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Business Buzz: Barnwood Grill

Since February 14, customers have been pouring through the doors to sample the fare offered at Barnwood Grill, 5 Queen Street, nestled next to the Bottle Stop and Caraluzzi’s Newtown Market. The official opening for Barnwood Grill was February 12. Then one of last winter’s many storms shut down the restaurant the following day for 24 hours, said owners Simi Polozani of Newtown and Denard Brahimag of New York. It was just a brief pause in what has otherwise been a successful opening, they said.

“We’ve been very busy. People like the décor, the food, and the atmosphere,” Mr Polozani said. “A lot of people tell us that they feel like they are in Manhattan in here,” he said.

This is the first restaurant for Mr Polozani and Mr Brahimag, but between them, they have 25 years experience working in other New York and Connecticut restaurants.

“We’ve always wanted to open our own restaurant,” Mr Polozani said. When he saw that the Queen Street space was open, it took him only a week to talk his friend into delving into the restaurant business.

Mr Polozani has also been involved in the construction of several restaurants, a huge plus as he designed and built Barnwood Grill. The restaurant takes its name from the décor. Ceilings, floors, and walls are made from barn wood reclaimed from Pennsylvania and Connecticut barns, or reclaimed bricks.

The 130-seat restaurant — plus 40 more seats on the patio — features contemporary American cuisine that follows a seasonal menu. “Chef Jay” oversees the Barnwood Grill kitchen, bringing his many years of experience from Vallbela Restaurant in Greenwich.

Soups, salads, specialty burgers, and wraps make up the lunch menu, along with main course entrees including salmon, lemon chicken, grilled pork chop, and pasta dishes. East and West Coast oysters are available from the raw bar.

An extensive dinner menu includes a price fixed menu for $28, in addition to the other entrees. Nearly 20 appetizer options give customers a wide selection to start the meal.

The owners suggest saving room for dessert, including the crème brûlée and citrus mousse cake, made on site.

Barnwood Grill offers a full bar, as well as a complete wine and beer menu.

A children’s menu is always available. Beginning in June, Barnwood Grill will feature free lunch or dinner for children under the age of 10 every Monday and Tuesday. “This is part of our involvement with the national No Kids Hungry program,” Mr Polozani said. Any donations for the meals will go to support No Kids Hungry.

Barnwood Grill is open from 11 am to 3 pm for lunch, and from 3 to 10 pm for dinner, seven days of the week. A new brunch menu will be offered, Saturday and Sunday, from 11:30 am to 3 pm, beginning in June. For more information call 203-491-2215 or visit barnwoodgrill.com.

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