New York Times Review

@thebarn was recently reviewed by New York Times reporter Rand Richards Cooper.

Review: Beneath the Rafters of the Barn, Steak and Seafood
February 12, 2016
Rand Richards Cooper
New York Times

Entering a new restaurant, you react to certain details semi consciously, décor features that skew your affections one way or another. The first thing I noticed at the Barn was the colored lights. Backlit areas glowed pink, yellow or green; a wooden lattice enclosed false marble panels that were lighted a luminous aqua from within. Wild, Gorgon-like chandeliers glimmered blue and yellow overhead. There was a vaguely disco-like quality to it all. Uh-oh, I thought.

My initial wariness proved unfounded. The Barn gives off a curious mishmash of signals: located in a renovated carriage house, it’s both rustic and contemporary, family-friendly and romantic, all at once. Yet somehow — don’t ask me how — it works. The restaurant, which opened in September, combines the talents of James Chen, a co-owner (along with his wife, Sandy Gao), whose three previous restaurants include the nearby Han Asian Cuisine, and its chef, Dan Fortin, formerly of the Infinity Hall bistros in Norfolk and Hartford. The Barn’s kitchen embellishes a primarily steak-and-seafood menu with eclectic Mediterranean and Asian touches. The results thoroughly satisfy.

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