3131 SE Division St., 232-0102, whiskeysodalounge.com. 5 pm-midnight Sunday-Thursday,
5 pm-1 am Friday-Saturday.
Andy Ricker’s Thai bar and de facto Pok Pok waiting room is a cheap Southeast Asian vacation. Score a seat in the wood-paneled space and order a tableful of Thai drinking bites, like salty little deep-fried anchovies and turmeric-laced meatballs and deep-fried pig intestines served with black vinegar sauce, which taste like sweet-and-sour churros. The namesake whiskey soda, spiked with puckery tamarind and palm sugar, is a requisite accessory, but when it’s hot outside, slurp down a bia wun (“jelly beer”)—an alcoholic slushie made by slowly freezing 22-ounce bottles of Thailand’s national beer, Singha, in a revolving contraption that looks like a plastic wine barrel. KELLY CLARKE.
What to drink: Pok Pok Bloody Mary—it’s like they blended the spicy soul of Thailand with tomato juice and served it chilled. And those drinking vinegars, which come in a rainbow of housemade flavors from Taiwan lemon to blackberry, are so refreshing the Ricker gang’s now selling them retail at all of the empire’s locations.
Happy hour: Drink cheap “things that are served in cans and glasses” 10 pm-close nightly.
Entertainment: Ike’s legendary fish sauce wings, oddly appealing Thai surf rock.