Cocktails, Travel

Portland, Librarian Style: Multnomah Whiskey Library

I was at a bridal shower, sitting in a corner chatting with my very cool cousin-in-law, when I said, “do you think it’s too early to order a whiskey?”

“Oh, let’s,” she said, even though it was just past noon, and everyone else was drinking sparkling wine that went with our salads and cute petit fours.

She’s my kind of girl.

Then we got to talking about our fall travel plans, and I said I was going to Portland for work.

“Oh, you have to go to Multnomah Whiskey Library,” she said.

She was right. As a librarian whose great love is whiskey, knew I had to go. I enlisted a couple other librarians to make a reservation to visit while we were in town for the YALSA Symposium.Multnomah Whiskey Library

The Multnomah County Whiskey Library is tucked between two restaurants on an unassuming block in downtown Portland. Up a flight of stairs is a wonderful world of dark leather, a warm fireplace, low lights, and three walls of whiskey and other spirits just waiting to be sampled. Multnomah Whiskey Library in Portland, OR

Though there is a cover charge for non-members who want a reservation, it was entirely worth the experience, in my opinion. The chances of getting a table without a reservation are slim—even on a chilly, rainy, weeknight, as we left, the host was telling a party there was no chance of getting a table that night.

whiskey library

There are lots of cozy wingback chairs and loveseats nestled together for smaller groups, or a long research table like you would in a research library, complete with green lamps. There’s even a fireplace.

whiskey library menu

There are almost a thousand types of whiskey to choose from, and the expert bartenders help guide us through the menu, as it was comprehensive and a bit overwhelming.Multnomah County Whiskey Library

I sampled two different kinds of whiskey and a cocktail while snacking on a cheese plate. While it was fun for a special occasion, I still prefer drinking my Slow and Low Rock ‘n Rye on the couch in sweat pants curled up with a good book most evenings. But for a night out in Portland, the whiskey library was perfect.

What’s your favorite kind of whiskey? 

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