As of tonight, two new places to drink are officially open within a block on NW 23rd avenue. So pick a nice, quiet night when the Timbers aren't playing (if you're not present at the game, you do NOT want to be within a mile of the stadium afterwards) and head over to the West side for cocktails and dinner:

The Fireside has been testing the waters in the old Music Millenium spot with soft openings for the past week, and opens its doors to the public tonight. Promising a game-heavy kitchen to match the comfort suggested by the establishment's name, the cocktails I was lucky enough to sample from part-owner and veteran bartender Sue Erickson were flipping awesome. A delicate yet assertive shaken drink selection offers darker alternatives to a vermouth-heavy (no complaints here) stirred side of the menu. I am both thrilled and scared (mostly for my savings account) that their bar is within stepping distance of my home.
The Fireside is located at 801 NW 23rd.

The Huckleberry Pub, named for what strikes me as an excruciatingly seasonal berry, began their opening weekend on Friday in the former Northwest Public House spot on Kearney. I haven't been in, despite it's similar proximity to my house, but Eater reports that they offer a "seasonal, Northwest slant to comfort food." I guess I'm having a hard time getting past the fact that huckleberries are only in season for a few weeks out of every year. What do they serve when their namesake food is NOT IN SEASON? Has anyone been already? I want to know.
Huckleberry Pub is located at 2327 NW Kearney.