Concordia Ale House
Taps: 22 / Bottles: 150
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings: 40 | Reviews: 33 | Display Reviews Only:
4.5/5 rDev +5.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
It's a new day and brunch is upon us. We're going to do some adventuring (drink) today before we get all airport bound. Jon's been talking Concordia for days now, pointing it out at least twice over the last 3 days as we've driven past it. Don't know why we never stop there but I'm just a passenger, meant to be seen and not heard, unless I's got something that needs saying, of course. Now suddenly, he wants to go there so I just don't know what his deal is. No, I don't think he was a-scareded this whole time, he was just workin' his way around town; we eventually got to where we needed to be...
It's part of a big group of pastel lime, brick, orange & brick buildings that roll around the corner. What I would call the front entrance in the seating area before the bar is technically on the side street and the side entrance to the back room is, well, you get the idea. 3 tables outside along the brickwork entrance area. 9 tables in an open room, the walls sponge painted dark orange at the bottom and growing progressive lighter to peach as it runs up and into the ceiling. Etched glass windows to both sides of the door, dark wood tables with mismatched chairs and small tin tubs with condiments, napkins and draft & bottles lists. Guinness prints between the long narrow windows with partial curtains on the far wall. Drop cone lighting above the tables and a watching & waiting bench at the end of the seating pen. Beyond the seating area is a raised bar area that runs and disappears around the bend. The "L" shaped bar seats a dozen and a half with a reverse bar counter seating 9. High ceilings, dark orange walls, wood slat floors and a nearby piano. The bar back is a pillared unit, with narrow shelves of booze and hobo prints to both sides of central mirrors. The back wall has a display of 5 shelves of tap handles. A fridge full of cold bottles sits over in the corner near the entrance to a back room holding a handful of bar tables and a pair of pool tables.
So, brunch. I had the 3 egg & pepper bacon breakfast. Came with marbled rye toast, it was all most superb. The draft list is 23 beers, roughly 2/3 of them local and regional offerings (Ninkasi, Terminal Gravity, Lucky Lab, Mt Hood, Rogue, Laurelwood, Pikes, Hales Ales, Walking Man, Butte Creek, North Coast, Lagunitas), the other 1/3 are imports; Belgians (La Rulles Summer, Gouden Carolus Classic & Tripel, La Houbilon Chouffe, Lindemans Framboise), and Germans (EKU 28, Reissdorf Kolsch). Drafts are priced in 12 ounce glasses, 16 ounce pints, 20 ounce impy pints, 32 ounce litres, and 60 ounce pitchers. There are some things you can't get in an impy pint or litre but you can get a pitcher of anything.
The bottle collection is extensive, a 100+ bottles, the list carved out by style. They do beers to go; Phil scapped the last 2 Artic Devils. Both the draft & bottle list offer up the disclaimer "Relax. The list is never current. That's why you like us".
Solid place, good food, great selection. Don't know why Jon held out on us for these last 3 days.
10-22-2006 19:46:24 | More by slander
3.36/5 rDev -21.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.25 | selection: 3.25 | $
Staying at the Kennedy School, the Concordia Alehouse was a no-brainer. It's maybe a three minute walk from the school! Beer, then sleep. Sounds like a plan.
This place is in a sort of mini strip mall, next to a Subway sandwich shop and other establishments. Inside, it is warm and neighborhood-y, less beer-nerdy and more homey than your typical Portland beer bar. It was far from lively when I visited on a Saturday at around 10pm. Lots of empty tables, some folks playing pool, bored employees... a bit sad, almost.
As I entered, they played "Reptilia" by The Strokes, one of my favorite songs. They get major points for that!
Their tap list is alright: Old Chubb, Green Bucket Triple IPA, Weihen Hefe, StormBreaker Opacus Stout, Terminal Gravity, Laurelwood Red Elephant, Elysian Espresso Milk, Barnyard Femme Fatale, Mad River 24th Anniversary... a variety of styles and lots of locals, but with so much beer goodness in Portland, Concordia falls a bit flat. I ended up getting a Woodford bourbon (only seven bucks!).
Not a destination by any means, but OK if you're in the neighborhood.
02-18-2014 22:46:05 | More by DoubleSimcoe
4.18/5 rDev -1.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
11/08 update: Really time for an update of this NE Portland beer bar, as the quality and character of this place have changed considerably since my original review.
As I understand it, the original owners sold CAH in the spring/summer of 2007. The new owner continues to do a pretty good job IMO, but there are definitely some differences.
