Nestled away in a bustling Arcadia plaza, The Barn offers guests a little escape from Los Angeles with its unique atmosphere, specialty skewers, and hard to come by Asian fusion cuisine. It is the perfect place to unwind, enjoy your evening, or simply have a taste of something new. We are excited to introduce Vincent Lu, founder and owner of The Barn, who shares how his journey to fulfilling “the American Dream” brought him to creating a welcoming and community orientated culinary experience for all to enjoy.
Vincent and his family first moved to the United States from Guangdong, China in 1997. Vincent was 19 at the time, and enrolled at California State University of Los Angeles as a finance major. After graduating, Vincent explored a variety of jobs and spent time working at car dealerships, airports, and even did international trading. He shared, “On my quest to attain ‘the American dream,’ I realized that I wanted to pursue a career that made me happy.” And that career was none other than food and opening The Barn.
The Barn has an unassuming storefront, but once you step instead you are instantly in a warm and intimate environment. String lights that run across the ceiling providing a wash of ambient lighting, and tin walls covered in art and decor give the comforting and funky vibe of being at your favorite night market stall. The concept is unique and was inspired by Vincent’s personal life. He loves to host social events at home for close friends and family, and was inspired while developing The Barn because he “wanted to emulate the same type of positive energy that was present during [his] family and friend gatherings.”
The Barn is known for its special ambiance and delicious assortment of skewers and drinks, but where it really shines is Vincent and The Barn’s humble dedication to service and community. Vincent prides himself in creating a “family-like work culture” for his employees that really feeds into the quality of service and food that guests receive. He says, “While our restaurant does have fantastic food, one of the most unique aspects of The Barn is the wam and loving embrace of all our staff members. In order to ensure a positive experience for customers, all of our staff members are trained to be inviting, understanding, and accommodative to our guests. We at The Barn believe that just having good food is not enough to uphold the integrity of our restaurant! This is why we strive to offer the best customer service and staff.” Vincent also focuses heavily on quality control and names it as one of the most challenging aspects of running the restaurant. Many of the menu items require intricate experience, so he spends a lot of time training the staff at The Barn to ensure a high quality and uniform dining experience for all guests.
Vincent is also very proud to be a restaurant owner in the San Gabriel Valley and treasures the special community. “I feel honored to serve such a diverse population of individuals,” he tells us, “This community is something that I highly value and I plan to continue bringing the community together through great food, drinks, and laughter!” Vincent takes inclusivity seriously, and when asked about what message he wants to convey to eaters, he says that he wants everyone to feel that, “The Barn is a safe space for all individuals.” Vincent says that The Barn has practically become his second home, and because of this his objective is to make all customers feel as if they are guests in his home. Vincent shares, “At The Barn our values are intertwined with our food selection. Our menu consists of a fusion of different Asian cultures, which caters to a wide pool of individuals! We want to foster a diverse and inclusive environment where customers can bond with one other and cherish good moments!”
Like with many restaurants, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected order numbers and revenue at The Barn. Vincent has been getting through this tough time with the support of his wife and son, and says that, “At the end of the day, I really just want the best for my family.” He is also motivated by regular customers and doesn’t want to disappoint them. While the restaurant business can be tough, Vincent says that the most rewarding feeling is seeing customers enjoy the food. “When customers return to our restaurant or recommend The Barn to their friends, it warms my heart to know that people enjoy the restaurant I have built from the ground up,” he shares. After the pandemic, Vincent plans on opening additional locations of The Barn. He and his wife also have plans for new restaurants! He says, “I wish I could tell my younger self to work harder and not waste any time on certain aspects of life that did not benefit me. Life is too short!”
Visit The Barn!
Address: 815 W Naomi Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007
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