Barrio Soho

Bars and pubs Soho
 (FernandoBA photography)
FernandoBA photography
Venue says We have a passion for killer cocktails, fresh cooking and great music. Have you been to our basement club?

Please note: since this review was published, Barrio Central has changed its name to Barrio Soho. Eating & Drinking editors March 2016.

Where once shone the Amber bar, you’ll now find the strikingly Latino Barrio Central. The main street-level bar comprises a narrow room lined with glass-topped tables, effectively display cases for comics, games and knick-knacks that exude playful character. A park bench and greenery at the back also offer decorative variety.

The drinks menu, ‘in Spanglish’, is categorised by region or country: a Brazilian Lady (Abelha cachaça and passionfruit) complements manly Quilmes beer from Buenos Aires; a Mayan Magic (dark chocolate, chilli, agave and Cazadores tequila) represents

Central America; a Hispaniola Spell (Brugal rum, shochu, jasmine, mint and ginger), the Caribbean; and so on.

Bloody big Barrio burgers, sandwiches and burritos are filled with slow-roasted pulled pork and other grilled meats.


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Barrio Soho says
Barrio Soho is a cocktail bar, Latin cantina and jumping basement club located in the heart of Soho, minutes from Oxford Circus. With a warm and welcoming neighbourhood vibe, we have a passion for killer cocktails, fresh cooking and great music. Early week, unwind after work in one of our cosy corners and take in some live music. It's also worth taking in some of our fine rums, tequila and mezcal, if you're that way inclined. DJs feature at the weekend, when we become one of the best Soho party basements. Rest assured, you're in safe hands when it comes to any occasion, book now!
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Venue name: Barrio Soho
Address: 6 Poland Street
Opening hours: Open 4pm-1am Mon-Fri; 3pm-1am Sat; 3-11pm, Sun.
Transport: Tube: Oxford Circus or Tottenham Court Rd tube
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Average User Rating

4.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:18
  • 4 star:8
  • 3 star:4
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:2
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I love Barrio, having also visited East and North branches on more occasions than I care to remember! This one isn't quite as good as the others as it's pretty narrow and compact, but they still have a top notch cocktail selection. Great place to start off your night.


We spent a good few hours here during happy hour on a Saturday between brunch and our evening reservation. You can reserve a table for free and it was fairly quiet but they brought over 10 free shots for our table and 2 complimentary bowls of nachos to keep us happy! The music is contagious and after a few cheap cocktails we were shimmying our shoulders and threatening to break into dance. Perfect for what it is.

Fun and funky favela chic. Fire and theatre when it comes to cocktails, sweet as happy hour, tasty tacos and banging tunes with a few guilty pleasures until late in the basement.


Barrio Soho makes me feel old. Actually scratch that. Barrio Soho makes me feel ancient. Neither of these things are the fault of the bar but as somewhere I’d been told was great for cheesy dancing and cheap drinks, it definitely came up short.

It’s incredibly loud – not a negative if the music is decent and you’ve got a DJ who cares about the people he’s playing it for. The night we went for a friend’s birthday drinks, our Pete Tong wannabe – am I showing my age there? – refused to take requests and spent the whole evening disjointedly flitting from one thunderous unknown dance remix to another. Every now and then he’d throw us a bone in the form of Rihanna or Queen B but then he’d take it personally that we got so excited and punish us by playing yup, you guessed it, another hour of thunderous unknown dance remixes. Dude, come on. You’re in Soho on a Friday night – lighten up and give us the Gaga, the Gomez or the Grande.

It’s also gets crazy busy – by 9pm, the whole of the cramped sweaty downstairs was a pulsating sea of people jostling for space at the bar, tunneling their way through the crowds for a comfort break at the very back of the room or pushing onto the dance floor. Sure I knew it would be busy and of course I expected it to be somewhat chaotic but I didn’t expect there to be quite so much attitude on display which was less than appealing to be around.

