Just putting it out there, I still miss Swanky Franks. But Little Barn is damn good.
This is also a longer review in the “Bites” series. #sorrynotsorry
If you can take your eyes off the tall, hot blonde bartender with two plus reasons to make you stare and then you manage to escape the claws of a bar, chocked full of salad eating, Merlot sipping cougars (classic Westport), Little Barn has a lot to offer.
All half-joking aside, I was skeptical about going to Little Barn, mostly because I was a frequent guest to Swanky Franks, a fast food dive that I truly do miss. One thing is evident though, they did a nice job with this place. From the outside, it clearly looks like a rustic barn and I like their logo’s mascot even more. It’s an owl! Owls, barns, you get it, right?
|Love the artwork of the tattered flag in the back of the barn.|
|I cozied up to the outdoor fireplace while waiting for a vacant table.|
The space is further highlighted by two fireplaces; one indoors, and another one outdoors which will clearly be a great patio experience when nicer weather hits the area. I also really liked the old license plates on the wall in the dining area. The waitress mentioned they have 45 states in total and I found myself trying to figure out which ones were missing. A cool touch above the bar, if you can manage to look away from the ladies, is the neon lights “Liquor Store” sign. It’s funky fresh, I like it.
|That’s cool. You know it.|
|The plates! Love this! I’ll figure out the missing ones soon enough 😉|
Come to think of it, the only real issues I had with Little Barn were these:
Issue #1: The door problem. They have three doors; a side entrance, the patio entrance in the front, and a back door. I knew enough to go in the side door but while I was waiting by the outdoor fireplace for my table to be ready, so many people tried to go in that way and they just didn’t get it. Some thought it was a bit ridiculous. The back door is just a fire exit. Three doors, enter in the side, please.
The second issue, I’ll be creative and call it Issue #2, they were out of a drink I wanted called the Bulleit Rock Cider; Bulleit Bourbon with house made cider syrup and a lemon wedge. I’m not sure how you could be out of anything on the drink menu on a Friday night but I was more than satisfied with their Maple Old Fashioned; Crown Royal Maple Whiskey, Rock & Rye, pressed orange peel and whiskey barrel aged bitters. The drink was smooth and strong and was a perfect end of the week remedy. Overall, Little Barn’s drink menu has a lot of creative choices and you should have no trouble finding one that suits you.
The cuisine at Little Barn is classic American gastropub fare with a shot of other cultures as seen in the quesadillas and the delightfully crispy vegetarian spring rolls with a sweet Thai chili sauce that I couldn’t get enough of. This starter was served with a refreshing vinegar based carrot-bean sprout slaw.
|The one time I didn’t complain about something veggie.|
Little Barn’s menu has a burgers sections that many people are raving about and that I will likely get ino after a future visit. They also serve tacos and a number of different sandwiches including their raved about pulled pork served on an English muffin and topped with creamy coleslaw.
I chose to bypass all that and give their fish ‘n’ chips a chance and I’m glad I did! I’m picky about battered fish no matter where I go and I’ve really only applauded a few places in Fairfield County. Little Barn kept it original and put out four pieces of fresh cod with a light, crispy beer batter that wasn’t too greasy. They did the people of the U.K. much justice with the fry on the flaky fish and added their name to my short list of good fish & chips joints. The fries (chips) were good but being in the former Swanky Franks, I sort of found myself wishing for a pile of Swanky’s fries.
If you’re wondering about other main courses at Little Barn they have steak frites, turkey meatloaf, baby back ribs, pan roasted Scottish salmon and a very homey chicken pot pie in a cast iron skillet that doesn’t hide the chicken. Little Barn even has a family friendly kids menu.
For dessert, I have to admit, I forgot what they have. My choice was easy when I spotted the apple pie empanada with whipped cream and vanilla gelato. I thought this sweet treat would be hit or miss and luckily it was a mega hit. The dough was cooked through which is very important in desserts of this type and it was sweet but I liked that. The portion wasn’t too big and it’s clearly enough for one person so don’t share. I shared. Big mistake.
Even with the door problem and the absence of that bourbon drink I really enjoyed Little Barn. It’s affordable, stylish, and is perfect for just about any occasion and no matter who you’re with. This is one restaurant that shows you can have a simple menu with modern takes on some dishes and if they continue to do it well, they will excel.
1050 Post Road East
Westport, CT 06880