"This is a heavy glugs of tequila, fresh lime and plenty of salt type of place... "Review Rating: Reviewed by T.A.O
This strip of Shoredtich real estate hasn’t had it easy in the last few years, but it seems a corner has been turned. There’s hip menswear store Present, new pub the crown and Shuttle and now Barrio East. Shoreditch High Street is taking it back.
Barrio East is the latest addition to the chain of Mexican bars, with others located in Angel and the West End. Running with a loose Mexican theme, Barrio east is an attractive place. Colourful, spacious and a little off the wall - just check out the wooden caravan that stands next to the dance floor. DJs and live acts fill the evenings and a well-received happy hour stretches from 4pm to 8pm daily. Take advantage and sample from the selection of classic and speciality cocktails, which Barrio East excels in. What we like is that Barrio East isn’t all about the careful mixology of the cocktail; this is a heavy glugs of tequila, fresh lime and plenty of salt type of place.
On the food side, Barrio East sticks to small sharers and tapas dishes. We try the street tacos, which are a touch on the small side and never really allow the flavour of the slow cooked pork to come out with the presence of a little too much pickle drowning it. The chicken taquitos are a step up in class, with the crispy rolled shell a good foil to the salty chicken and hot salsa. Out there on its own is the ceviche de salmon. Fresh chunks of salmon are marinated in passion fruit, lime and dark rum to create a dish that you could eat and eat. The menu also includes baby back ribs, calamari and further small plates.
Friendly, laid back service is the Barrio way and that’s exactly what we get. The bar succeeds in that it doesn’t feel like part of a chain, its personality attracting a mixed crowd. Thanks to its solid cocktails (at reasonable prices – around £8.50 each) and one of the best ceviche dishes we’ve had in a long time, we hope that Barrio East is here to stay on this stretch of Shoreditch High Street.
T.A.O reviewed Barrio Shoreditch on Fri 31 May 2013