The restaurant and bar scene is exploding in Portland. It seems like every week there’s another hot spot opening or landing on some list of Top Places You Need to Visit RIGHT NOW. Then there’s Rosie’s Bar and Restaurant.
In business since 1987, Rosie’s set out to be the best neighborhood bar it could be. Nothing fancy, just reliable pub food in a relaxed atmosphere. And almost 30 years later, that’s exactly what they still do.
The menu includes classics like burgers, patty melts, salads, beef tenderloin, burritos, and fish and chips, although over time new items have popped up, like poutine, fried mac and cheese balls, and vegetarian black bean chipotle sliders. There are also several rotating nightly specials. (Our favorite is the 2-for-1 pizza on Mondays.) Rosie’s is really about doing the basics and doing them well. But for many, the draw is not the food – it’s the vibe. Rosie’s is the kind of place where everyone fits in. Regulars or solo visitors can sit at the bar and watch the game or chat with the bartenders, a couple can grab a cozy table for two by the window, a family can enjoy a meal out, and you and your co-workers can snag the big table out back, and maybe get in a round or two of darts while decompressing after a busy workday. Rosie’s is not fancy, it’s just comfortable.
When you go be sure to help yourself to a basket (or two) of the free freshly popped popcorn, and don’t forget to sample one of the two house brews: Hooker Pale or Hooker Brown Ale, a nod to Portland’s past when the working waterfront had more than one meaning. The staff is friendly and attentive, and many of them have been there for a decade or more. When other bars are overflowing and standing room only, Rosie’s is often the perfect oasis in the Old Port, a place where you can find a table, grab a drink, and rub elbows with actual Portlanders.