Portland >Food & Dining > Twenty First Avenue Bar-Grill
721 NW 21st Ave, Portland, OR | Directions 9720945.528157 -122.694491
Neighborhoods: Northwest District, Neighbors West - Northwest
Good food, HORRENDOUS service – I've been here a few times, and this was the worst... but also the last! I realize they are busy during peak hours (happy hour, etc), but management should staff appropriately or else this crap happens! My party of 6 sat on the patio- which is beautiful- and waited endlessly to put in a drink order, and then finally food. When the food was brought out, no napkins. I had to flag down another waitress who never even brought them. When we asked for the check, the waitress was perturbed that we were splitting it. We wrote it out neatly as to who was paying what, and when she returned with change she didn't even thank us for our sevice. I work in the industry and have for years, and that's just unacceptable. I get it if you're busy, but if you're gonna give me attitude on top of bad service, there goes your tip. Fabulous take on a BLT with avacado and swiss, but DANG that was the worst freaking service ever. Everyone else is right- go elsewhere.
Ugh, AVOID at all costs – This place is horrible. I actually went into this place last night after work after looking up a decent bar online. I should've read the reviews... When I sat down I was greeted with a, "oh, so do you want a drink or something?" with her immediately walking away. I then grab her attention and put in my drink order. Only for her to fill 6 other people's orders that approached after me (separate parties) before I walked out.
The back patio is nice but do not waste your time. The place is an absolute disgust. The staff can all go to hell in my opinion.
Beautiful Koi Pond and Patio out Back! – The restaurant side of 21st Bar and Grill is pretty decent, featuring artwork by local artists hung nicely on the walls. However, the bar side is indeed pretty divvy. Forget about that and head straight back to the deck. Their patio is AMAZING!
On to the rest... Ok, I don't mind dive bars, I fit in just as well there as I do at a nice restaurant in The Pearl. It sounds like some of the previous reviewers (is it more than one, or just someone who has a serious beef with the owner) may not enjoy dive bars. The weird thing is, once you make it past the deteriorating bar to the patio out back, it's like walking into a completely different place. It's really peaceful and nice. They have an amazing Koi pond, with a waterfall and incredible japanese style landscaping... Picture drinking a beer, and/or having a burger in the Japanese Gardens.
The wait staff was very pleasant to me (on the patio). However, I did witness the bartender yelling at a customer inside, I don't know if she had a legitimate beef or not. But like I said, forget the inside and head straight back to the patio. You will love it... Unless you hate beautiful things, good food, nature, and an escape from the hustle and bustle just outside the building. In that case, I doubt you're happy anywhere.
Rude service and bad food – Listen, I eat out all the time. I was hoping for a simple dive bar with simple food. What I got was all bad attitude, no service, a burger with a hair in it, waitstaff that didn't care, and yelled at when I asked for something else off the menu.
Don't waste your time at the 21st Ave Bar and Grill. Plenty of other dives around NW.
No Good – If you hate good times, great service, and good food then this is the place for you.
In a nutshell, I have given this place three chances, and they have struck out. Every time I have gone into this desolate hole in the wall I am repeatedly appalled by my experience. The worst part has to be the service. I am curious as to why this staff is troubled by the sight of customers. I have been berated about anything from drink & food orders being too complicated (that is placing a drink & food order) to apparently not given acceptable forms of payment. I?m sorry that I don?t open a tab everywhere I go.
But there is good news about the 21st Avenue Bar & Grill. It is next to other decent places. Go across the street and save the anxiety that comes from stepping through these doors.
Do not go to this place!!! – This wouldn't be a bad place if the owner/management would never go into it again. I think the owner and managers are under some sort of belief that 21av bar is located on Rodeo drive LA and they are better than all the customers. The beer is fine it's hard to screw that up, the food is all deep fried nasty bar food so if you are into that.... Basically shocked on how horrible the owner and managers handle themselves around paying customers. I would suggest that you don?t give your money to these people I would literally feel better flushing it down the toilet.
horrible customer service – I like the food here but I am repeatably disappointed in the customer service. It takes a long time to get the food and the atmoshere is dark, smoky and dingy.
Can't recommend it.
Surpisingly good food, great patio – This is a great place considering it looks like a dive bar from the outside. The smoking section is, in fact, a little dive-y, but the other half is more upscale, giving you the option to go with either environment. The patio is one of the best in NW Portland. It doesn't seem like the kind of place that would have good food, but the menu ROCKS. I have never had a bad meal at the place. The drinks are strong and the bartenders nice. The owners seem nice enough; maybe a little frat-boyish but thats OK. Another reviewer rails the owner so hard they appear to be a furious ex-employee or jilted lover or something.
The only thing I would caution is it can get really crowded late at night on a weekend, but that might be because its usually open later than other bars around it.
Only a new owner can fix this – Poor management, lazy service and inconsisent recipes.The owner should either learn the behavior of a host to his guests and a supervisor to his staff or (likely a better idea) go into a business that doesn't require direct contact with his clientele and hire a staff manager for his employees....to the benefit of all. Service is spotty and the food mediocre. It is unfair to his customers and staff when he refuses to accept the responsibilities of ownership. He is clearly in it only for the money and none of the fun or privilege of being a small business owner.
All of this serves to explain the poor quality in every level and it will come as no surprise when failure will result in closure or the sale of the business to more deserving, caring and knowledgeable party.
Great urban hangout – If you are looking for a quiet, low-key romantic bar to get a cocktail, this isn't the place for you. However, when you want to hang out at a neighorhood bar that offers very good food (especially as far as bar food goes - the steaks are excellent), great drinks, video poker, or a great singles scene (they are the only bar open after 1AM on Portland's bustling 21st Ave) - then I strongly recommend stopping by.
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