Lori Lucas

The single hardest thing about quitting smoking is that it radically limits the number of bars you can go to, at least for a while: It's damn near impossible to maintain a non-smoking vow when (a) you're drunk, and (b) everyone around you is sucking down American Spirits like they're going out of style (note: they are). The prospect of quitting smoking and drinking, though, makes me want to chew through my knuckles. Luckily, there are enough good smoke-free bars out there that the aspiring non-smoker doesn't have to curtail their drinking, too.

Moloko Plus

3967 N Mississippi

Opened in the past year, Moloko Plus (formerly known by other aliases, including the Mississippi Social Club, they appear to have settled on this reference to the cocktail of milk and hallucinogen served in A Clockwork Orange) is creeping into the consciousness of those in the Mississippi neighborhood looking for a safe haven from the smoke walls encountered elsewhere. Small and sleek, Moloko's décor is like a whitewashed version of Tube, with the same modern, minimalist, and retro-Brit tone. Casual but stylish, and suited to the disheveled dapperness of our creative-working class, the mood here is set for relevant if slightly raucous cultural exchanges over bottles of imported beer and demi-gourmet sandwiches of sardines and sharp salami. MARJORIE SKINNER


600 E Burnside

"Non-smoking" is frequently code for "yuppie," as evidenced by the proliferation of non-smoking bars in the Pearl District. Bully for the Pearlies and their tender pink lungs, but it's hard to live a cancer-free lifestyle on the Eastside, where it seems like all the best bars come encased in a dense carcinogenic shroud. Rontom's, though, provides a nice alternative to the usual smoky suspects: Heavy on hipster, light on dive, the big, high-ceilinged bar boasts a swanky vintage-chic décor that includes a cozy "conversation pit," complete with fake fireplace. The good-looking staff draws an equally pretty clientele (if they do at times look a little lost without cigarettes in their hands), and the kitchen churns out comfort food with a dash of kitsch: fondue, Swedish meatballs, and deviled eggs are among the Midwestern tapas-style offerings. When the weather brightens up, rontom's also features an amazing back patio, where (presumably) smokers can do their thing. ALISON HALLETT


1300 NW Lovejoy

Hidden in a bunker under the Lovejoy OfficeMax, SoLo is a surprising haven for those seeking atmosphere, sensibly priced eats, and well-mixed drinks. The design works—some wood, some neon—and the bar is "reaching," as you'd expect for its location, but not beyond itself. The good-size TV screens Blazer games, making the bar an after-work hangout for the district's more friendly faces, and it's not uncommon for strangers to actually talk to each other in here (I know! Imagine...). The three-hour happy hour starts at 4 pm and offers $4 Manhattans and martinis, not to mention sturdy small plates from $2.50 to $5.50—including a bang-on bruschetta or Oysters Rockefeller, if you're so inclined. The restroom must be the most tranquil in town, with a spooky Zen feel and some lovely candles—just try not to spend too long in there, or you might freak out your companions. MATT DAVIS


4306 N Williams

If you are among the diminishing chorus of voices decrying the gentrification of North Portland, Vendetta is probably emblematic of everything you hate: an airy, laidback but anti-dive bar with a big, Eastern-influenced, bike-friendly back patio, alternative-diet accessible cheap-eats menu, and shuffleboard—an absolute dream for all the rich Californians and upwardly mobile young white couples buying up the place. But for those of us just passing through the neighborhood, it's a pleasant rest stop to grab a good drink and a bite in between work and a party, or for a leisurely afternoon conversation over drinks. Not quite a hipster scene, what with the distinct neighborhood feel, Vendetta is inclusive in a way that contradicts its name. MS