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BESAW'S


Fine Dining in NW Portland
NOW OPEN at NW 21st & Raleigh! 
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BESAW'S


Fine Dining in NW Portland
NOW OPEN at NW 21st & Raleigh! 
Sign up for our mailing list here.

HOMEGROWN SINCE 1903


VISIT

1545 NW 21st AVENUE | PORTLAND, OREGON 97209


RESERVATIONS

503.228.2619 | contact@besaws.com


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ABOUT


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ABOUT


OUR HISTORY

In 1903 two gentlemen, George Besaw and Medric Liberty, dreamed of starting their own beer parlor and gambling hall. At the time, a booming industry full of loggers, longshoremen and their families were populating much of this vibrant corner of the Northwest. Loggers themselves, George Besaw and Medric Liberty received the generous help of Henry Weinhard, one of the best known brewery owners in the nation at that time, to finance their dream. An immediate success with locals and visitors alike, Besaw’s was conveniently located en route to the 1905 Lewis & Clark Exposition, a grand outdoor bazaar akin to the Worlds’ Fair, attracting many of the Northwest’s– not to mention the world’s– elite. With the onset of prohibition, the duo was faced with a difficult decision: either cease the service of alcohol or close the doors on their dream.

Ultimately Mr. Liberty sold his half to Mr. Besaw, who introduced simple home cooking once he was the sole proprietor. After Prohibition was repealed, Besaw’s was granted the first liquor license in the state of Oregon. The Besaw family honed the time honored tradition of offering hearty food and memorable experiences at a good value.  The stories of the late and infamous Clyde Besaw, with his decades of service to the neighborhood, still ring out over many a cold beer.

As the cafe became the most popular meeting place in the neighborhood, with a reputation for a stiff drink, a scrumptious meal and lively conversation – its core foundation was clear. Besaw’s ethos is a simple one: providing delicious, seasonal and local food and drink, with genuine warmth of heart. 

Please join us in 2016 as we celebrate Besaw's latest chapter; our beautiful new space is located at 1545 NW 21st Avenue.