Entering "Salt Lick Smokehouse and Tap Room", a locomotive-shaped smoker awaits you at the door, emanating the rustic ambiance of the American West. Wooden elements and warm colors are utilized to create an authentic American atmosphere. The smell of smoked barbecue adds to the authentic experience. Jason, sitting at the bar, is not only the soul of this restaurant, but also the designer and carpenter. He is responsible for the decor that can be seen throughout the building.
As an American, Jason has traveled to more than 40 countries. When he first arrived in Taiwan, Jason taught English in Taipei for five years. Not being used to city life, he prefered the rustic simplicity of the countryside, so every few months, he would drive alone or with friends along the east coast. Among his favorite spots are still, Ji-Qi beach, Sanzhan Creek, Emerald Valley, and Rainbow Waterfall. Jason decided to move to make a permanent move to Hualien eight years ago so he could enjoy the fresh air and simple everyday life. In his leisure time, he likes to jog along the coast on the Two Lakes Bikeway. He has even run from Meilun to Sanzhan and Tso Tsang Trail to enjoy the beautiful scenery of mountains and the sea. In recent years, he has participated in various marathons, and has come through them with many good results.
"I have worked as a cook and a carpenter in the United States, and I also have previous experience setting up restaurants," Jason said. About seven years ago he and his partners decided to open an authentic American restaurant in Hualien. They started with space planning. The remodeling of the restaurant, which is 60 square meters in size, from the first measurements, the design, building, woodwork and painting was all completed on their own. The walls are decorated with leather cowboy hats, saddles, leather boots and several black and white photos, creating a modern yet rustic atmosphere.
As the head chef at Salt Lick, Jason also demonstrates great skill in smoking meats. One of his signature dishes is the pulled pork sandwich. It is made with bone-in pork shoulder rubbed with 16 special spices, and smoked slow and low for 16 hours. The pork is then pulled (shredded) and topped with coleslaw and a special Carolina-style bbq sauce. The pulled pork sandwich is absolutely delicious. Other items on the menu include the baby back (pork) ribs, which not only look appetizing, but are tender and juicy and delectable. The 24-ounce fire-grilled thick-cut T-bone steak is seasoned and topped with homemade garlic butter to accentuate the natural flavor of the beef. The hand-tossed and deep dish pizzas would both be well accompanied by the cold craft beer that Salt Lick offers on tap. All the craft beer is from Taiwan breweries located around the island. All of these details make Salt Lick a great place to spend an evening with friends.
Salt Lick Smokehouse and Tap Room
Address: 151, Zhongshan Rd., Hualien City, Hualien County 970, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
Opening Hours: 11:30–14:30 , 17:00–22:00