What looked like an Ikea shed in the corner of the dance floor provided our group with a welcome space in which to feel comfortable and set up base camp away from some of the heaviest snoggers – showing my age again there I know! – I’ve seen outside of a 15 years old’s Rollerworld party and staff were nice, polite & friendly when bringing drinks or taking empties but these things just weren’t enough to make me want to venture back. If I’m going out to dance, I want it to be to music I know and if I’m going out to drink, I want to be able to perch my derriere and my cocktail down for a few seconds without fear of spillage from the face-sucking millennials jumping around me. Kids, this place is all yours. 


Barrio tries very hard for an authentic Latino vibe, and if you’ve never visited South America you’d probably be reasonably impressed. Primary colour decor (my inner goth enjoyed the skull wallpaper), loud music and Spanish speaking staff. Ah, no, scrap the last one, if it was based on language alone we could have sworn we were in Poland, or possibly Latvia. The Montemelon cocktail was drinkable and nachos actually pretty good. Staff a bit too dim for my liking, even a simple request of ‘Could you please light our candle’ was met with ‘But I don’t have a lighter’. Maybe go and get one love? You need to navigate downstairs for a comfort break, which means as early evening became later throngs of drunken people to negotiate and a split eardrum. It was okay, I wouldn’t avoid it but equally won’t make the effort to return.

Tip: Don’t go in the evening if you’re over 35, you will feel OLD.


Staff were very friendly, but the whole place was just too loud, with not enough places to sit down on a busy Saturday night. I just think I'm too old for this sort of place (at the ripe old age of 27...)


Popped in here last night for "one cocktail" and left after three and a shot of tequila. The amaretto sour in here is to die for - it's not on the menu. Order it anyway and you won't be disappointed. This is a lively cocktail bar with haphazard decor everywhere - it's part tiki bar, part mexican, part who freaking knows.... but the music is cheesy and fun, and I've never had a bad time here. There's a downstairs bar if you fancy a boogie, and it gets very busy on Thur-Sat. 

My friend and I had birthday drinks here and had the best night! I've had lots of my friends comment to me afterwards what a terrific venue it was and how much they enjoyed it! The cocktails were brilliant and the bar staff really good fun and excellent at recommendations. Atmosphere was great and it was perfect that it wasn't too crowded. Also felt the drinks were reasonably priced - especially for decent cocktails.

I went there with my friend on Monday night. Decoration is ok but drinks and cocktails are extremely over-priced. However, we stayed to try the place. At the bar there were 5 people waiting for drinks. The rastafarian bartender was kind of flirting with one of them so he stayed there a rather long time. All in all we must have waited there 30 min. When he finally became available instead of coming over to ask for drinks he shouted us from the other side of the bar. I don't mind having to wait because the bartender is providing a personalized customer service to the one before me but when t's me time at least treat me decently. I politely asked him to come over but he continued asking for drinks from far so I said I didn't wanted anything just for him to replied if I didn't wanted anything I could leave. He also shouted this out loud in front of all my friends and other customers. If you keep people waiting at least say "sorry". Obviously, I wanted to leave but didn't want to spoil my GF's cousin birthday party so I stayed. My friend persuaded me to order something so I send him to get me a glass of "Fernet" which I had seen in the bar. They had to call me to go to the bar to point out where the Fernet bottle where because he didn't know it. This guy allow himself to tell people to go away but he doesn't even know the products he sells??? Disappointing. I'll never come back and won't recommend it to anyone.

I've lived in London all my life and this is one of my favourite places to go. The team are brilliant, and it feels more like you're out with the whole bar than being served by them. If you want somewhere a little quirky, with great live music and food then give it a try, you won't be disappointed!

I was taken here on a date and I absolutely loved it! The cocktails were amazing and the nachos were to die for...probably the best nachos I have ever had. Would recommend to go here as the atmosphere is also great.

I happened to stumble across the Barrio Central bar at the weekend! Now I consider myself quite the Mojito ‘connoisseur’ and I can honestly say that they were awesome! Very impressed! Next time I’m in London I will be sure to go back!

