This spare little storefront eatery in Northeast Portland is a destination for its finger-licking Texas- and Carolina-style barbecue. Smokemaster Rodney Muirhead’s dry rubs and puckery vinegar-based sauces are good enough to convert those who swear by wet ’cue. It’s hard to choose between the brisket, pulled pork, and ribs (lamb ribs were stringy, but tasty), so try a combo plate…or the amazing-looking smoked prime rib, served châteaubriand-style à deux. Sides are formidable, particularly the savory collard greens, though the dry, unsweet cornbread (perfect for sopping up pot liquor) will have adherents and detractors. Portions are ample, though you’ll have room for Podnah’s one dessert, a pecan pie made with leaf lard and Steen’s cane syrup. Caveat: There aren’t many tables, and when Muirhead runs out of meat each day, choices can be limited…and there’s the real rub. Go early, or do like the neighbors and call ahead for takeout. (KA)
Signature dish: Pulled pork—’cue dreams are made of this.
Standouts: The vinegary barbecue sauce on every table is just begging to be bottled and sold.
Regrets: Occasional waits and running out of food. Go early.