Monday, July 15, 2013


Where everybody knows your beer.
Sorry, I'm going to start this post with a cliche adage: you can't judge a book by its cover. In this case, it's actually more like you can't judge a bar by it's dive-y exterior. Located in Portland's Montavilla neighborhood, Roscoe's looks like your typical, run-of-the-mill, neighborhood watering hole. Just walking by, you'd likely never give the place a second glance, and if you're a beer lover, that would be a sad, sad mistake.

I have no idea who Roscoe is, or if there really is a Roscoe, but he sure knows a thing or two about craft beer. Once you're inside the front door and perusing the tap list, you know you're in the realm of legitimate, hardcore beergeekdom. Almost 20 selections of the latest, greatest and most sought-after brewskis in Stumptown are chalked up there on a blackboard behind the bar.

The leaderboard.
I have never been disappointed by Roscoe's beer selection. In fact, it's the first bar in Portland where I was able to find Russian River's Pliny the Elder on tap. The line-up is often both eclectic and delightfully local at the same time. Cask and nitro options, too.

Of course, all would be for naught if there wasn't some decent pub grub to go along with the great beer. Roscoe's has that covered, too! Happy hour runs from 2 to 6 PM and there are some awesome snacks to be had on the HH menu. There are a number of tasty, Cajun-inspired items to choose from. My favorites are the hush puppies and catfish sliders. The gumbo is also most excellent.

Roscoe's also has sushi available from the sushi bar next door. Apparently both places are owned by the same folks and cross-ordering is encouraged. I've never tried the sushi--not my thing--but friends tell me it's pretty good.

Service is chill, but still excellent. The bartenders know and appreciate the wares they're serving and can tell you just about anything you might want to know about every beer on tap. I even got some free advice on how to deal with the mites infesting my hops plants the last time I was at Roscoe's--only I'm pretty sure they thought I was talking about some other kind of plant.

There's a friendly, neighborhood vibe at Roscoe's and a couple of pool tables in the back. It's a great place to have a few awesome brews and make a friend or two. That's why I've got this place right up there on my Portland must-do list.

Check it out for yourself and if you see me there, you can thank me for the tip by buying me a beer.


  1. And the best thing is they allow dogs inside!

    1. Your dogs, good...mine...not so much. People would have to keep a really close watch on their beer! ;-)