The Secret Society116 NE Russell Portland, OR 97212 Northeast Portland & near North Portland
(503) 493.3600 - Visit Website
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BarFly's Review of The Secret Society
Those with a long, weathered Portland memory (the sort of pan-drunken historical mastery possessed by BarFly) will know this not merely as Disjecta’s original art-party site a decade back, but also—along with the Viscount—one of Portland’s best-preserved vintage speakeasies.
The tiny upstairs drinking lounge, which now often serves as waiting room for the ever-packed Toro Bravo beneath—abuts a massive ballroom and excessively swanky recording space.
So treat it like you should, and order no drink conceived beyond the days of Hemingway: Sazerac and Absinthe and Old-Fashioned, Cuba Libre only perhaps. Without romance there is nothing, and here there is romance if you only select the note-perfect cup.
The red-couched “ladies’ lounge” is large and plush as the bar itself, and looks more like an opium den than an anteroom to anything as pedestrian as a bathroom stall; we place our ginger bets it has served similar purpose.
But take note: this society is small but no longer so secret, and on concert weekends at the Wonder you’ll ungladly suffer the incongruous suburban and loudly halter-topped.
Getting to The Secret Society
Reader ReviewsAdd your own review or comment
Three of us over-60 women climbed the many stairs to arrive at 4:45, only to be told by the bartender that they don't open until 5. They had couches outside the bar, so we sat and waited. At 5 pm by all of our watches, we entered the bar again and were immediately told that we still had another 6 minutes to wait !! Unbelievably poor management, rude, no smiles, and we were the only customers there. Why the hell don't they keep the front door locked until 5? We promptly walked out and will never return.
This haunted time capsule of a sweet spot has a full bar* of fine, historically educational drinks, lovely and talented societal hosts, and just a few seats...with a regal ladies room as grand as the bar room itself.
Sit upon antique sofa's, pore over the old photographs of the original "secret society" hung hither and tither, or give yourself an excuse to dress in your fancy retro 30-40's git-ups, lick a nice spit curl unto your brow and sip yourself into the corner while reading a few racy Anais Nin verses... *(a Bulleit only establishment so far as the bourbon spirit goes)
Psst! Try not to tell any of your more barbaric allies/alter-egos (bless us all! and celebrate 'em elsewhere, they'll only feel restrained by the civility and hush)
Overall Rating of The Secret Society
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