Location: 94 Christopher Street.
Cuisine: Traditional Cuban
Best Dish: The Rabo Encendido was superb! The meat was tender and well seasoned and went perfectly wth the savory rice and beans.
Overall: A charming eatery with a homestyle feel. Havana is a warm and inviting space with a friendly and knowledgeable staff. This space is ideal for intimate meals with a few well-behaved friends or a date with your significant other.
Down in the West Village on the famed Christopher Street, there is a little slice of Cuba. Havana Alma de Cuba is a quaint bistro just a quick walk from the Village Cigar Shop. Its warm interior features a beautifully painted collage of Cuban traditions and artistry. We must have walked past this venue a thousand times, thankfully we found the nerve to visit and indulge our senses.
We began our Cuban feast with classic empanadas and the Fufu con Camarones. The tasty empanadas were filled with tender shredded pork and served with a bright cachucha salsa.
Fufu is similar to Mangu a familiar Dominican dish. Both dishes are prepared with a base of mashed crispy green plantains. At Havana Alma de Cuba the mashed plantains are combined with succulent garlic shrimp and served with a delicious garlic sauce.
We washed down our appetizers with a round of cocktails. For a sweet drink, we recommend the Mi Tierra, made with pineapple infused rum lime juice and passion fruit. If you prefer sour try the Havana Sour, a strong mix of pisco and soursop topped with a fluffy egg white.
After our beverages, we were ready for the main event: the entrees. We started with a pork lovers dream, the Lechon Asado. This pork dish features piles of tender suckling pig piled high and served with steamed yucca and garlic mojo moros.
Our favorite dish of the evening was the Rabo Encendido, a delightful serving of braised oxtails with yellow rice and beans. The meat was melt in your mouth tender and smothered in a delectable red wine sauce.
Our last entree of the evening was the Valenciana Paella. This Paella has an amazing assortment of proteins. It is filled with chicken, chorizo, clam, shrimp and scallops.
We couldn’t leave without a sweet treat. We ended our night with a duo of desserts, coconut flan, and Tres leche cake. We love flan and Havana does it well the coconut flavor added an extra note of freshness to the smooth custard.
The cake was also delicious and not cloyingly sweet.
Havana Alma de Cuba brings traditional Cuban flavor to the west village. This restaurant isn’t just great food and superb service; The venue often has live music, dinner specials, and complimentary cigars, hand rolled by a local artisan. For information on all the specials and events at Havana Alma de Cuba visit their website!