This place makes for a great night out - alot of fun. Intimate and lively atmosphere with great music. Not your averge Central London bar :)

We booked a table at Barrio Central for Amigo hour (that’s 6pm-8pm- so 2 hours really, where cocktails are around half price –about £5 each- and you get £5 off the cheaper bottles of wine, making them about £12/£13) for five of us on a Tuesday night. Even on a Tuesday, booking is advisable, as it was very busy. Once we got sat down , we ordered lots of lovely things -a very impressive wooden platter with all sorts of things on designed for 3 or 4 people to share, nachos, several cocktails and a couple of bottles of wine-which the lovely waitress remembered perfectly without writing anything down which was very impressive. They gave us tap water without us asking, and the food (and drinks) arrived speedily and were really, really nice. Best things ordered were the calamari and the patatas bravas but everything was pretty good. The cocktails were delicious, although far too easy to drink and so went down very quickly. Good job we had the back-up wine. Service was attentive and quick but without making us feel at all rushed, atmosphere was lively, perhaps a little loud but that seemed more and more appropriate the more we drank, as I’m sure we got a bit louder too. I got the feeling it would be a very party atmosphere indeed late at night and at the weekends. We didn’t go downstairs but by the looks of it there was another bar and a club-type area there. If we hadn’t been en route to the soho theatre to see some late night comedy we would definitely have ended up making our way downstairs to carry on the party. In fact, we intend to return very soon to do just that!

I would highly recommend - the burritos are great, as are the cocktails, and the atmosphere is fab from the beginning of the night until the end. Really nice and friendly staff, as well.

Definitely worth a visit. Booked an area for a few friends and I on a Sunday evening. Booking process was quick and easy and when we got there the staff were lovely and very attentive. Great mojitos and the nachos were delicious. Generally a really nice atmosphere and I would heartily recommend it. We'll definitely be coming back.

Barrio Central is a fabulous place for delicious cocktails and yummy bites! Although incredible busy, well let’s say lively, the table service is excellent and quite speedy - the staff do their best to look after you. The atmosphere is really spirited and upbeat (I am sure the cocktails help!) and the music was super! If you book ahead early enough, there’s a variety of locations to reserve – we had the ‘Loveshack’, and so had a enough space to have a dance in too – not sure that was a good thing for the rest of the bar though!

Always fun, lively, and friendly people. Thoroughly recommend, whether with a big group of friends or on as a date.

One of the worst places to go to in Soho (and London in general..). The bouncer is basically a tall humanoid prick with no manners and the rest of the employees simply don't care about that or whether you are an unsatisfied customer. The attitude of the place is this : "We are here to take your money and we don't care about anything else!" "If you don't like it leave now!" "London is a big place and there are plenty of people in line waiting to take your place you ungrateful cheap bastard!" I went there for the first time (even had my company's name on the list) and while I was entering the place the bouncer grabbed my back from behind and basically pulled me backwards. That was his way of saying : "Please remove your bag from your back. I'm afraid this is not allowed inside." Later on I went outside to make a call and the bouncer just gave me a cold stare and pointed his finger at me "telling" me I should move. I Put the phone down and asked why he was being disrespectful, treating me like sheep, without actually talking to me. He then started yelling at me, flapping his hands and telling me in bad (that's broken and impolite..) in english : "Move there!! My friend came out looking for me I told him that we are leaving, and as we were leaving the bouncer spat towards us. If you don't want to be treated like sheep with money.. Stay away from Barrio Central at all costs.

Had a fantastic time at Barrio Central on Saturday 3rd Sep celebrating my 30th! I would definitely recommend booking an area (we got the dance floor seats in the basement which was perfect for 15-20) and also getting there while you can still take advantage of Happy Hour where cocktails are only £4.50. The staff were lovely, and although it does get busy, it just helps make for a really fun boozy night of dancing. I also found the booking so easy to sort, and everyone was so helpful and friendly. A tiny mix up on the booking area resulted in a free bottle of bubbly for me and my party - I couldn't fault them at all. Brilliant night - will be back soon!

I had my birthday at Barrio Bar Soho on Friday the 7th of September. Being the disorganised lady I am I left it until the Sunday night the week before to book a space! I was advised that Friday is the busiest day and after receiving confirmation that my request was being looked into the next day I received an email saying there was no space :( However a lovely Lady called Rose kept in contact with me the whole week and managed to sort out a reserved area on the dance floor for 10 and a 25 person guest list! The bar has a lovely Spanish and Caribbean flavour and mixed with the Cocktails you really feel like you are on holiday! The waitress was very helpful, the DJ played a mix of old school hip hop and latin inspired mixes and the food was divine! I will definitely be back-this place has a great funky chilled ambience it is well worth arriving in time for the happy hour!

