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Southland Whiskey Kitchen
Meat & whiskey: the solution to everything

This massive meat-n-bourbon emporium on trendy NW 23rd offerings a jolt of Texas style with a wood-laden dining room lit by wagon wheel-shaped chandeliers and enough charred meat and roadhouse charm to appease even James Dalton, plus enough throat-burning whiskey that you'll politely ask him to rip yours out.

A custom 2,600lb wood smoker can cook up to 600lbs of baby backs, beef brisket, house-stuffed sausage, and BBQ chicken -- all of which you can cover with five sauces after you order them individually along with baked beans and cornbread, or all together as the Master Platter, which is definitely not about Scientology meat, but is totally about Scientology meat. They've got steaks and fried chicken too, and if you require buns there's the Smokestack sandwich w/ pulled pork, sausage, brisket, horseradish slaw, and only slightly less danger to your health than its namesake, plus a fried catfish po'boy and a ground pork shoulder burger.

The bar mixes juleps and sours, but why would you add fruit to the 100+ whiskeys that give the joint its name, including rarities like Kentucky's Whistlepig Rye, Ireland's Middleton Very Rare, Oregon's own Whippersnapper, and Pappy Van Winkle 23 for $60 a glass -- which hopefully, unlike Dalton, is every bit as big as you thought it would be.

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1. Southland Whiskey Kitchen 1422 NW 23rd, Portland, OR 97210

On trendy NW 23rd, SWK stands out not for being flashy or extravagant, but by honoring food & drink basics and crafting a meat-and-bourbon emporium. In a wood-laden dining room lit by wagon wheel-shaped chandeliers, you can eat all the baby backs, beef brisket, house-stuffed sausage, and BBQ chicken you want, even though that quantity is probably way more than what would be healthy. All the food comes from the 2,6000 lb. wood smoker they've got, so you can eat knowing this is the best BBQ around.

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