Family Dining in Marin: Best Lil' Porkhouse in San Rafael
October 8, 2012Posted by pamela |
It's always been a challenge to find good BBQ in the Bay Area, let alone Marin County, but we're happy to see that the situation is changing. The newest contender for local BBQ top dog is Best Lil' Porkhouse, which serves up traditional BBQ favorites from its location on San Rafael's Miracle Mile.
On our recent visit, we were pleasantly surprised by how good everything was—not that we expected anything to be bad, but because the food seemed to be made with extra care and attention to detail. The restaurant itself is really small, with only three tables in the tiny dining area. It looks like they're expanding to the space next door, but until then you might want to either get there early or get your order to go, which seems to be a popular option. There's table out on the sidewalk for outdoor dining, too.
The Porkhouse is decorated in a cowboy theme, and feels like a roadhouse somewhere in the South. Each table has its own roll of paper towels and squeeze bottles with two kinds of house-made BBQ sauces, as well as a selection of hot sauces.
Order at the counter and the staff will bring out your food. The Porkhouse offers platters and sandwiches, each of which are accompanied by a variety of homemade sides. Smoked meats are the real BBQ deal here, and are served with a small amount of sauce—you can add more if you like.
The sides were really outstanding, too, and elevated the food above your standard BBQ fare. Mac-and-cheese had a nice crust and was topped with crumbled bacon. Fried okra was crisp and served with a ranch-dressing-like dipping sauce, and baked beans were sweet but with a pleasant tang from green peppers and more bacon. And make sure you try the house-made pickles—they're amazing. They're also available in fried pickle form, which we didn't get a chance to try (maybe on our next visit).
The Best Lil' Porkhouse offers "Lil' Piggy Meals" for kids 10 and under. Choose from a junior pulled pork sandwich, pigs in a blanket, chicken tenders, or a grilled cheese sandwich. Meals are served with fries or mac-and-cheese as well as an ice cream cup or baby carrots. My kids both opted for the pulled pork sandwich and both were extremely happy with them.
Best Lil' Porkhouse is owned by Ken and Christina Flach. Tennis fans might recognize Ken as a 1988 Olympic tennis gold medalist and two-time Wimbledon winner in men's doubles.
Best Lil' Porkhouse is located in San Rafael's Miracle Mile Plaza at 2042B 4th Street (just after Greenfield Avenue). They're open Tuesday–Thursday from 11 am–8 pm, Friday and Saturday from 11 am–9 pm, and Sunday from noon–8 pm. Visit them online at www.bestlilporkhouse.com or call (415) 479-PORK (7675).