As of Oct. 4, the beloved campus restaurant and bar, The Barn, has reopened after being closed since late 2021. Currently, only the patio is open to the public on Monday through Friday from 4 to 8 p.m., but students are eager to return and experience its charm.

The Barn, a UCR landmark established in 1917, was previously closed for a two-year renovation but reopened during the summer of 2021. During this opening, the restaurant saw success in their new venue and revised menu. 

The Barn was forced to shut down again in December due to the rise in COVID cases and state restrictions, additional issues of restaurants on campus being understaffed caused The Barn to be closed until now. Currently, 10 student staff members are working at The Barn, but more are needed to fully open it. 

“During the start of the quarter, I was working at Glasgow to help support them,” stated Barn manager Julie Zeno. 

Keeping Glasgow, UCR’s newest residential dining restaurant, staffed has been the main priority of dining services since school started. Lothian’s dining hall was also closed to support Glasgow. 

The limited staff, however, has not caused The Barn to lose out on clientele. Although it has only been open for two weeks, the restaurant has seen the venue busy during its Thursday and Friday evenings. 

“I think it’s great that we have a place on campus where we can go to destress for a bit with friends. It adds variety and a change of scenery to UCR,” expressed fourth-year mechanical engineering major Samantha Macuixtle.

One misconception students may have of The Barn is that they need to be 21 or older to visit since alcohol is served on the premises. Students, faculty and community members of all ages are welcomed. Appetizers and soda are also served for those not of legal drinking age. Alcoholic drinks are served in a black cup, while non-alcoholic ones are served in a red cup to distinguish the difference. 

One stark feature of the restaurant is their citrus beer collection that is unique to the campus. These beers change seasonally and are infused with citrus grown at UCR. They are produced in partnership with Ironfire Brewing in Temecula. Beer, wine and other cocktails are also served at The Barn.

Students who previously socialized at The Barn may recall attending concerts or other live events there. Due to COVID, there have not been any performances since the renovation, but events are expected to return soon. 

“Our goal is to have live entertainment throughout the week,” stated Zeno excitedly.  

The UCR Dining Services website describes the new Barn as being able to offer “a great music experience paired with an excellent menu.” They refer to the services of The Barn as “dining, drinks and distractions.”

To help welcome students, ample heaters are placed throughout the patio along with various games groups can play together, like corn hole, during this period before live entertainment starts up again. 

The Barn patio may only be open for the time being, but as staffing issues resolve, it plans to reopen the rest of its venue in phases. The first phase has proven to be successful as students and community members have long-awaited for the restaurant to reopen and provide a hang out bar on campus. In the coming months, The Barn is expected to once again fully reopen and reclaim its stellar reputation.