Barriles – Jackson Heights, Queens – December 2, 2016
I was skeptical about visiting Barriles (pronounced bahr-reel-ess, meaning barrels in Spanish). This sports bar / restaurant is a newer addition to Jackson Heights serving Colombian style food. Jackson Heights has so many Colombian restaurants that I was unsure if it would be any good.
Let me say that I am pleased to say that I was mistaken. I have been to Barriles twice now, and it has good food and decent accessibility. This time we were there with our friend, Tony, who kindly treated me to dinner for my birthday. Thank you, Tony!
I need to begin with the statement that the portions at Barriles are gigantic! We shared an appetizer of four beef empanadas (pronounced em-pah-nod-ahs, “An empanada is a stuffed bread or pastry baked or fried in many countries in Spain and Latin America. The name comes from the Spanish verb empanar, meaning to wrap or coat in bread.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empanada, 2016). The dough was crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. The ground beef was tender, and I loved the addition of the soft, earthy chunks of potatoes to the filling.
Our waitress was very kind, and she brought me a house salad even though it did not come with my entree. The house salad has iceberg lettuce, shredded carrots, and sliced cucumbers and tomatoes. It comes with a side of the house dressing. The dressing is both sweet and sour. I appreciated that I was given the salad very much. That being said, it was your standard restaurant house salad, and it was unremarkable.
Then came my enormous entree, the carne asada y arepa con queso (pronounced car-nay ah-sah-dah ee ah-ray-pah con kay-soh, meaning grilled steak and corn cake with cheese). The steak was tender, and perfectly seasoned. While I am not a big steak eater, I really enjoyed this one. The arepa was thin and slightly tough and chewy, but I loved the addition of the salty cheese on top. The portion was so big that I brought food home to eat the next day.
I enjoyed both experiences I have had at Barriles, and I look forward to my next visit. This is especially true when you consider how well they treated me as it pertained to accommodating me in my wheelchair.
Accessibility Rating for Barriles
I used my wheelchair to visit Barriles.
- Entryway – 4: There are two sets of wide, side-by-side doors. There is a set of exterior doors before a vestibule and a set of interior doors. There is a slight bump at the entrance. There are no stairs.
- Bathroom (Unisex designated accessible) – 4: They have a designated accessible bathroom which I really appreciate. I love that the owners had the foresight to have this bathroom installed to accommodate the disability community. The brightly lit, large bathroom has two grab bars around the toilet. I was easily able to make a 180° turn in the bathroom. The sink is up high enough that I was able to fit my legs comfortably under the sink which has a tall faucet and long handles. The only concern I had was that the paper towel dispenser is up very high on the wall.
- Walkways/Space – 3: The dimly lit space has three wide aisles flanked with moveable furniture throughout. Even though it was busy when we visited, I had no difficulty negotiating the space. Many of the tables have bars running across their length at ankle height. This made getting close to these tables challenging, but as you will read in my review of the staff, they were very accommodating. The smaller tables have central pedestals, and they do not have the bars underneath. It took some maneuvering, to be able to get close enough to our table. Since it is a sports bar and a restaurant, it was quite noisy from music and talking while we dined there.
Video Description: Interior of Barriles in Jackson Heights, Queens on December 2, 2016. The main aisle is shown with moveable tables and chairs in various group sizes shown on either side. People are dining throughout. The restaurant is dimly lit and loud. The bar is to the right, and huge flat screen televisions are hung up high around the perimeter showing various sporting events.
- Staff – 5: The staff was extremely accommodating. They allowed me to try three different tables to find the one that works best for me. They were very patient, and I was very impressed by this. They put two central pedestal tables together, and I was able to fit comfortably in the space between the two pedestals. They held the doors open for me upon our arrival and leaving. Since they were so good about meeting my needs, I will definitely keep Barriles on my short list of restaurants to return to.
- Braille Menus: They do not have Braille menus.