I'm explaining why i gave a low score on service and overall experience. We had reservations for 6:30 pm saturday night. We had an hour and half before the show. We ordered drinks as some as we got in. We put in our order at the same time as our oyster order and our appetizers came and went it was about 30 minutes between. then the Manager had to deliver our meals. I don't know who dropped the ball but something was amiss. The restaurant was almost empty when we received our meals. Also their menu seems more drink focused than food.
Love going here. No TV screens crowding the ambiance and distracting the conversation! It's fun to sit in the middle island sometimes, with other patrons at the table; more communal feeling if you don't mind the close quarters. Wait staff have always been professional and friendly and the decor is simple but classy.
Had a great dinner before a show at the Cabot! Our waitress was knowledgeable and made sure we had enough time to order and eat without rushing! Food was great, as were the cocktails!
Unacceptabley poor quality of food compared to how it used to be.
Great dinner! Food was delicious. Fun uplifting atmosphere and service was on point.
Very expensive, small portions, underseasoned food. I wanted to love it here, but was very disappointed. Although the oysters were expensive at $3 each, my boyfriend loved them and our server was wonderful, but fish was oversalted with very little in the way of sides and my steak was bland and cold and I couldn't cut it with the dull steak knife. Little rum shake at the end of the meal to celebrate my boyfriend's bday was a nice touch, but not enough to make up for the rest. : (
The food was delicious and the cocktails were amazing, very creative and tasty! We had a great time and our server was terrific. The only downside was the cost, a bit higher than we thought it would be, but overall great place for dinner, especially before a show at The Cabot Theater which is within walking distance.
We had a large group for a pre-theater dinner on Saturday night and although it was a bit slower than we would have liked, we thoroughly enjoyed our unique cocktails, wine and our meals (most of us got the burger and were not disappointed!). If you have NSMT tickets, and a party over 5, give yourselves at least two hours because it is a popular place and they can be a bit a slow. It's worth the wait!
Wife and I stopped in for a quick bite after attending a Sunday pm concert. Both ordered a sandwich and beer which were reasonable and delicious. We will definitely return to Barrel House in the future.
Barrel House is a great place to enjoy drinks with friends. They have an extensive beer/wine/handcrafted cocktail list, lively bar and atmosphere. On the other hand, the noise level is quite high - we could not hear each other or the waitress because of the background noise. The food prices are quite high and the choices somewhat limited. We decided to order a variety of appetizers rather than full dinners. Everything was good, but not quite memorable. Service was excellent, we were promptly seated and attendend to by the wait staff. It didn't knock our socks off, but I think it woud be an excellent choice for people looking more for good drinks.
As always the front of house staff and bartenders were amazing. The turnover of the kitchen staff is more than evident. I stared at the menu is disbelief that it was completely turned upside down. The appetizer menu used to be amazing! Now it's just another over priced bland menu like its sister restaurant soma. But new staff means new flavors and possibly new favorites. So I tried to keep an open mind. That aside, it's the attention to details that made me miss the old kitchen staff the most. Started with the bread. The butter is just regular butter now rather than their in house one. The steak in the steak frites was just starting to turn. The French fries that were touted as being better cause they were hand cut, we're dry. And the sauce that was eloquently stated on the menu....its just a sweet BBQ sauce.
Only reason I didn't give 5 stars is that it was so loud in there I couldn't hear myself think. Food was great, service was great, love the atmosphere.
Our most recent visit was nothing short of outstanding. Our server, Taylor, was excellent. The food was perfect, and the cocktails were as divine as always.
The worse lobster roll I've ever had. Dry bun, tasteless meat, $30. I will never cone to this restaurant again.
I booked my 10pm reservation for apps and cocktails at 9:40p, I arrived on time and I've never felt so unwanted at a restaurant! Although barely hanging on to being friendly, the bartender couldn't wait to get us out of there...closing is closing, I get it but WOW - he was on the cusp of rude. If 10pm is too late to have apps and cocktails don't allow people to book that late. I've been before and will go back - maybe. There are so many other wonderful hang-outs in town..
Barrel House was a neighborhood gem. About three months or so ago they lost their executive chef or fired him or something. The replacement chef... too much salt in almost everything. The burger used to be the best in Boston but has lost the sauce and homemade pickles on top, and has become ehhhhh. Just another ok but not great burger. The bread was brought in house and has been awesome. The steak frites used to have an amazing sauce, that went away. Instead there is an uninspired pesto type topping. And too much salt.
I'm writing this because my trip this last week on Thursday 22 June was a definite miss. The steak frites came out rare (ordered medium well, usually that comes out medium). The meat had that just-turned slimy flavor where you can just taste that the meat has gone bad. I sent it back and asked that it be cooked to medium well, and when it came back, the turned flavor was more distinct. I told the server that the meat had turned, and he and Barrel House were very good about trying to make it right, and took it completely off the bill. The French fries were good before the original chef left. They got amazing briefly under the new chef and then this last batch was a complete disappointment - dry frozen tasting and just bad. My wife and I split a baked potato - dry, flavorless, again just not caring for the ingredients. Barrel House is not cheap - we usually spend $60 to $90 for two of us - and at present the food is just not working. I hope they figure this good thing out. We love the place, and we'll try it again in four or five weeks hoping it improves.
In the past the Barrel House has been one of our favorite places to eat. We were so disappointed recently when we went and all of our favorite plates have been replaced.
Obviously one of our favorites was the brie fondue which is no longer there, but the rest of our meal was disappointing. We ordered the burger which we hoped has the same delicious pickled relish and French fries, it didn't. The burger was plain and the fries were cold and soggy.
I understand that there is a new head chef and everyone wants to make something their own but keeping a few crowd favorites may have made the transition a little easier.
We won't be returning to the Barrel House but we wish the new staff the best on their endeavors.
This excellent venue was perfect for a pre theater dinner. It is just steps from the Cabot Theater. Our service, from Darianne (sp?) was terrific. The food was top notch as well. 12 oz sirloin cooked perfectly and very tasty. Seared tuna well received. Steak frites good but pedestrian. Two of the three shrimp cocktail fresh , one a bit droopy. Crab dip appetizer with homemade fries outstanding and roasted broccoli side dish very good. Two of us would have jumped all over the special offering which was a lamb dinner for four, but, unfortunately the other two folks are not lamb eaters. Kudos to the chef ,though, for the "outside the box" thinking. Ambiance excellent, especially the long , large communal table in the center of the room.
Fun and loud with creative food and vibrant urbane atmosphere. Don't miss the grilled Octopus and the St Peter's Fish was sublime.
Great if you want an extensive drink menu and an appetizer. Not much choice for entrees and very pricey for what you get.