Podnah’s Pit: For the Love of BBQ

Have you ever had a run-in with food so miraculous it could pass as a near religious experience?  A meal so amazing it haunted your dreams for weeks, leaving you to wake utterly ravenous, and terrified that you may never taste it’s sweet deliciousness again?   Rest assured that you are not alone.

A friend of ours had been hassling us for weeks about this place called Podnah’s Pit up on Killingsworth, using such flowery language and exaggerated detail that we were sure he had to be embellishing his stories just a wee bit.  “Oh, the ribs are amazing,” he would say in half-trance while rubbing his belly and licking his lips.  It wasn’t hard for him to convince us to check it out (really, he had me at “ribs”) and we agreed to meet him for a late dinner last Saturday night.

It took nearly an hour to get seated – something not uncommon for Portland’s more popular restaurants – and by the time our chance to order was up the waitress almost reduced my friend to tears when she announced they were plumb out of ribs.  “That’s it”, we thought while watching our neighbors mow down on the very last order of the tender, fall-off-the-bone goodness we wouldn’t have the opportunity to taste, “our night is ruined.”

Boy, were we mistaken.  Podnah’s Pit BBQ is hands-down one of the best places I’ve ever eaten.  Everything – and I really mean everything – we ate was mind-blowing, from the two-inch thick pork loin I ordered, to the brisket on Allen’s plate that had been smoked for 10 hours.  Collards, BBQ beans, and green chili mac & cheese.  Pints of Oregon brews, slices of pecan pie, and cornbread so buttery and sweet you could eat the whole tin.  We walked out at closing with shaky knees, bulging bellies, and a full-grown infatuation with our new favorite place in town.

I could go on for pages – about how the pit crew drags their rear’s out of bed at 5:00 every morning to get the meat going, or all the press and acclaim Rodney Muirhead has received since opening the joint back in 2006 – but time is short and I only grow more hungry with every word typed.  Instead, I encourage you to try Podnah’s yourself, and then report back to us about your eating adventure!

Until next time, we are Allen Jones and Angie Johnson, and we love to EAT.

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