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Pork Shoppe is Avondale's place for ribs

Pork Shoppe (2755 W Belmont) is a quiet little place tucked into an unassuming storefront where Belmont meets Elston. But their food definitely makes the place a must visit.

Pork Shoppe's signature dish is the Pork Belly Pastrami sandwich. Created from the same cut as bacon, but cured and smoked in a true New York deli fashion, the pastrami has a soft sweetness that beef pastrami can find wanting, and a robust flavor that will make even bacon purists think twice.

The almost-gimmicky pastrami, though, can overshadow some great barbecue. The ribs in particular are warmly seasoned and incredibly juicy, either on their own or drenched in one of Pork Shoppe's three sauces. You have a choice of babybacks or spareribs, or the half-and-half for those of us who want it all. A pulled pork sandwich with a whole pickle on the side is also a tangy treat. The brisket is fine, not quite as good as the pork, but hey, the name isn't "Beef Shoppe".

Another easily-overlooked aspect of the place, especially for delivery orders, is their small but carefully curated bourbon selection. Next to standbys like Old Grand-Dad and Wild Turkey is a rotating selection of stand-outs - Noah's Mill, Angel's Envy, or Templeton Rye often appear tucked into the simple wood-crate shelves behind the small bar.

Whether dining in with a nice bourbon or having it delivered, there is plenty to enjoy about Pork Shoppe.

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