A blog about food in Thailand
and elsewhere.


Posted date:  October 27, 2010


Am home in Oregon for a couple weeks. I’m particularly excited about this visit as my buddy Hock also happens to be in-state, doing a temporary cheffing stint in Portland, and via his numerous visits to Thailand, I’ve become good friends with Andy, chef/owner of Portland restaurants Pok Pok, Whiskey Soda Lounge and Ping.

One of my first meals in at home was at Podnah’s, a Texas-style barbecue joint in NE Portland where Hock was doing his stage:


I grew up in the US, but haven’t really been much of anywhere outside of the west coast, and my understanding of barbecue — like that of many Americans — began and ended at backyard-style grilled meats. Southern- and Texas-style barbecue is a different beast altogether, and involves smoking — not grilling — meats over a low temperature for several hours. It was this unique technique that Hock came to Oregon learn.

The kind folks at Podnah’s put together a something of a sampler platter spanning their best barbecue (pictured at the top of this post): pork ribs, pulled pork and beef brisket. Apparently the pork ribs are a highlight, but I preferred the slight fattiness of the beef brisket. The pulled pork, served on slices of white bread, was also very good, and like all the meats, had a flavour and texture more in common with smoked than grilled food. The meats were accompanied by some tasty in-house made sauces, ranging from a smokey/spicy chili-based sauce to a tart vinegar-based one that I really enjoyed.

I particularly enjoyed the sides, which included a crunchy potato salad, baked beans, excellent savoury cornbread and possibly my favourite dish of the meal, something called Frito chili pie:


a spicy, bean-free chili served over Fritos corn chips and topped with cheese and thin slices of onion.

It was all a bit meat overload for me, but I really enjoyed the meal, particularly the communal serving style, which I thought had much in common with Asian-style dining.

Podnah’s Pit Barbecue
1469 NE Prescott St, Portland, OR
(503) 281-3700

View Larger Map

2 Comments for Podnah’s

Reading your newest entry makes me think how much local food I take for granted here in Texas. Everything you had is a staple down here, and I probably had my first Frito Pie (Fritos were invented in Dallas) when I was about 6. Glad to hear they are doing Texas right up there in Portland!
Always enjoy the blog!

I’m living in Chiang Mai for a year, one of the few places where I thought I’d never miss home for reasons of food.

However, I’m from Portland, where our place is quite close to Podnahs, and I swear I’ve lost 10lbs just from moving far from it. This post just transported my stomach halfway across the planet. I can smell the smoker…

Are they not serving the pie in the Frito bags anymore?! Gotta eat it off the bag for the authentic experience 😉

Wanna say something?