Barrafina Dean Street 333

Squaremeal Review of Barrafina Dean Street ?

Despite being uprooted from its Frith Street birthplace in autumn 2016, London’s original Barrafina (Barrafina Adelaide Street and Barrafina Drury Lane followed) is just as superb, if not improved, since its shuffle across Soho to Dean Street. It’s now next to fellow Hart brothers restaurant Quo Vadis, which has had its ground-floor dining room reduced by two thirds. The resulting space for Barrafina feels built for purpose: the longer edge of the L-shaped dining bar and majority of queuing space (reservations aren't possible) is along the window-lined wall here, making the whole experience brighter and roomier. The classic, restrained decoration remains in the Barrafina mould (red leather bar stools and marble counters), while the popular classic Spanish tapas offering hasn't changed either, with croquetas packing a perfect mix of crunch and velvet, and milk-fed lamb rump arriving in a delectably dark meat sauce. Watch the chefs at work on the other side of the dining counter, as calm and friendly staff swerve around them taking orders and explaining daily specials. Figs in a tangy red wine gazpacho makes for a diverting dessert, while the all-Spanish wine selection features interesting grape varietals as well as the Hart brothers’ own Albariño, which is an excellent match for the seafood. Queuing for an hour isn't for everybody, but this is event dining for the converted.

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Barrafina Dean Street
10

Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar half

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Our favourite restaurant in London

by   platinum reviewer (86)

Jan 2015

We have eaten here more than any other restaurant in London, it is always first on our list when we have a free weekend lunchtime to be filled. For some reason I never want to have to queue for dinner, but if I have to wait at lunchtime (which I rarely do because I sit outside from about 11.30am), then it is always totally worth it. The staff are so friendly, knowledgeable and helpful (even if they have forgotten to charge us for our bottle of wine on 2 occasions - we told them and paid though)! There...

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Joanna G.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 9
  • Service: 10
  • Atmosphere: 10
  • Value: 9

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar halfstar empty

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by   (3)

Nov 2012

Barrafina is a lovely bar, serving tasty tapas in just the right proportions. I enjoyed the steak, the octopus with capers, tortillas and the cold meat platter. I waited for 1 hour 20 min for a table. I'm unsure if I'll be willing to wait again in the future though…That said, if you don’t mind standing in line in a cramped restaurant for over an hour, Barrafina will definitely be worth the wait.

Krystle L.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 8
  • Service: 8
  • Atmosphere: 6
  • Value: 7

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar half

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by   platinum reviewer (85)

Sep 2012

I'll 'fess up. I'm a Barrafina fanboy. Other tapas joints come and go, but the tiny open kitchen surrounded by a ring of covetted stools has remained consistently one of my favourite places to eat. Freshly sourced food, cooked as simply as is needed, around that bright buzzy little bar. It's not one you'll often hear me recommend though, as it's another (possibly the first) of the no reservations crowd. Get there dot on 12 for lunch and before 6pm if you need to know what time you're eating, otherwise...

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Grumbling Gourmet's rating

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  • Food & Drink: 8
  • Service: 7
  • Atmosphere: 8
  • Value: 8

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar empty

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by   (2)

Jul 2012

Have struggled to get in when arriving around 9pm a few times but still come back wanting in. A restaurant mimicking Cal Pep in Barcelona. Have found the staff really attentive when waiting in line and eager to please when seated. Food can be fantastic or just alright on the night but overall enjoyable. Supply of quality ingredient has to come into play when cooking a fresh seasonal menu. Always a more upper dining crowd with a few tourists wide eyed on bar stools. Take friend their when in Soho...

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Grant M.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 8
  • Service: 9
  • Atmosphere: 8
  • Value: 7

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar halfstar empty

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by   platinum reviewer (163)

May 2012

Editor's pick Another evening, another foodie queue. Thank god my companion got to Barrafina at 6pm on the dot and bagged us a pair of barstools because, despite the fact that normally only miners eat at this hour, about 5 minutes later the place is full. The eat-at-bar concept really suits the light, bright, informal atmosphere here and has the bonus/downside (depending on whether you're queueing or not) of discouraging lingering. It also makes it easy to catch the eye of the cheery servers behind it when you...

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BoatLady's rating

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  • Food & Drink: 8
  • Service: 8
  • Atmosphere: 8
  • Value: 7

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar full

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by   (1)

Jan 2012

My favorite place to eat after work. Fabulous seasonal menu's, the specials are always special (the last time we went they had the most delicious Mozambique prawns) and the atmosphere is very spanish. No bookings, but you can order small plates and wine while you wait at the small bar. Spanish waiters and a traditional spanish menu made me feel as though i was back in Madrid without having to leave London – shame about the weather!

Natasha K.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Atmosphere: 10
  • Value: 10

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar half

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by   platinum reviewer (153)

Jan 2010

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

The Hart brothers seem intent on conquering the Spainish restaurant market in London, and barrafina is a fine example of a simple concept (a tapas bar) executed with style and panash. Like a sushi bar (or Joel's eponymous L'Atelier), the L – shaped bar grants an excellent view of the chef's at work. The fish sits proudly on display centre stage and the plancha is fired up and ready for action. The action is all fairly low key, less Hell's Kitchen b******ing, more gentle ribbing, amongst the young...

