Barrio 47 is a lively Mediterranean restaurant nestled into the West Village. Upon entering, the restaurant was already packed, due to maybe the Farm to Fire dinners or the $1 Oysters and Happy Hour deal from 5-7pm. The decor was done by an Italian architect and reflects a rustic feel.
While waiting for my friend at the bar, Kelvin fixed me a Tamarind Dark and Stormy with Goslings Dark Rum, Housemade Ginger Beer, Lime juice, Angostura Aromatic Bitters and topped with a Rosemary Rum Mousse, which was a recommendation from part owner, Alex Volland. The Tamarind flavor in the cocktail made it a different twist on a classic cocktail.
We were seated for dinner right near the red mosaic oven and left our fate for dinner in Alex’s hands to choose what we’d be having that evening. He started us off with a Crudo Duo that included a tomatillo black bass and salmon tartare. Both selections paired nicely together, were very fresh, and the sauces that accompanied them were perfect compliments.
We then moved onto the second course, which happened to be my favorite. The Dungeness Crab Cocas (Spanish Flatbread) was the one item on the menu I had wanted to try when I looked at the menu and after tasting it I know why. The ingredients blended so well and were so flavorful that I could’ve eaten twelve of them.
For our main entrees, we sampled the Branzino and Ribeye a la Parilla. The ribeye was cooked to perfection, was very flavorful, but was a little more of a fatty cut than I would have liked. There was a fried cheese side, which looked like an exposed way to serve a mozzarella stick, but was still crisp and tasty. The other side was a couscous with a bit of a curry taste to it, so I gravitated more to the branzino dish and the sides served with it. The branzino was also cooked to perfection, the skin was crispy and the meat itself was juicy, probably a product of the way it’s cooked in the fire burning stove.
The side dish of fried zucchini and zucchini salad were both fresh, crisp and flavorful. This entree was a perfect dish to serve during the summer. I paired my main dish with the Barrio 47 Especial, which combined their signature Daïquiri. Mount Gay Barbados Rum infused with Lemon Grass & Vanilla Bean, Passion Fruit purée & Lemon Sugar. It was more of a meal than a drink and I was most definitely full after that.
I finished my cocktail flight by trying the Sangria. Alex had mentioned this would be unlike any sangria I had before and he was right. If the fact that the macerated fruits in the sangria marinate for 5 days wasn’t testament enough that this sangria would be different, just add the fact that this sangria has Stoli Razberi, chocolate bitters, creme de cassis and more and you might understand why it’s so popular.
We ended out tasting with the Peach Cobbler with Brandy peaches and Bourbon ice cream, which was served in a heated skillet, but after all of the fabulous flavors we took in over the course of our dinner, it came off as a little lackluster.
We had a chance to talk to executive chef Miguel A. Rosado, who has worked at restaurants like Compass, Dovetail and Cafe Boulud, but this is the first time he’s running the show. He came in to cook for Alex when the restaurant was still under construction and the stove was the only functioning means of cooking. He said that learning the temperamental nature of the oven took a couple months to pin down, but now they have it down to a science and leaving vegetables in overnight over a low heat helps to bring out the flavors.
Overall, Barrio 47 has a lively atmosphere comparable to Son Cubano in its heyday. The clientele varies from young trendy types to older couples that can appreciate the quality of food being served. At less than a year old, the restaurant already proves with its’ attention to detail, be it food, cocktails, ambiance, decor, that it had staying power. My personal recommendations would be to grab a group of girlfriends, fill up on the sangria and Dungeness Crab Cocas.
47 8th Avenue
New York, NY 10014