As we have all learned from our weekly Sunday evening zombie apocalypse tutorials (What's that? You don't watch The Walking Dead?! Well THAT, my friend, is a mistake), when the brains hit the fan, critical supply shortages will ensue, the worst of which, IMHO, will be wine. And as we learned from Shaun of the Dead, the best way around this dilemma is to take refuge from the undead hordes at your favorite booze source. Following these veins of thought to their logical conclusion, I've compiled a list of Portland's best wine shops--head there now to pick up something nice for supper, or designate one as your ideal hideout in the event of World War Z. Talk about being prepared.
Known for their vast selection and expert assistance, this SW Portland shop's a favorite among local wine lovers. Lots of cool free tastings, check their Facebook page for updated info.
This big, laid-back Woodstock wine bar/market will meet your basic wine and cheese needs--the cheese case is small but covers the bases and the wine selection is thoughtfully curated, plus you can't help but love all the champagne magnums scattered about. They've got a daily happy hour (5-7pm), and you can order a cheese sampler plate for $3.95.
Although it's conveniently plunked right in the middle of Broadway, this cheery wine bar seems a world away from the downtown hustle. They specialize in Oregon Pinot Noir, and there’s no red wine list—you can get 1.5-ounce tastes, glass pours, or of course, bottles, of whatever's on tap that day. I go for the bubbly myself, there’s always something fun in the cooler at the end of the bar.
An edible oasis in the midst of Hawthorne’s funky retail chaos, this well-stocked neighborhood specialty market has a tip-top cheese counter, and you won’t want for wine and beer pairings either. If you don't feel like making your own meal, mosey into adjoining Evoe for some of the best small plates in Portland.
Find no-fuss weeknight home picnic necessities at this picture-perfect neighborhood market—fresh oysters, a killer cheese and charcuterie case, baguettes, olives, ripe organic fruit, imported chocolate bars, Two Tarts' cookies, and plenty of great Italian wine.
Emphasizing inexpensive wines in a laid back atmosphere, this cozy Alberta Street wine shop also has a few tables so you can sit and enjoy a glass or bottle of wine (you can bring your own food if you want). Celebrate making it through the week with their regularly scheduled Friday Night Flights tastings from 5-9pm.
Just the vintage bathtub filled with bottles of champagne is captivating enough, but this exceptional wine shop also has a soft spot for rosé, a packed calendar of tastings, winemaker appearances & fun special events, AND a wall of chocolate.
Tucked away in a mini-strip mall just off busy NW 23rd Avenue, this scholarly shop has relaxed, hands-off staff that are happy to let you browse at your leisure, or step in when you need just the right suggestion for your dinner party. Great tasting flights on the 1st and 3rd Friday of each month, plus free Saturday afternoon tastings.
If you’re stranded in Beaumont without so much as a morsel of Manchego, pop into this comfortable little wine shop and head for the “Atomic” cheese counter. Don’t hesitate to ask owner Andy Diaz for pairing advice, he’s an expert wine-'n-cheese matchmaker.
Besides penning one of the most interesting and entertaining wine newsletters in town, this excellent John's Landing shop's erudite owner Michael Alberty hosts some fantastic tastings, many of which are free.
Mismatched thrift store furniture and a relaxed demeanor make this North Portland hipster bar an excellent spot to savor a belly-warming red in the winter, and in the summer, the charmingly tousled garden is the perfect place to take down the excellent house burger. If you need a bottle to go, duck into the adjoining bottle shop—the savvy staff will steer you towards exactly what you seek.
A popular waiting area for patient fans of neighboring Saburo's, this funky Sellwood wine shop is a fun spot to spend an afternoon sharing a bottle of wine and a cheese & charcuterie plate with someone interesting. Best seat's the red velvet sofa under the stairs.
Simple little neighborhood wine shop on the south end of 28th Avenue's restaurant row. If you've got $10 burning a hole in your pocket on Friday afternoon, pop in from 4:30-8 for the five-wine Friday Night Flights tasting. Free tastings on the weekends, plus a nice big patio for leisurely sipping in fair weather.
Lovely, light-filled space with plenty of affordable wines and some of the friendliest service I've had at a wine shop. Seems like they've always got a little somethin' somethin' open for you to taste, too.