What to do when it's too hot to do anything? An air-conditioned brewery will do the trick. Ben and I visited Baerlic a couple of weeks ago in the last heat wave (hi, second heatwave that's melting off my skin) when we were bored of watching TV in front of the fans and mewling about the weather. We decided to load up in the car in the coolest outfits we could find, use AC on the short drive to Baerlic, and sat inside in blasting AC to sip some cream ale and play cribbage. There's not much better than that on a 100-degree-er.
We hadn't tried Baerlic Brewing, even though it's on the inner SE side of Portland and a 10 minute drive from our house. They don't have any food made in-house, but they're near quite a few restaurants and allow you to order in from the sports bar next door. We decided to drink beer and then walk the few blocks to Lardo down the road to eat dirty fries and massive sandwiches instead of ordering in. Their most popular and most well known beer is the Cavalier cream ale, which was surprisingly delicious and refreshing. We actually got a pint of this after the taster.
The rest of the regular beers were comprised of your run-of-the-mill IPA (not the best I've had, but I have tried just about every IPA there is available to me and think I've already had the bests of the bunch), a good NW brown ale, a stout and a pilsner (not my style of beer, so I focused on the rest). They also offer a lot of seasonal and rotating taps of experimental ales.
With games, a good close-in location in SE Portland, and a delicious cream ale, Baerlic deserves a spot on your AC tour of Portland this weekend. Oh, and they have very cute, very soft Baerlic tees.