Category Archives: booze


porch swingBesides a two-finger bourbon and branch (you know: water), the Porch Swing has to be the classic BBQ cocktail.

And it’s kinda magical, too, because you don’t really taste its gin (it’s mos def in there), or its Pimm’s.

What you get is something that tastes a whole lot like what conservatives would call an Arnold Palmer and what liberals would call a Swamp Cooler.

In other words, it tastes like iced tea and lemonade, or, if you will, like a good sit on the porch swing as you watch the sun set itself.

In a way, it’s sorta like drinking a Tom Waits song. You know, one of those pretty, mid-90s nostalgic waltzes.



margaritaCinco de Mayo. In Mexico—and really, in just one Mexican town—it’s a day for celebration because years ago, the people in that town liberated it, and themselves, from French colonialists.

But north of the border, it’s a day to celebrate…well, no one’s really sure. But it’s probably because clever and enterprising marketers and advertisers simply used that date to promote the sale of imported Mexican beers to unsuspecting North Americans.

As our craft beer menu suggests, we encourage you to skip the yellow fizz that is Big Beer and go local instead.

And most of you are doing so. But if you’re looking to put your thumb in the big eye that’s Big Beer, and you’re truly intent on celebrating Cinco de Mayo (and let’s face it, if you’re jazzed about it, you may simple be looking for an excuse to get legless), have a Margarita instead.

Our is of the classic kind: tequila, triple sec, lime and lemon juices, a splash or orange in a salt-rimmed Mason jar.

So swing by and celebrate with a glass or two. Just make sure you order enough grub to give your tummy a nice meat cushion to absorb all that gullet-falling tequila.


teaYou can’t have a proper restaurant and not serve iced tea.

And you can’t have a barbecue joint and not sweeten that ice tea.

Which is why we do it both ways.

Of course, you can always ask us to cut that tea, sweetened or un, by Shirley Templing it into an Arnold Palmer with some lemonade,.

And lastly, you can always ask us to serve you your iced tea a fourth way by spiking your Arnold Palmer with a shot of vodka, turning thusly your AP into a John Daley.

Of course, if you do, cigarettes and ex-wives are sold separately.


ginger donkeyMuling a drink’s a cinch. All you need’s a glass, some ice, ginger ale, some spirits and a spoon to stir it.

We’d drink one, and so would you. Specially when it’s made with whiskey.

But add a splash of New Deal’s Ginger Liqueur, and you give this already kicky cocktail ever more kick.

A lot more kick. The spicy gingeryness of it all, and the bourbon kind, too.

So go ahead and prescribe yourself one of these old fashioned remedies the next time you’re in.

The bourbon’ll clear your blues.

The ginger’ll settle your tummy.

And the brisket’ll fill it up.

Huevos Rancheros

S21 huevosSooner or later, it seems that every Portland restaurateur inaugurates a brunch menu. All the cool kids are doing it. Or at least most of them are.

Well now you can add us to that list, too—er…sort of.

A while back we introduced our meal-worthy Spicy Bloody Mary, complete with a meat-and-pickled veggie salad and a spicy rub rim.

Now, to pair with that, we bring you what we’re calling Huevos Rancheros—Smokehouse-style.

Yeah, it’s only one brunch item, but here’s what you get: a double order of BBQ beans—chockablock, as always, with trimmings too small to make a meal out of (rib ends, brisket, that kinda thing)—topped with melted cheddar cheese, a pair of sunny side up eggs, a wide stripe of salsa, and garnishes of pickled onions and Fritos.

Of course, you can always personalize your own huevos with one of our four housemade sauces, to give your brunch smokey twist.

So drop by and dig in anytime between the hours of 11:30am and 4pm, any Saturday or Sunday.


peach whiskey sourIf you know us, then you know that pretty much nearly every one of us—front the front of the house to the back—is a Middle Westerner.

And when we swam across the Mississippi to earn our freedom, we brought with us a Midwestern delicacy that everyone knows as the Whiskey Sour.

