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July 2nd, 2014 MARTIN CIZMAR | Bar Reviews
 

Yard House: First and 130

clublist_yardhouse_4035YARD HOUSE - IMAGE: Thomas Teal

Even in beer-buzzed Portland, a new bar with 130 taps gets attention. A big selection of suds isn’t necessarily enough to ensure prosperity for a chain—witness the quick crash of the successful-everywhere-else Mellow Mushroom, which lasted only a year in the Pearl District—but it gives downtown’s new Yard House (888 SW 5th Ave., 222-0147, yardhouse.com) a good start. Situated in the ground floor and basement of the Pioneer Place outbuilding that formerly housed Saks Fifth Avenue and now sports a blocklong Apple store, Yard House is massive. For perspective, it has 50 Oregon beers on tap—as many as the total—domestic and foreign—at Apex. That’s Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster) catering to Cascadians whom they know love all things local. The bar is a big square covered in televisions and tap handles, and though the beer list could use another page of one-offs and seasonals, there’s no chance even the geekiest of geeks wouldn’t be stoked to discover something like a Base Camp Weissbier or a rare Belgian. The fluffy pizza isn’t half-bad, either—at least not when it’s half-price (about $8) during happy hour—and the room is lively though not deafening. Considering how busy Bailey’s Taproom is after work, it’s a smart place for beer drinkers to start a long night on the west side. And if you’re eager to sip from those 50 taps at Apex afterward, the No. 4 bus is right across the street. 

 
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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