To-Do List: Drink in a Hidden Bar, From a Pho Bowl, and Locally at Brunch

Follow more “To-Do List” posts for updates on where, what, and how to drink in PDX.  Check these drinking adventures off your list!

Drink in a hidden bar: The Wayback 

In Portland we drink beer in record stores, bike shops, swimwear boutiques, barbershops, and from food carts. It’s not that surprising that we can drink from the back of leather goods and home furnishings store but it’s definitely welcomed.

The Wayback, is a hidden mid-century bar and café concept in the back of the Tanner Goods (4719 N. Albina Aveune). Draft cocktails, sparkling wine, sangria and local craft beer are available in case we need to take a break from everyday tasks and catch a buzz. If you’re anything like me—it’s essential every damn day.

Kentucky Mule from Wayback at Tanner Goods.

Drink (a cocktail) from a pho bowl: “Pho King Fresh” at Bit House Saloon

I’m always pleasantly surprised by Bit House Saloon’s (727 SE Grand Avenue) creativity. When you select a cocktail from the menu—you know it’s going to be good—then they exceed your expectations with presentation. The Pho King Fresh cocktail is served in a pho bowl and the straws even come in a chopsticks wrapper. The bowl is garnished with the usual pho accompaniments: basil, jalapeño, and bean sprouts.

Even with all of the normal garnish, Pho King Fresh isn’t savory…it’s made from Portland 88 vodka by New Deal Distillery, preserved lemon, thai basil, Kümmel, lime, ginger beer, and finished with a “pho” mist. It’s super refreshing and a must-try before it’s gone.

Pho Fresh King Bit House Saloon Cocktail
Drink the Pho Fresh King all by yourself.

Drink locally before noon: Bad Habit Room Brunch

I’ve joked for years that I want to open a brunch spot in Portland called “Line Up Here,” just to capitalize on all of those Portlanders jumping at the chance to stand in line for their first meal of the day.

The Bad Habit Room ( 5433 N Michigan Ave.) located on the backside of Saraveza Bottle Shop (1004 N. Killingsworth Street) surprisingly flies under the radar of many. The brunch menu is everything we want: house-made pop tarts, smoked trout hash, and huevos rancheros—and a cocktail menu that fulfills our need to drink locally. Try these cocktails made with local spirits next time you’re in the mood for exceptional brunch sans the line.

Salty Dog Cocktail Bad Habit Room
Look at that open table back there!

SALTY DOG – Portland 88 Vodka (New Deal Distillery), grapefruit juice, and a salted rim, served on ice.

BLOODY MARY – Portland 88 Vodka (New Deal Distillery) and house mix, pickle skewer & celery stalk.

BOURBON OLD FASHIONED – Bull Run Temperance Bourbon & orange twist.

STRONG & BLACK – Extracto coffee, Red Wing Coffee Liqueur (Stone Barn Brandyworks) and Flor de Cana 7 Yr Grand Reserve Rum with whipped cream.

SCREWDRIVER – Portland 88 Vodka (New Deal Distillery) and fresh OJ.

FRENCH 75 – Torre Oria Cava, sugar cube, fresh lemon juice and Aviation Gin.

HOT TODDY – Whipper Snapper whiskey (Ransom Spirits – Sheridan, Oregon), honey, lemon, hot water served with cinnamon stick & star anise.

Have something to add to the next “High-Proof To-Do?” Contact me and I’ll check it out!

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