This is a great venue for a really fun night out with a bunch of friends. We reserved a table for my birthday and the booking manager was really helpful and accommodating from the beginning. We had an area reserved upstairs so, we could sit and chat but still enjoy the music. Book an area downstairs if you want to be on the dance floor! Make sure you book well in advance so, you can choose from the different themed seating areas to suit your requirements. Table service is patient & served with a smile. We enjoyed working our way through the cocktail menu and the decor is funky and adds to the whole experience. Will be back!

Had my birthday party there on 14th July and booked out an area. Staff was very friendly asn was quick to move people from outside our party seating there. The food was absolutely delicious and when I asked the waitress for '2 of everything' she was nice to point out their amazing food platters :-) Cocktails and sangria was pretty good too and the music and atmosphere was really fun. Overall a great night out, only thing I was expecting but didn't have is tables on my area as there were quite a few of us eating and could have done with a surface to put things down!

Celebrated my birthday in Barrio Central and had a great night - it did get quite busy so reserving an area or table is a must!

Had my birthday at Barrio earlier this month, and it was absolutely fantastic. Great music and a great atmosphere, and of course delicious cocktails. Barrio never lets you down!

We organised an events for clients and we had a fantastic time! The waitress Klara was very helpful and hard-working despite it being very busy! The drinks were delicious and the atmosphere was second to none. Would definitely come again!

My friends and I spend the afternoon/evening here for my birthday last weekend, and we had a brilliant time. The staff were a lot of fun, and the 'Amigo Hour' cocktail menu was great value. The food was lovely too - especially the nachos! It did get incredibly busy from 7pm-ish onwards, so I would recommend getting there early or booking a table.

I came here also to celebrate my birthday and so I reserved the 'Love Shack' area downstairs and it was totally brilliant, the music was great and the place was buzzing with a fun and excitable atmosphere. Due to the fact the place was so busy it was a little tricky to get drinks at the bar, however this is the price you pay for a busy and popular place. Staff were also friendly and Rose was most helpful in helping me organise the booking for my birthday and also checking back to see if I had a good time there which I thought was really thoughtful. So go and check it out !! I was really impressed and can't wait to go again!

I came here to celebrate my birthday on Good Friday, it was a great night, easily located in soho near to tube stations and on a street where a few of my group were able to park their cars. Getting in and to our table was a smooth process, we arrived in time for happy hour and order some nice and strong tasting cocktails and food from the menu. One of our group has a gluten intolerence and the staff where very helpful in checking what would be ok or not. The music was a great mix and the atmosphere was really good. I would defo recommend this place for groups of people that want a good night with decent cocktails and an even better atmosphere.

A fantastic gem of a bar, located just off Oxford Circus - perfect for mid-shopping drinks, after work cocktails, or even a night on the tiles... I had my birthday at Barrio Central, having really enjoyed what barrio north had to offer. The happy hour was brilliant - £4 for cocktails that strong is a bargain, my old favourite the mojito was expertly made upon demand, and the long island iced teas were delicious (yet beware of/take advantage of the strength!!). The barrio team were all so accomodating - especially Rose, who oragnised an area for 20 people (for free!) - they even through a bottle of bubbly in for my birthday. All in all, great drinks, good music (not too loud so you cant hear one another but loud enough so you can enjoy the beats) and great atmosphere - havent tried the food but will definitely be back for more at some point soon. Keep it going guys, don't change your winning formula and the customers will keep on coming!

I brought a hen group to Barrio Central on Saturday night - it was definitely one of the highlights of our day. Reserving an area beforehand was very easy (good on-line forms, friendly emails from the bar). When we turned up, the drinks were very good, ambiance excellent. In particular, the service was very well paced - they were on hand to take orders whenever we wanted, handled a lot of orders without making mistakes, but they were never in your face or hovering too close. Great place. And of course the long happy hour makes it ideal for parties.