It's Westport's newest hot spot.

The highly anticipated Wednesday opening reception for the Little Barn restaurant at the former Dairy Queen property on Post Road East was briefly upstaged when fire erupted in a trash bin next to the new eatery.

But the blaze was quickly extinguished before the crowd arrived to celebrate the evening's opening of the pub-style restaurant at 1050 Post Road East. Guests were treated to complimentary hors d'oeuvres and drinks in the fully renovated building, which fluidly adapts the shape of the iconic DQ structure into a warm and rustic setting that evokes its "barn" moniker.

Jeff Tass, the Little Barn general manager, said, "Some of the management style is carried over from the Chelsea, the Fairfield restaurant also owned by Scott Beck and Kevin McHugh," who collaborated on the Little Barn.

"The executive chef, Jeff Spence, is overseeing the upscale pub-style menu," Tass said.

"We're really excited; we built an awesome space," co-owner Beck said. "Kevin (McHugh) and I grew up in Westport. This is an old iconic building. We sourced material from all over the country to give the Little Barn this look."

Little Barn management has hired about 20 employees for the front of the house and 15 for the back. The restaurant's seating capacity is about 85 to 90 patrons, and outdoor seating will provide for an additional 35.

Little Barn, 1050 Post Road East. For information, call 203-557-8501 or visit