Friday Night Bites at Feast Portland: Franklin Barbecue


It’s Friday afternoon around 4:30 pm, and the evening commute is already starting to heat up. In a parking lot beside a low slung red brick building, a smoker with two huge chimneys sits in one corner and picnic tables are lined up end to end. But rather than cars pulling up in this lot, a line has formed outside its gate. It’s September in Portland, Oregon, but on this particularly warm summer day, with the sun starting to drop low in the sky, and a line forming for beer, you could almost convince yourself you were in Texas.

The line at Franklin Barbecue in Austin is legendary. You can expect to wait three hours or more in person, and even celebrity won’t get you a front of the line pass. President Obama may be the one exception. Luckily, if you’ve planned far enough in advance and you’re getting at least five pounds, you can pre-order for pickup. But for a West Coaster who doesn’t get to Austin all that often (it’s been three years!), snagging a ticket to the Franklin Barbecue and Friends dinner at Feast Portland was the answer to getting my fix. The morning tickets went on sale, I was silently praying this wouldn’t be the day our Internet connection went down.

Needless to say, all of it — the brisket, ribs, sausages and pulled pork, really ARE that good. And Aaron Franklin really seems like a nice, down-to-earth guy. Even heads down, slicing and serving, he chatted with each person as they came through the line getting their plates filled. On a Friday night at the end of summer, there really wasn’t anything more you could ask for than a plate of killer barbecue, a cold beer and a good chat. Well, maybe seconds.



I just want to point out Aaron Franklin is wearing a Rainier beer shirt.


There’s a “hittin’ ’em with both barrels” joke here somewhere.


Deschutes Brewery served up a delicious copper ale and samples of The Abyss, an incredible porter that ended up being my dessert.


Parking lot party.

Aaron Franklin chats and unwraps a brisket.

Aaron Franklin chats and unwraps a brisket.


When you bring your own sauce from ATX to PDX.


Everyone talks about Franklin BBQ’s brisket, but the pulled pork is amazing, too.


PDX’s Woodsman Tavern brought the sides to the party — beans, collards and a lightly pickled cucumber-corn salad.


On a regular day, I probably would have licked the plate clean. At Feast, it’s a different story.


Xocolatl by David teamed up with Franklin BBQ to do a Feast-only special collaboration.


Tillamook was serving up its premium Oregon Marionberry Cheesecake and Stumptown Cold Brew ice creams.


The End.

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