The 12 Best Bars in Portland, Maine

16 Jul 2018 The 12 Best Bars in Portland, Maine

By Eric Twardzik Best Bars, Featured ContentJul 10, 2018

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If someone says “Portland,” and “bar” together in the same sentence, there’s a good chance you immediately think of the largest city in Oregon. And that’s a shame, because 1) Portland, Maine, took the name first by a factor of 219 years, and 2) it hosts a vibrant, eclectic cocktail scene that can compete with towns 10 times its size.

From Old Port new-classics like Blyth & Burrows and the Portland Hunt & Alpine Club to the relentlessly experimental Bramhall and Bearded Lady’s Jewel Box, this city of just over 66,000 punches way above its weight. A night out in this city is always exciting for anyone old enough to drink, or at least, sneaky enough to know where to buy fake id cards. Throw in a handful of excellent restaurant bar programs and within-city-limits distilleries with bars of their own, and you’ve got an embarrassment of drinking riches within easy walking distance.

To be clear, this isn’t an ordered ranking of Portland’s best bars, but an alphabetical list of our favorite cocktail joints in the city. Now, off we go…

  1. The Bearded Lady’s Jewel Box
    644 Congress Street //
  2. Blyth & Burrows
    26 Exchange Street //
  3. Bramhall
    769 Congress Street //
  4. Chaval
    58 Pine Street //
  5. Grace
    15 Chestnut Street //
  6. Hardshore Distilling Company
    53 Washington Avenue //
  7. Little Giant
    211 Danforth Street //
  8. Liquid Riot
    250 Commercial Street //

    Distillery, brewery, restaurant-bar: Liquid Riot is everything short of a winery, too. Its cocktail menu unsurprisingly makes use of their extensive range of house spirits, including rums, whiskeys, a fernet and an “agave spirit,” aka American tequila. If you’re looking for something out of the ordinary to sip on, ask for a glass of their Bierschnaps (distilled beer aged in whiskey barrels) or oat whiskey made from Maine oats. While there’s plenty of seating (and a shuffleboard table) inside, the best seats in the house are on the back patio picnic tables with harbor views.

  9. Maine Craft Distilling
    123 Washington Avenue //

  10. Portland Hunt & Alpine Club
    75 Market Street //

  11. Sagamore Hill
    150 Park Street //

  12. Vena’s Fizz House
    345 Fore Street //

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