Ter·mi·nus Noun: a final point in space or time; an end or extremity.
For life and business partners Louis Hindman and Kristi Schaffer, their respective day-job careers came to a halt early in 2019. Shaffer has been a Lents local for decades, and had worked a steady job until the layoff came in January 2019. Hindman had a good working gig too, but March 2019 rolled around and a layoff put an end to his career. For Hindman and Schaffer, their working lives had reached a point of terminus.
The Lents neighborhood in outer Southeast Portland was once a terminus too, back when the Mt. Scott Car Line came from downtown Portland, across the Hawthorne Bridge, and out to what was once the town of Lent. The terminus was a connection point for other interurban lines. By 1912, the town was incorporated into Portland, and Lent’s town became simply Lents. Lents has a working-class history, and in recent years the area around SE 92nd Avenue and Foster had become a rougher part of town. A notorious bar there was the scene of frequent police calls, and the neighborhood was calling for revitalization. Prosper Portland, the city’s economic and urban development agency, stepped in to help, launching a five-year action plan in 2014. Early phases of this redevelopment have already seen the opening of the Zoiglhaus brewpub, north of SE Foster on 92nd.
Shaffer already had come up with a goal of operating her own bottle shop business, and soon found a newly constructed building with an empty storefront on SE Woodstock, just west of 92nd. The location qualified for a Portland Grant opportunity, and Prosper Portland offered a women/minority owned business grant to the budding entrepreneur. A short couple of months later, Hindman was ready to join her in the venture, first by managing the bar buildout. The result is a clean, simple one-room watering hole, Terminus Bottle Shop and Tap, which opened for business at the end of August 2019 at 9133 SE Woodstock. Hindman is often in the kitchen, cooking up hot dogs and sliders to go with the draft beers. Schaffer spends time out on the taproom floor and at the bar.
Terminus is well-located in a neighborhood that is developing more high-density housing, in the process becoming more walking-accessible. This is a neighborhood pub, welcoming anyone from anywhere, owned and operated by locals. There’s a short menu of simple snacks, sixteen taps of craft beer and cider, and a few coolers with cans and bottles. You want a hot dog or sliders with your beer? They’ll do that for you with a smile. Feel up to doing a trivia contest on a Tuesday evening? Schaffer will call out the questions and let you figure out the answers. Show up on a Monday and there will be a keg special, featuring a buck off selected drafts. It’s just what your neighborhood bar does.
There are plenty of other neighborhoods more or less saturated with dining options and quality beer bars, so it’s good to see a little of the good life out in Lents. Hindman and Schaffer have created their own Terminus, and it’s a comfortable place to grab a craft beer and hang out with friends. Make it part of a local pub crawl, calling in at the Terminus and Zoiglhaus. It’s just what the neighborhood needed.
Terminus Bottle Shop and Taproom 9133 SE Woodstock Boulevard Portland, OR Phone: 503-477-4201
Don Scheidt has been into good beer since before the dawn of craft brewing in the Pacific Northwest. He created the Northwest Brewpage, a regional guide to good beer in Oregon and Washington, back in the mid-1990s, but has since retired it. Don started writing the Washington state “Puget Soundings” column for Celebrator Beer News in 1998, and continues to do that today. Don also wrote about beer for the Seattle Weekly in 2005-2006.