Portland's Best Happy Hours

By Molly McSweyn | November 19, 2016 5:00am
by Sam Keeler / The Beacon

The eminent stress of finals and the weight of recent events going on outside of the UP bubble are enough to make any sane (or trying to stay sane, anyway) 21-year-old college student yearn for a drink. But it’s hard to knock a few back without straining your wallet in the process.

The Beacon has you covered. Here are five Portland happy hours that will give you the best bang for your buck!

The Knock Back:

2315 NE Alberta St. 

Happy Hour: daily 4 - 6 p.m.

If you are looking for a Tavern feel with a kick of Portland weird, “The Knock Back” is the bar for you. Cozy and dimly lit, the bar is comfortable with an edge. 

Boar and goat heads hang above each corner table while the back wall sports huge graffiti images of the two animals. But, if you are looking for a simpler vibe, step outside onto the front porch and you will find a quiet space glowing from hanging lights. 

The chalkboard style menu reads off a medium-sized list of house cocktails and draft beers. While beer on tap is only $1 off during happy hour the real catch is the $3 wells drinks. Go for a gin and tonic if you are looking for simplicity but if you want to step over to the wild side, order their house alcoholic slushies. You won’t be disappointed. 


2108 NW Glisan St.

Happy Hour: Tuesday - Saturday 4 - 6:30 p.m., Sunday/Monday all day

Portland is a hub for beer lovers and chilled-out vibes. But, there are still hidden gems of classiness that can be found for the more sophisticated drinker. “Bartini” is the epitome of class. Dark walls adorned with silver-rimmed mirrors and limited seating create an atmosphere where stiletto heels or a raised pinky would be perfectly acceptable. 

With a limited menu of more typical drinks, this bar is really known for its extensive and creative martini list. From categories such as clean and serene, decadent, or spicy, there is a martini for every different taste. While the price is a little steep during regular hours, make your way to “Bartini” during their happy hour for a $4 glass of unique class. 

If you are looking for something elegant yet strong, order their Rose Petal martini, which literally comes with a rose petal floating in the pink alcohol. But, if you want to try something a bit less aromatic, try the English Cucumber martini for a light and refreshing taste.

Twilight Room:

5242 N. Lombard

Happy Hour: Tuesday/Thursday $2

The “T-Room” is the staple University of Portland bar. With $2 draft beers and drinks during their Tuesday/Thursday 10-11 p.m. happy hour, you can find a huge number of UP students hanging out at the bar or playing pool. Grimy tables and chipped stools fill the bar, which boasts a huge back patio. The T-Room is not known for it’s classy atmosphere. Just the opposite actually. The bar is made to feel like a tavern that hasn't been properly cleaned in a few months. But, that is all just part of the purple building’s charm. Make your way to the T-Room to catch up with UP friends and get a little tipsy off of a mediocre but strong gin and tonic.


4057 N Mississippi St.

Happy Hour: Monday - Friday 3-6pm, Sunday 10 - close

Mississippi street is full of hip bars and a slice of thriving Portland nightlife. One of the best bars along the road is “Interurban,” a space that not only offers higher quality drinks and food at a lower price, but a beautiful place to enjoy it all. 

The building looks small from the outside, and the main bar area is, but the space opens up into a lit back patio with fires and a more restaurant-oriented upstairs. The vibe is simple and laid-back, with a touch of coziness found in the dim lighting and wood-heavy interior. 

The bar’s menu boasts a selection of draft beers, with a special eye to higher-end IPAs and a few choice ciders. But, the best part about “Inturban”? The knowledgeable and extremely friendly staff that make choosing a drink that much easier.

Aalto Lounge:

3356 SE Belmont St.

Happy Hour: Daily 5-7pm

The “Aalto Lounge” has to take the winning spot for the best happy hour. The dimly lit and narrow bar is the best of both worlds. It’s a little more upscale with a beautifully decorated space and yet the happy hour is wonderfully cheap.

 The daily 5-7pm happy hour is a steal, with draft beers (Stiegl anyone?), speciality drinks and a variety of appetizers for just $2. Beyond the food and the drinks offered, the bar itself creates the perfect vibe for an early evening getaway. 

Although the space is long and narrow, the ceilings are extremely high and the low lights and backlit bar shelf add to an approachable yet classy appeal. Overall, the bar boasts the best deals with the best vibe.