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Richard E.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 9
  • Service: 8
  • Atmosphere: 9
  • Value: 7

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar half

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by   silver reviewer (17)

Oct 2009

Buzzy bar with highly skilled staff working behind it. The fish produce is super fresh; when we visited we had a delicious scallop carpaccio – very soft, thinly sliced with a lemon dressing; garlicky razor clams and la fritura – mixed dried seafood of the day, which included red mullet, prawns and calamari. We also had the coca mallorquina – the spinach was perfectly cooked with none of the bitterness you can sometimes get, complemented by pine kernels and raisins; and a delicious heritage tomato...

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Anoo's rating

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  • Food & Drink: 10
  • Service: 9
  • Atmosphere: 9
  • Value: 9

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar full

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by   (3)

Sep 2009

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Editor's pick Freshest fish and shellfish (if they're on the shelf the baby razor clams are not to be missed), exceptional meats (hot and cold) and gorgeous veg, all cooked/prepared in front of you. Absolutely no nonsense, don't come expecting a sit down meal experience, it is all about the tapas and banter with whom your with. I've not had a dish (or starter or side order) that disappointed and La Gitana sherry is an excellent accompaniment. Writing about Barrafina is making me want to go there, now.

Jarrod F.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 10
  • Service: 9
  • Atmosphere: 9
  • Value: 10

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Barrafina Dean Street

26-29 Dean Street ,London W1D 3LL

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar half

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by   bronze reviewer (11)

Apr 2009

I just love this place…everything about it is so right! Gets busy and doesn't take bookings so you want to get there early or late. You don't really want to be more than 2 people as all seating is at the bar (except for a few tables outside that I would avoid). Would also try to sit at one end of the bar or on the corner for more room. Try any of the long list of specials…had some delicious pigs cheeks at the recommendation of our waiter/barman and they were ‘melt in your mouth’ delicious. Hart brothers...

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Incognito's rating

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  • Food & Drink: 9
  • Service: 9
  • Atmosphere: 9
  • Value: 8

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  1. Published :

    Eat With Steph :: Barrafina * | Eat With Steph

    Being around since 2007, Barrafina was one of the newly awarded Michelin star restaurants in September 2014. Unconventional, there aren’t many Spanish tapas bars around with a Michelin star rating, and despite what you might think, a restaurant awarded with a Michelin star rating isn’t a decision factor for me at all when it comes to reviewing a meal. This was a restaurant sought out by word of mouth and therefore a visit was beckoning…

    With a semi-open kitchen, Mallorcan and Catalan tapas dishes flood the menu, dishes are exquisitely laid out to perfection. Forget the prices and focus on the taste. It’s...
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  1. Published :

    KOJO London :: KOJO London: Barrafina: Worth the wait

    Before I left London for a few months, Barrafina had long been on my list. I had heard amazing things about the top-quality tapas from other bloggers so I knew that when I was back in London, Barrafina would be the first place to visit.

    After visiting the Christmas markets in South Bank with my equally quirky companion, I headed back to Soho with great haste in order to get there early. You may be thinking, "why would I want to get to a restaurant early?" One possibility is that I may be rushing to attend some event. The other possibility is the combination of a no-reservation policy and a small seating...
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  1. Published :

    Half a Slice of Toast :: Half a Slice of Toast | Barrafina

    I went to Barrafina with a couple of friends for lunch over the weekend. We arrived at 12.40, not realising it didn’t open until 1pm on Sundays, but there were already some people checking out the menu. They left and we wondered whether we should do the same. Barrafina has been on my list of places to try for the longest time and I had heard good things about it, so I was keen on waiting. It was good we did because it wasn’t long before more and more people started arriving and taking their place in the queue. We were the first in the door and as Barrafina only has 23 seats, an unlucky few who were queueing ended...
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  1. Published :

    A Girl Has to Eat - Restaurant Reviews & Food Guide :: A Girl Has to Eat - Barrafina Frith Street

    Barrafina Frith Street opened to critical acclaim in 2007 following on from the success of its sister restaurant Fino, both of which are owned by the restaurateur brothers Sam and Eddie Hart. 2014 proved to be a great year for the pair, with a second branch of Barrafina opening on Adelaide Street, also to critical acclaim, and the original Barrafina on Frith Street winning a Michelin star.
    As most Londoners know, Barrafina Frith Street is a tiny establishment. There are 23 stools which line the L-shaped marbled bar. There is a no-booking policy which means that at peak times diners can expect to wait for at least...
    More from A Girl Has to Eat - Restaurant Reviews & Food Guide »

  1. Published :

    Gingle lists everything :: Gingle lists everything Barrafina

    I am not going to write anything bad about Barrafina. There is nothing bad to say about Barrafina. General consensus is that the food at Barrafina is good and general consensus is right. But how good? Well, for me, just pleasantly good, not knock-your-socks-off good. I enjoyed everything I ate and the meal itself was a very pleasurable experience. Even the hour’s wait for a table passed by quite quickly as we started on a bottle of red and got some padron peppers and bread to keep us company. For the first time ever I think I actually found a spicy one!
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Essential Details for Barrafina Dean Street

  • Cuisine: Spanish Tapas
  • Area: Soho
  • Price: £44.00
  • Wine: £19.00
  • Champagne: £65.00

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