At the base of East Burnside, just over the river from downtown, lies a small, delicious slice of Portlandia that affords some of the most quintessential city eating, drinking, shopping, concert-going, and strip-clubbing experiences, in just a few short blocks. Make a day of it, and should day extend to evening and you find yourself having had one too many vodka sodas, there's even a hip hotel, here in the land of LoBu.
One of Portland's oldest strip clubs, charming Union Jack's shows its wear on the outside--it's understandable to wonder if the entire building is going to fall down at any moment, but inside, it's a red-walled, red-vinyl wonderland that belongs on any respectable Portland strip club tour.
White leather booths, wine galore, twinkling views as far as the rain clouds will allow—get the girls together, don your favorite abbreviated hemline and those wicked heels that will have you hobbling home, and go all out. Please, please, PLEASE don’t pass on dessert—the ‘peanut butter & jelly’ is a life changer.
If your dream is to crash an up 'n coming rock star’s after hours hotel room party, stay here—this hip inn’s adjoining Doug Fir Lounge books some of the most interesting musical acts around, and comes complete with sexy bar, fire pit, smoking patio, and potential hookups.
This longtime staple of the lower Burnside dining scene has launched a thousand first dates, with their old-fashioned décor, homey food, and well-crafted cocktails. Come fair weather, the side patio’s a grand place to hide out when escaping the office early.
One of the city's best spots for a live show--the log-lined downstairs lounge is intimate and in my experience, you can almost always get a drink in three minutes or less. Upstairs, the sexy low lit bar is filled with attractive minglers, and there's even a fire pit, just past the smoking patio. Great late night nosh stop, they serve food until last call.
One of Portland’s forever favorites, prepare to make new friends at this Burnside bistro’s communal tables, or go right at 5pm and get the best seat in the house, at the kitchen-facing bar. If you feel like a burger, get the burger—it’s legendary.
Very cute spot to go shopping for an 80s prom party! Always something fun happening on First Friday, plus free wine.
This exquisite Lower Burnside shop takes underpants to a whole new level--these are the sort of underthings that can transform one into a sultry French vixen with just a few scraps of silk. Darling swimsuits too!
This fascinating boutique is packed with the work of more than 300 local and international artists and creators that specialize in utilizing reclaimed and recycled goods, meaning you'll always find some unique bauble. Perfect spot to gift shop, love the fun flasks!
This diminutive darling of Portland’s wine and food cognoscenti conjures visions of long nights whiled away in effortlessly sultry French watering holes. Pink wine lovers—owner/curator Amalie Roberts’ rosé list is incomparable. Per the eats menu, anything with smoked trout will make you very very happy.
Cute, comfy coffeehouse in the middle of the Lower Burnside hood, right across from Le Pigeon. Chai lattes are great, wifi is free, and they have outdoor seating. Surprisingly peaceful spot to work considering the constant flow of Bside traffic.
One of our favorite Friday date night spots, this tiny, excellent sushi and ramen bar is a buzzy melange of neighborhood folk seeking acclaimed chef Hiro's artful sushi, friends getting together for drinks and Japanese small plates, and the occasional lone chef at the bar slurping a bowl of ramen. Love the crispy salmon skin salad and ginger creme brulee.
I always seem to end up here late at night, probably because they are one of the few spots in town kind enough to keep their doors open until 3am (4am on weekends). Solid selection of pies, they are very vegan sensitive, and they have more than 35 beers. They also offer "emergency late night delivery" between 10pm and 15 minutes til close.
This popular Lower Burnside brewery transcends pub grub with its ambitious menu--think shrimp daikon fries, mussels in Massaman curry broth, the infamous "Cohiba" (duck confit fried in a crepe and wrapped in collards), and for dessert, heirloom spice cake with Grand Marnier frosting.
Tiny, gorgeous thicket of independent artists' edgy and interesting works. Stop in on First Friday, the shop is open until 9pm and usually has some sort of collaborative party in the works with their equally darling neighbors.