Brian's Photo Blog — Article 671
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A North and East Portland Pub Crawl (Of Sorts)
Saturday 22 July 2017   —   Category: Dining Out
In early September 2016 I had to pick up my wife and daughter at the Portland airport at 11:30 PM. I had some errands to run in the Big City, therefore I hit the road in the early afternoon. I am pretty much never in Portland on a Thursday evening, so I also wanted to attend a couple of events that happen only at that time. My trip ended up being a dis­joint­ed pub crawl (of sorts) in the northern and eastern sections of the city.
My first stop was at Portland Brewing on the corner of NW Industrial Street and 31st Avenue in the Portland’s North­west Industrial neighborhood.

Sadly, it didn’t fit into my schedule to sit down in their taproom to enjoy some of the interesting beers and food on the menu. This first visit was for beer shop­ping only.

As soon as I walked through the main entrance my attention was immediately captivated by two large copper brew kettles to the left. Obviously they are very upfront with their brewing.

The strong backlight through the win­dows, the immense size of the kettles and the tight quarters made pho­to­graph­ing them a challenge.

Over the previous year or two I had enjoyed their seasonal Noble Scot Scot­tish Ale a number of times in a bomber bottle, so I wanted to see if I could buy a case of this beer in smaller bottles.

To the right of the main entrance was the taproom, hostess / cashier and gift store. After explaining my errand she directed me to the dock sales at the back of the building.

The guy in the back told me that it was the last year they were making Noble Scot. I was so sorry to hear this news that I decided to get two cases instead of one: 48 twelve-​ounce bottles.

After having a few at home over the following weeks I realized that I didn’t like this beer as much as I had thought. Now I don’t mind if they don’t make it any more because I would probably not buy it again even if they did!

Since I was already so far north I de­cid­ed to cross to the east side of the Wil­lam­ette River via the historic (built in 1931) and breathtaking St. Johns Bridge. I stopped at Cathedral Park, under the east end of the bridge, taking a total of 36 photos during my brief 15-​minute visit. The best 16 are on display in the Portland St. Johns Bridge 2016 album. For more details, see my article Port­land’s St. Johns Bridge.
The rest of my outing took me all over eastern Portland. By this time I was ready for something to eat and drink, so my next stop was the mecca of Portland artisan pizza: Ken’s Artisan Pizza, on SE 28th Avenue in the Kerns neighborhood of inner Southeast Portland.

I’ve already written separately about this part of my pub crawl — see the second section of Portland Artisan Pizza Mini Pub Crawl for all of the delicious details.
My first visit to the Cheese Bar was back in August 2015. This wonderful cheese store and restaurant is located on the eastern edge of the Belmont Area in the Mount Tabor neighborhood of Southeast Portland, about two miles east of Ken’s Pizza.

On many Thursday evenings they hold a mini wine-​tasting event. Since this was my first opportunity to attend one, I for sure did not want to miss it.
Joshua Chang of Lemma Wines was pouring three wines from his French portfolio: I liked the Bordeaux Blanc blend the best, so I bought a bottle for myself and another for my mom for Christmas. I haven’t opened it yet ... saving it for a special occasion.

Before leaving I also purchased some truly scrumptious Italian Quadrello di Bufala cheese made from water buffalo milk. You have just gotta try it sometime!
Even though the Cheese Bar was my fourth stop, I still had nearly five hours to occupy until it was time to pick up my family at the airport. And most of that was going to be in the dark, because sunset was quickly approaching.

So I headed back west down Belmont Street until I arrived at the historic (established 1855) Lone Fir Cemetery, only a quarter of a mile from Ken’s Pizza where I had dined not long before.

I arrived at 7:00, just before sunset. About 20 minutes later the sun had disappeared; then it was my turn to disappear and start my next errand.

I have already covered this stop in more detail in my last article: Portland’s Historic Lone Fir Cemetery. Out of the 19 photos I took, the best 12 can be viewed in the Portland Lone Fir Cem­e­ter­y 2016 album.

As part of my McMenamins Passport adventure, I decided to spend the rest of the evening visiting a couple of McMenamins pubs which I had never been to before so I could get their venue stamps in my Passport.
My next stop was the Barley Mill Pub, on the corner of SE Hawthorne and 17th Avenue in the Hawthorne District, less than half a mile southwest of Lone Fir Cemetery. It opened in 1983 as the first McMenamins pub.

I parked my derrière at a sidewalk table and slowly sipped a pint of Pilgrimage Pale Ale while watching the street and sidewalk traffic go by as dusk deepened. According to the brewer:

“The Pilgrimage Pale is full bodied and low in alcohol with bread and toffee malt flavors upfront. It finishes with nice, light hop flavors on the back end. Most of the bitterness is dulled by the residual sugar, creating a balanced, refreshing Pale Ale.” Meas­ure­ments: 4.8% ABV • 41 IBU

I had forgotten that I had already tried this beer in June. I had thought it was pretty good then, but my notes from this second try read: “I’m not so convinced this time! It’s OK, but not great ... different ... and you know what that means!”
After making that beer last as long as possible, I drove north on Oregon Route 99E for four or so miles to the McMenamins historic Chapel Pub on Killingsworth St. in the Humboldt neighborhood of North Portland.

I arrived a bit before 9:00 PM. Since I didn’t have to be at the airport until nearly 11:30, I was planning on hanging out here for quite a while. But that was OK, because there was live music to keep me entertained. McMenamins describes it like this:
On Thursday evenings, Steve Kerin entertains the Chapel Pub by playing all of your favorite songs, but in a way that you have never heard them before — on solo pipe organ!

The au­di­ence is encouraged to request tunes from a list of nearly a thousand songs. They range all the way from pop to heavy metal, jazz to movie themes, ’80s hits to oldies. It is charming and fun to hear these songs on an actual pipe organ — that’s with pipes, chimes, and all — in an old church. You have got to hear this!
Here’s a view of the Chapel Pub interior from my table.

I tried a sample of their yucky Vanilla Terminator beer. It was so awful that I didn’t even take a picture of it. For­tu­nate­ly, they also had some yummy sea­son­al Copper Moon ale.

Later I had a Dr. Pepper to start winding down my pub crawl, and to help keep me awake for the long drive back to Albany.
The eighth and final stop for the day was, finally, the Portland airport. I got there somewhat early because I was getting a bit bored at the Chapel Pub — there is a limit to how slowly you can sip a soda. At least I had plenty of time to check out the newish PDX carpet.

If I remember correctly, we didn’t get home until about 1:30 AM, and didn’t get to bed until 2:00. What a jam-​packet afternoon and evening!
Brian's Photo Blog — Article 671
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