A Tri-City favorite expands into Spokane market

It started out as a food truck in Richland’s John Dam Plaza serving up Porter Kinney’s signature smoked meats, and it’s transformed into a local barbecue juggernaut, with three retail locations doing brisk business throughout the Tri-Cities.

Now, Porter’s Real Barbecue is continuing its trend of steady growth by opening a new location in Spokane. The restaurant at 9420 N. Newport Highway, Suite 104, debuted in February.

“Spokane is really special to us. We’ve thought it naturally made sense to go there as the next market,” said Amol Kohli, Porter’s president, noting that many Spokanites have discovered the family operation over the years while visiting the Tri-Cities and become loyal customers.

The new location is not only bringing Porter’s popular brisket, pulled pork, ribs and more to a new city, it’s also bringing jobs. The target was to hire about 25 people for the Spokane spot, and “we’ll continue to build off those numbers,” Kohli said.

As for continued expansion, Kohli said the company is taking things one location and one step at a time.

As long as Porter’s can maintain its quality and standards, “I think growing down the road is something we’d continue to do,” Kohli said, adding that there’s no rush.

“We’ve got one open in Spokane. Let’s go from there. There’s no need to do 100 tomorrow. That’s our position,” he said.

Porter’s Real Barbecue traces its roots  Porter Kinney moved back to the Tri-Cities from South Carolina with a love for barbecue.

The food truck launched in 2014, and brick and mortar locations in Richland, Kennewick and Pasco followed. The company also has a commissary in Richland.

The goal is to “spread the love of barbecue to as many people as we can, in a way that always meets our quality and our standards,” Kohli said. “We’re excited to keep adding to our story of starting as a food truck and building it out one by one. We’re excited, we’re honored and we’re blessed to be in this great position.”

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