What: The High Dive

Where: 1406 SE 12th Ave. 503-384-2285

Why: It’s a 12-table rustic-modern hole in the wall with lots of knotty pine, located just north of Cartopia, the bustling food cart pod at SE 12th and Hawthorne. Co-owner and bartender Bob Jones is an affable fellow who pours a stiff (and affordable) drink. "We just a wanted a neighborhood bar to drink in," he says, and that’s certainly the case here. The High Dive had a "friends and family" opening on New Year’s Eve, and since that time, Jones has developed a symbiotic relationship with the food carts next door, encouraging patrons to visit Cartopia, buy something, and then eat it at The High Dive, accompanied by one of his four tap beers (currently Rogue Yellow Snow IPA, Ninkasi IPA, Burnside Brewing’s Oatmeal Pale, and PBR) or a $5 glass of Jameson’s Whiskey.

Crowds are sporadic for the time being, but once the warm weather returns, and the outdoor seating is set up, late-night Cartopia revelers will finally have a place to clink their glasses. Jones’s short-term plans include getting a specialty cocktails menu and a TV up for Blazers games. As for me, I look forward to slipping next door for a fennel sausage pie from Pyro Pizza or an order of poutine from Potato Champion, and taking it back to the friendly confines of the High Dive for another glass of Jameson’s.