The quality of the draft and bottle selection remains as excellent as always, and it's not unusual to find some beers here that have long since "sold out" elsewhere in Portland. The other night CAH still had bottles of Black Butte XX and Dissident, as well as a stellar draft selection.
As for atmosphere, I can't quite put my finger on it, but the place seems to have gotten a bit seedier. I liked the new pool tables in the back, but otherwise the tables and chairs in this place are starting to have something of a rundown look. Not a big deal, but I just wasn't as happy hanging out here as I have been in the past.
The one area where it seems as if CAH has really dropped off is when it comes to service. On a Tuesday night there was a very young crowd vibe to this place (which is fine, no complaints there), which included the wait staff. Service was distracted to say the least, and I ended up waiting close to 10 minutes to get a beer at the bar. Initially I thought there was only one bartender, which was crazy given the crowd (place is still packing them in if a late Tuesday night was any indication). However, two more bartenders showed up from somewhere, but that didn't help a great deal, as they clearly were more interested in chatting up their friends as opposed to taking my order. When the very nice bartender did take my order, she shorted me on my change (not purposefully I don't think), and really didn't seem very focused on what she was doing this particular night.
I'll still go back for the great beer here, and maybe I just visited (most recently) at a bad time, but this is no longer on my list of "must visit" beer bars when I travel to Portland. End of update.
Located less then a mile from my home, I've found myself stopping in at this place more and more frequently of late. As other reviewers have noted, the food is surprisingly good here, the selection of bottled beers excellent (Rochefort 10; yummm), and the revolving tap handles diverse, well thought out, and generally excellent. The owners of this place are obviously very "in" to good beer, and are happy to discuss the selection. This relatively new place has obviously "caught on," and most nights when I visit the place is filled to near capacity.
One thing that the BA needs to update is the number of bottle beers available here. I knew it was considerably more then 30, but I just called the place (out of curiousity) to get an exact number. They're up to 152 at the present time.
What's not to like?
Update. I now go to this place on a regular basis, at least a couple times a week. The beer selection just gets better and better, and the service has improved. Some folks have noted the pool tables, but thought I should also point out that pool is free here. Sometimes I almost think this place is too good to be true... but of course it isn't. :-)
01-20-2006 00:22:34 | More by John_M
4.09/5 rDev -4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I made my second trip to Concordia and it only reinforced my initial impression. I really like this place and it made me want to be a local. I could only imagine walking from the house over for beer and dinner (alone or with the family).
Concordia has a great selection of beer, both on tap and in the bottle. I had a Hopworks IPA this time around. The service wasn't great (I had to wait menu in hand for a while without much of a crowd) but I wouldn't let that hold you back.
The food looked great but I didn't have any. I hope to make up for that on a future visit.
You can't go wrong at Concordia.
02-21-2008 03:10:07 | More by GJ40
4.16/5 rDev -2.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
We stopped in here on a Saturday afternoon for a pint or two. The place feels like a pizza place, at least at that time of the day. Rather bright, with about ten tables in the front and a 15 stool bar behind.
The draft list was very good, concentrated on NW locals. I enjoyed the Black Homoerectus I had. Bottle list was extensive. This was the first time I have seen a beer bible that was all pictures. It was easier to look in the coolers behind the bar as it turned out. This was the only place we went to in Portland that still had Dissident in bottles. I was happy to be able to pick one up before we left town.
Service was just ok. The bartender was pleasant but not knowledgeable and weeded even though there were 5 bar patrons. Or maybe she was trying to avoid the obnoxious clown who chose to sit next to us despite the rest of the bar being almost empty, in which case I can't blame her. Ah, well, can't pick your customers.
We did not try any food but would definitely stop back our next time in.
10-29-2008 20:08:57 | More by sholland119
3.68/5 rDev -13.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
I was told that this place was one of the first bars in Portland to embrace the craft beer scene, but that they have in turn fallen a bit by the wayside as the scene has boomed around them. Nevertheless, I could tell this was a place with a lot of history, and I was definitely glad to visit. It was here that my wife and I decided to ring in the new year (2012), and while not the most glamorous of venues for such an event, we had to improvise, and kind of just picked it as one of the few places that was open until after midnight + that we had not gone to yet on our beercation. There was a band playing, so...blah. But otherwise, the place had a nice vibe: gritty and dark, but large enough to lose out on intimacy. The bar was fairly large, and there are plenty of tables and chairs, plus a pool room, and a shady video gaming lounge in the back. Service was spotty and the bartender was pretty aloof, but he was working on New Year's Eve, so what could I expect? A good selection of 20+ beers on tap, lots of local stuff, and plenty of crafts and micros in bottles. Food was decent, and prices were reasonable.
