WESTPORT, Conn. — The Little Barn, Westport’s newest dining spot, was standing room only Wednesday night as hundreds of people gathered to celebrate its opening— and guests liked what they saw and tasted.
“I’ve tried the chicken wings, the spring rolls, tuna tartar and a slider [mini hamburger], and everything was delicious,” said Westport resident Andrew Wells. “I’m eagerly waiting for the next tray of food to come out.”
The vintage-themed, American pub is the brainchild of restaurateurs Scott Beck and Kevin McHugh. These Staples High School graduates and longtime friends are industry veterans. In fact, the Little Barn is the fifth restaurant they have opened together, Beck said.
Beck and McHugh also co-own The Chelsea in Fairfield. McHugh’s other restaurant credits include the Spotted Horse in downtown Westport and the Gray Goose in Southport. Beck is a co-owner of Match in South Norwalk.
Located at 1050 Post Road E. in the building that formerly housed Swanky Franks, the Little Barn is vastly different from its predecessor. The new space boasts reclaimed barn siding salvaged from Illinois; a galvanized tin roof from Montana; dozens of vintage license plates decorating the walls; a restored 1950s liquor store neon sign; and a window from the old Con Edison building in New York.
“We sourced stuff from all over the country for this place to give it this vintage, rustic feel,” said Beck.
The restaurant also features indoor and outdoor fireplaces, and an outdoor patio that will open in the summer. The patio will have seating for 30 people, said Beck.
Joining Beck and McHugh in this venture is partner Steve Calzon. Kitchen operations will be led by Chef Jeff Spence, who’s also the chef at The Chelsea.
The Little Barn menu features a variety of pub fare/comfort foods, such as nachos, chicken wings, lobster mac and cheese, fish and chips, baby back ribs, burgers and sandwiches. There are also farm fresh salads, tacos and options just for kids. Nothing on the menu is priced over $20, Beck said.
Norwalk resident Olive Manning and Greenwich resident Daniela Harris— who were among those that enjoyed a sneak peak on Wednesday night— were impressed by the food and the atmosphere.
“I like the feel and the coziness of it,” said Manning. “I definitely want to come back on a regular night and check out the rest of the menu.”
The restaurant opens for lunch and dinner beginning Thursday at 11 a.m. For more information, visit the Little Barn website.