza and ice cream would be involved. Recapture some of that childhood glee with a visit to Atomic Ice Cream, which opened as part of the increasingly popular NoPo spot, Atomic Pizza. Atomic features offerings from local ice cream favorite Ruby Jewel, including salted lime sorbet, malted vanilla, and salted dark chocolate. After the joy of one of Atomic Pizza’s killer pies, the ice cream will taste even better. No goody bag necessary.
Atomic Ice Cream, 2150 N Killiingsworth Street, 503.285.5490