So that’s emon, lime and Kentucky Bourbon with a peachy Georgian twist—i.e. bitters from Fee Brothers.

Come drink one and see if you can’t taste the way the Great Lakes bleeds into those Deep Southern flavors;.

Smokehouse 21: Southern comfort food. Prepared by Midwesterners. Made for Left Coasters.



new deal dealsIf you’re bummed that you missed our 2-year birthday celebration earlier this week, don’t be, because we’re still celebrating.

Thanks to the fine and very generous distillers at New Deal, who donated to us several bottles of liquor and liqueurs, the party continues.

In addition to our seven signature house cocktails, we have, until the booze dries up, a handful of other craft cocktails, steeply discounted, exclusively made with New Deal spirits.

Order up a(n):

  • Eastern Cowboy (New Deal Vodka, Mud Puddle Chocolate Liqueur and Cream)
  • Ginger Donkey (Whiskey, New Deal Ginger Liqueur and Ginger Ale)
  • Huckleberry Gin Collins (New Deal Gin No. 33, Lemon, Lime, Soda and Huckleberry Puree)
  • Smokin’ Fillie (Hot Monkey Vodka, Pineapple Juice and Grenadine)

Collect ’em all and get ’em while they last, because once they’re gone, they’re gone, folks.



emIt’s once again time to dust off your Stetson, polish your boots and put a little jingle in your spurs, because we’re celebrating our second year in business with all-day food and drink specials, followed by several quick-draw rounds of Cowboy Bingo.

Our all-day party kicks off at 11:30am, Monday, November 11, and we’ll go until the there’s nothing left but empty beer cans and rib bones chewed bare. Cowboy Bingo starts at 9pm, sharp.

Expect all-day food specials, discounted wines by the glass, craft beers by the can, new seasonal cocktails, down-and-dirty country music, pressed Wranglers and plaid pearl-buttoned shirts.

Plus, the folks from New Deal Distillery will be on-hand to make sure that everyone’s spirits remain high.

Swing by, get your fill of smoked meats and wish us a “Happy Birthday” as we cross into our terrible twos! And then, if your numbers come up, stand and shout “Bingo!” If you’re a winner, you’ll take home gift certificates and Smokehouse swag.


If you find yourself looking for something to do this Sunday—now that Breaking Bad‘s called it a wrap—then you should put on your cowboy and cowgirl boots and head over to Mississippi Studios for the Portland Mercury‘s (and Nicky USA’s, and PBR’s, and Jack Daniels’s) Chili Jamboree.

What is the Chili Jamboree? It’s a first annual Chili Cook-Off at which you, the ticket holder, get to sample 10 chilis made by some of Portland’s best chefs, including our very own Beej.

We can’t say much about it, but we can say it’s being sous’d by Michelle Lesniak, and that it’ll be meaty (think brisket, pork and sausage).

What else does it get you?

Live country music from Daniel Romano, Shelby Earl, Mission Spotlight, Sturgill Simpson and Lucero.

And the best part? You have a voice, because you and all your fellow ticket holders get to cast votes for your favorite chili bowl.

Tastings and performances start at 2pm, Sunday, October 6, at Mississippi Studios (3939 N Mississippi Ave.).

Tickets can be paid for here. Seriously, don’t sleep on it. It’s gonna be delicious and fun.


green dragonIf you’re of a certain age, you’ve probably had a Vodka Bomb, otherwise known in polite company as Vodka and Red Bull mixer.

Because our newest drink has that same pull-you-in-two-directions-at-once vibe that the Vodka Bomb has, we’ve dubbed it the Green Dragon.

You know, Red Bull? Green Dragon?

Except our vodka’s infused with pears. And ginger. And our stimulant isn’t taurine, but caffeine, from green tea.

Ergo: Green Dragon.

Of course, it won’t pull you as far down the trembling hands road as that other one. So it’s healthier, in so far as vodka is considered healthy. And because it’s got pears, ginger and green tea, it’s definitely tastier.

But we’re not sure about that name. If you can do better, hit us up and let us know. If we like it, we’ll use it and give you a prize.