The smell of hops hangs thick in the airy stretch of Leary between Ballard and Fremont, thanks to a bounty of breweries that have opened in the last few years. But if Michael Law and his custom smoke shack’s fragrant fumes have anything to say about it, the Frelard ‘hood will have a whole new scent when Bourbon and Bones opens at 4350 Leary Way NW.
Named one of our Rising Star Chefs of 2013 for “his knack for seasoning, precision with a fryer, and exacting details” as chef at the Wandering Goose, Law plans to woo diners with unfussy barbecue—served on parchment paper, alongside a pile of house-pickled carrots, beets, or delicata squash—that stays true to his North Carolina roots, and, as the name suggests, a cocktail program highlighting brown liquor. He’s waiting on a final inspection, but if all goes as planned, doors will be open officially by January 15.
Why go? As if you needed a reason beyond the fact that there will be smoked brisket and bacon by the pound, here are five reasons why we’re excited:
Fried chicken. Oh, the fried chicken. Law's is marinated in lemon, thyme, cayenne, and garlic, fried to a perfect golden crisp, and served by the piece or the barrel (white bread included). You may have fallen in love with it at one of the Wandering Goose’s Friday fried chicken suppers—and don’t worry, that’s not going anywhere anytime soon, since Law will still be overseeing the savory side of things at WG—but now you’ll have a daily opportunity to try the bird Ethan Stowell told Seattle Weekly was his personal favorite. There’s also going to be fried gizzards and jars of house-smoked clams, but let the fried chicken be your gateway drug.
You can sit outside and eat—and not just on the patio. Though the view may be best from one of the indoor tables closest to the peek-a-boo window into the smoker, I’m particularly fond of the under-the-stairs space out back, walled in by reclaimed fence boards, with a fireplace and a table big enough for a group of friends. Head through the door to the left of the bar to find it.
Moonshine that won’t make you go blind. Sure, you can be refined and have something classy like a sazerac, or perhaps one of the creations cooked up by cocktail curator Nate Quiroga, formerly of Liberty. But to keep it true to the Carolinas, you ought to stick with Batch 206’s 100-proof See 7 Stars Moonshine, which B&B has on tap, quite likely in a twist on a Moscow Mule.
Forget the sriracha shortage and get your hot sauce here. The duo of pork and peppers is one of food’s most perfect marriages, so it’s only suiting that Law’s brewing his own hot sauce to pair with his Lexington-style barbecue. He uses Tonnemaker Farms’ organic Ring of Fire cayenne peppers and plenty of vinegar for the fiery, uniquely fermented concoction.
Skip the crowds (there’s sure to be crowds) and dine at home in your fat pants. C’mon, this place was designed like a deli and made for take-out orders. You’ll have to forego the booze, but who among us doesn’t have a bottle of bourbon at home?