Barbecue, beer and bourbon at Bitterroot BBQ
Bitterroot BBQ is the new barbecue, beer and bourbon joint in the suddenly hot barhopping strip of Ballard Avenue Northwest.
Seattle Times staff reporter
5239 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle
Hours: 11 a.m.-2 a.m. daily
Etc: Visa and MasterCard accepted; no obstacles to access; street parking; full bar
Our barbecue joints don't look like Bitterroot BBQ — the chain-link fencing and rough-hewn planks on the walls, the sleek lights and aluminum like-covered tables, a mashup of urban meets country. Think East Village roadhouse.
Bitterroot BBQ is the new barbecue, beer and bourbon joint in the suddenly hot barhopping strip of Ballard Avenue Northwest. It's for the hipsters in the 'hood, with its long list of craft beer, whiskey and cocktails and glorious cuts of smoked and cured meats. Barhoppers would be pleased. Food is served until 1 a.m.
The menu: The barbecue chicken, briskets, pork belly, pulled pork, hot links and baby back ribs come with your choice of two sides ($14-$26). There are eight sides to choose from. Cheaper are the five sandwiches ($8 each).
Its mac 'n' cheese ($10) — a shared plate or an entree, you decide — comes with your choice of two toppings. There are nine toppings available including bacon lardons and braised greens.
What to write home about: The buttery strips of beef brisket, with the fat glistening, were juicy and tender. Don't you dare cut off that slab of fat. Two sides that stand out: the sweet and spongy apple-pretzel stuffing and the salty fries. The pork belly ($14), cured and smoked, is one of your cheaper meat options. Some cornbread with honey butter goes well with that. (You don't count calories here.)
What to skip: The pulled-pork sandwich was dry, and all the dousing of hot sauce and barbecue sauce from the condiment tray did not make it go down any easier. The mac 'n' cheese is neither gooey nor cheesy.
The setting: The front is more suitable for large group dining or large orders. The backroom is more informal.
Summing up: An order of mac 'n' cheese, a pulled-pork sandwich and two entrees of briskets and pork belly with four sides, enough to feed three people, totaled $49. The bill is higher than at other barbecue joints in the city. Food, though, is more polished, the quality of the meat better.
Tan Vinh: 206-515-5656 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @tanvinhseattle.