503 Distilling Opens Cocktail Lounge in Southeast Portland

503 Distilling of Portland, Oregon, has opened the doors on its new cocktail lounge adjacent to the distillery in Southeast Portland’s Brooklyn neighborhood. The company, best known for its ready-to-drink canned cocktails and craft spirits, has taken the typical distillery tasting room concept to the next level in this new space.

The cocktail lounge offers six rotating cocktails on draft, plus made-to-order cocktails, beer, and wine, as well as reinvented Indian street food from Chaat Wallah, a new venture from the operators of the DesiPDX food cart. The draft cocktails offer visitors first tastes of some unique new creations, while also serving as a laboratory for the distillery, where they can glean real-time feedback from guests on new recipes in development. 

“We love hearing what people think of our draft creations before we commit to canning a larger batch,” said Dave Schleef, 503 Distilling’s president, in a press release. “We’ve been able to make more thoughtful decisions about our ready-to-drink canned cocktail line through this process–plus, we get to spend more time with visitors to our distillery in a laid-back environment full of great food and drinks.”

At its previous Oregon City location, 503 Distilling’s cocktails on draft resulted in the canning of Five-0-Tea and Huckleberry Lemonade, which is among the best-selling ready-to-drink cocktails in the region. 

“We’re excited for this opportunity to collaborate with 503 Distilling and serve food out of this beautiful space they’ve created,” said Chaat Wallah owner and chef Deepak Saxena. “The complex, spice-laden flavors of Indian food are a perfect match for the drinks that they are serving, and we look forward to adding more items to our menu as we grow.” 

Along with their food, visitors to the lounge can order from a menu of handcrafted lounge classic cocktails, or choose from any of the six cocktails on draft. Current draft selections include the Roll In the Hay, featuring 503’s Gambler Whiskey with grapefruit, ginger and peach bitters; Brooklyn Yard, with 503 Vodka, fresh rhubarb and blackberry; and the Hot Tammy, with Circa 17 Gin, tamarind, bird’s eye chili and strawberry. 

503 Distilling’s bottled spirits and canned cocktails are available to purchase at the lounge, and draft cocktails can be purchased to-go. The Cocktail Lounge is open from 3 pm to 9 pm Thursday through Saturday, and 1 pm to 7 pm on Sundays. 503 Distilling is located at 4784 SE 17th Avenue, suite 150, in Portland, along the MAX line in the Iron Fireman Collective building. 

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