Embers11 NW Broadway Portland, OR 97209
Phone: (503) 222.3082
Located in: Northwest Portland & near Downtown Portland - Visit Website
BarFly's Review of Embers
This venerable 43-year-old gay dance club has one helluva bar that doubles as a fish tank. About a mile long and as impressive as a movie pimp's shoes, one could literally stare at the little microcosm beneath your beer coaster for hours. Beyond that, there are drag shows and dancing nearly every night in this massive downtown space. Don't come for the food, rather come for the hilarious karaoke, colorful mixed crowd, and to walk through something referred to as the “glamor tunnel”. Be sure to check out the cleverly stocked vending machine that dispenses breath mints, loosey cigarettes, and Chapstick.
Cover $5-8 (usually free Tuesdays & Thursdays).
Open 11am-2:30am M-F, 2pm-2:30am Sat & Sun.
Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm everyday.
Mon-Friday- All day
$1 “Embers Lager” (Natty Ice)
Sunday: Latino night (Popular) in the back, Karaoke in the front
Drag shows: Wed-Sat
|Embers's Happy Hours|
|Monday||Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm|
|Tuesday||Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm|
|Wednesday||Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm|
|Thursday||Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm|
|Friday||Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm|
|Saturday||Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm|
|Sunday||Free popcorn and $2.00 well drinks 11am-8 pm|
Ace Cleaners at Ace Hotel, Bailey's Taproom, Benson Hotel, Blitz Pearl, Bo Restobar, Casey's Nightclub & Lounge, Club Rouge, Couture Ultra Lounge, Dante's, Darcelle XV, Davis Street Tavern, Dirty, Dixie Tavern, East Chinatown Lounge, El Gaucho, Ground Kontrol, Hamburger Mary's (CLOSED), Hobo's, Imperial, Isabel's Cantina, Jimmy Mak's, Kincaid's Fish Chop and Steak House, Life of Riley Tavern, Living Room Theater, Local Choice Produce Market, Magic Gardens, Mary's Club, Mucho Grande, Pazzo, Pizza Vita PDX, Portland City Grill, Portland Prime, Republic, Roseland, Santeria, Saucebox, Silver Dollar Pizza II, Silverado, Splash Bar, Star Theater, Sweet Masterpiece, The Barrel Room, Rockin' Show Bar, The Crown Room, The Original, Tube, Tugboat Brewing Company, Urban Studio
the last time I was in the Embers was 1969...it was hip, cool, and made the best drinks..and they had the fish tank bar then too.I used to work at the Palm Gardens and on Monday's we'd all go to Embers...rockin'...
Visiting from SLC, and attempting to find a decent watering hole to dance at, I bar hopped into Embers on a late Thursday night. The front area had some drag show which I immediately skipped and headed into the back dance floor. The sonic aura of the back dance floor is so far the best I've found here, with pumping beats of good dance music. It's a shame I was the only person there. Didn't stop me from tearing up the dance floor, but it would have been far better had a few other people been there.
Unrelated sidenote: What's with the "Cash Only" bar in this town??
I Have been goin to embers for about 1 year or so and it has ggotten better Music wise. let me tell you this they have a bucket of coronas for only $10 THATS GREAT!!! well first you need to know its latino night, But You Should Know:
9pm to 11:30ish or 12 Midnight--Best Club & Hip Hop Remixes.
12 to 1am----Regional Mexican, Reggaeton,Latin Music.
1am to 2:30---- Club Trance and house music.
But best of all I like the big Bass when i Dance, I can feel the beats in my chest and when im drunk in the middle of the dance floor i feel happy untill they close. :( But i just cant wait for Sunday again, ahhh and the Dj is so CUTE and he is so good with requests and i think he is the only one in portland who will play your requested song.
well guys see you later Dont listen to this other guys, they probably got fired haha!!!
Wow, maybe its the irony that you see as you age but I have newfound respect for the Embers. The bad drag shows and badly dressed clientele combined with the desperate meat market vibe on the dance floor is pure comedy! Was I ever this desperate? UGH, I hope not! But if I was, I hope I provided some comic relief to those standing by and laughing at me. Seriously, this place is awesome...so tragic and bad its GOOD! Like bad fast food, you know it will make you sick, is bad for you and has no nutritional value, but it still feels good to consume!
Can I get a side of fries with my Embers please?
I used to spend many an evening at Embers from about 94 thru 01, and have only occasionally dropped in since. I was a crossdresser. I met many friends there, helped other TG people with their quest, etc. I have a lot of great memories. The Chrismas decorations were awesum, same on many other hollidays. In recent years the vibe is not as good. The drag shows aren't very good. I wonder if the performing drag queens get paid at all. I do however sympathise with Embers about the rowdies causing the OLCC to close them and leave them on probation perhaps indefinitely. So now it's weak drinks, heavy security. Purses get robbed a lot there when people step out on the dance floor. It's got to be frustrating for Steve, as it is for the rest of us. I like that you can be anybody, and be comfortable there, and fun atmosphere. If they could just turn down the volume a tiny bit.
This place SUCKS. Just plain and simple -- it sucks. I've been in there abou 4 times in 6 years and everytime I go back it's worse than the last time. Don't waste your time when there are so many other good bars in the area.
So I hit this place up a couple times a year JUST to see if the decor/music/drag queens/bitter ugly trannie at the bar who gets offended if you invade "her" space has changed, and guess what? IT IS STILL THE SAME SHITTY BAR!
Seriously, avoid at all costs...it used to be hoppin' after the breeders found out it played decent music like 8 yrs ago, now it's just sad sad SAD! How does this joint stay open? Fucking horrible drinks, drag queens who don't know the lyrics to songs and the worst music in Portland.
If you want to go dancing, go to Holocene or Eagle on their queer nights...If you are straight and want a walk on the "Wild" side, just go to Silverado.
I have been going into Embers for a fwe years and it has gone downhill a bit. Charging 10 bucks for beads on Mardi Gras?! Give me a break. And FYI,they took out the popcorn machine. Too bad, It was pretty good.Or maybe I was too drunk?
Great service and atmosphere. Gets old if you go there too much, but now and then it is great. My only complaint is that back in 99-2001 their drag shows were much, much better. They were upbeat and wild; great performances. Now it is simply a 1 on a scale of 1-10. The shows are made up like a Broadway show and each 'skit' is drug out forever. No one wants to see Mary Poppins four times a night or listen to one clucking drag queen talk about himself for 15 minutes, step off the stage, then introduce himself as the next performer, demand clapping, then ... start talking again for another 15 minutes. What I am saying is if you are going for the drag show, don't bother. For dancing on the front side, late night, with usually no line - I say it is a 10. Open until 4, but they won't let you in after 2. Makes sense. The open-until-4 is really to let people dance and sobber up more than anything else.
I think that Embers is such a great place, I live in a little tiny town, and I came to Embers and I met my Boyfriend, so Really, I give embers a ten
I doubt very much Linda Lee will be coming back from Missouri (if she is still alive, she would have been 77 on last Columbus Day).
It should be noted that the owner, Steve Suss, publicy announced in his bar at lunchtime the day after the Nov election that he voted Yes on 36 stating "his Catholic faith dictated" he do so. This from a man who has profited from the GLBT community for many years. This is the epitome of hypocrisy. Don't give this man your money!
A couple of years back, there was a big hub-bub with a bar fight involving someone who'd snuck in (and was under age).
Since then, they're pretty tight about checking ID, watch folks' drunk-level a lot tighter, have better security and close around 2:30-3 after the show out front most nights.