East-siders who have fallen hard for BJ Smith's sliver of a barbecue joint on NW 21st no longer have to venture to the west side to get their fix. Today, Smith officially opened the doors to Smokehouse Tavern, basically a slightly more deluxe version of his original Smokehouse 21, and it serves the full menu until midnight every night.
The narrow space designed by fashion designer and Project Runway champ Michelle Lesniak (who is also Smith's fiancee) sports golden walls lined with mirrors and antique ephemera, plus a long cocktail bar that seats about 20, with additional outdoor seating for 10 when the weather is good.
At the new outpost you'll find the same favorites — bacon and molasses cornbread, wedge salad, spare ribs, and brisket — but with a few bonuses that come from having a bigger kitchen. Think marrow bones with smoked trout roe, pea shoots, and brioche; and pulled pork poutine with Beecher's cheese curds and gravy. A butchering area allows Smith to order a whole animal each week and break it down for nose-to-tail specials. And the weekend brunch will offer dishes like brisket benedicts, pulled pork hash, and shrimp 'n' grits. To drink, there's local beer, wine, and a cocktail menu developed by Rum Club.
Smokehouse Tavern: 1401 S.E. Morrison St., Ste. 117, Portland. Hours: 11 a.m. to midnight Monday-Friday; 10 a.m. to midnight Saturday-Sunday.