01-04-2012 05:43:54 | More by Rifugium
4.22/5 rDev -0.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Met up with BA MSUBulldog here for a few beers. Great Place.
Draft list of just over 20 beers. Most are local/regional: Rogue, Hood, Walking Man, Butte Creek, Laurelwood, Deschuttes, Lucky Lab, etc plus a few Belgians and one or two Germans.
Expansive bottle selection (over 100 solid bottles): I drank a Fantome Strange Ghost (They also had Chocolate), a Krystalweizen, and an Ale Smith IPA. At least 20 of the current Best of BA list were available. Almost all the bottles were outstanding brews and many of them were rather uncommon. They also featured several imports from breweries I was entirely unfamiliar with, namely a Brazilian brewer that makes German and Belgian styles and Scandinavian brewer that produces a lot of American style crafts. I wish I had had more time to try some of these.
The new owner showed us a list she was putting together of all their beers. It was well organized and included accurate descriptions of each beer. I was impressed. She was very friendly and offered a sample or two from the taps.
I had a burger that was just to die for. It had perfectly ripened avocado and outstanding, butcher shop quality smoked bacon on it. Im not a big burger person and usually stick to other options but this was really, really great.
The atmosphere was the only thing that wasnt special but in a way that was almost a good thing. It let me focus on the beer cooler, which I stared at drooling for most of our visit to CAH.
Side Note: If youre in Downtown Portland for just a few days dont neglect this area over downtown. CAH is just a 15 minute cab ride or so from downtown and doesnt really cost all that much. Its also two minute walk away form Kennedy School and just a 4 or 5 minute cab ride from the Horse Brass/Belmont Station. Those 4 places make for a great afternoon of beer drinking. Theres also public transportation between all these places if you have time to wait for the bus.
07-06-2007 15:27:46 | More by DaPeculierDane
4.8/5 rDev +12.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | $$
Loved this place, and it was a little too clean to be a dive bar (which I like), and it has a sort of "unconcerned" look to the decor. Tables, bar, all practical and meant to function, but they obviously work to keep it clean and neat. Counted 22 taps--I drank ST. Bernardus ABT 12, Ninkasi Fresh Hop, Walking Man Knuckle Dragger, and Bend Brewing Hop Head in my brief stop. Not a bad stop. I'm planning a trip to the Northwest with a friend, and this is at the top of my list to show him. Didn't get to the three coolers of bottles behind the bar.
Bartender was attentive and friendly, teaching dominoes to a waitress, but never missed seeing when my glass got to the bottom and he was there in an instant. The boss was at the other end of the bar, and was complaining about the sunny days and the lack of business there of. Evidently, rain means friends in the pub in Portland, which explains all the pubs and coffee shops.
I didn't eat, but the food looked very above average pub grub. One guy stopped in for a take out order and didn't have a beer--never a bad sign.
Take the time, make the stop.
11-11-2006 16:41:07 | More by FightingEntropy
4.18/5 rDev -1.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
CAH is just 5 blocks from our house and has so quickly become our favorite - it's kinda scary! We go a minimum of once a week because we love the food, the friendly service, the comfortable vibe, and the BEER of course.
As others have mentioned, they have a huge bottled beer selection - many obscure micros and exotic internationals. The draft menu changes weekly (with 20 or more available at any time). This week's menu (in mid-January 2006) stated that they had served 187 different beers on tap so far and they've only been open since spring 2005. Prices seem reasonable and servers are knowledgable and/or are willing to provide samples or go ask someone if you have any questions about what you're drinking.
CAH serves breakfast on weekends and lunch/dinner 7 days a week. The fare is typically burgers, sandwiches, pasta, etc. though there are always weekly specials, too (oysters, catfish, turkey, ham, ravioli, who knows what else?). Haven't yet eaten anything there we didn't enjoy. Serving portions are big, too.
Nearby Kennedy School used to be our main neighborhood hangout, but since we've found Concordia we have yet to go back to KS.
01-20-2006 17:14:39 | More by msubulldog25
Concordia Ale House in Portland, OR
94 out of 100 based on 40 ratings.