Traveled back to Bonanza Street for lunch Tue 6/30/09 over to Havana & sooo glad I did! I've passed this restaurant many times on my lunch walks in dwntn Walnut Creek & driven by the one in Alameda many times as well...now I'm a Havana fan =)
LOCATION & RESTAURANT: Next to Fujian Restaurant, the view outside upfront looks small, but this place opens up to quite spacious & clean restaurant. Meter parking all over this place, else garage parking on Cypress Ave & Locust Ave (about 1-block South). Color schemes are a tropical blue & green w/ comfy seating tables & booths & a welcoming bar area too. Just sitting here about 1-2min enjoying the scenery of the place, I just loved it...the decor, music, & seating is simply welcoming to anyone.
SERVICE: Great! Colleague & I arrived 5-10min before noon (the lunch crowd) so there was only one other table taken. Hostess/Waitress greets us w/ a pleasant smile & ""welcome"" upon entrance & let us chose where we wanted to be seated. Didn't catch her name, but this Hostess/Waitress basically was covering the floor w/ greeting, seating, order taking, & follow-up. Other colleagues of hers brought out food to other patrons @ times & also did follow-up. By the time we finished our lunch, this place was decently 1/3 full. Great service all around tho...keep up the good work team ;-)
DRINKS: Havana Mojitos range $7-$9 & are delicious! They have ""Mojito Mondays"" apparently too (half off). Colleague had De Corazo (Silver Tiquilia, Chambord) & I had De Mango (Parrot Bay Mango Rum)...both were excellente.
FOOD: Fresh, hot, tasty, juicy, & just damn good! The chef is definitely cookin' w/ ""cuban"" love up in here! We shared the Crab Cakes which were 2 lil' cute palm-fitting cakes that had a nice crunch on the outside yet a soft bite of crab of on the inside; the Pineapple Aioli sauce added nicely to these hot cakes & greenery. My colleage had the ""Bistec a la Havana"" & I kid you not this marinated skirt steak was served grilled & juicy perfectly...of course I tasted this, so I can vouch my own opinion on this dish. I got the ""Chicken Adobe""..the Filipina in me jumped on this 'cuz I saw ""adobe"" *tee-hee*. It wasn't a Filipino chkn adobe dish, but rather adobe seasoning I believe for the chkn. Another grilled & juicy entree that brings taste satisfaction. All this was scrum-didly-umptous!
Final tab just over $59. Everything we ate & drank gets a recommendation, as well as this location! Would I come back? Absolutely! I'd do this location again & very much tempted to try out the Alameda location now. Patrons next to me on this luncheon enjoyed a salad & a pressed sandwich...I don't think I was starrin' @ the gent's sandwich (that's what I tell myself), but it looked reeeeally good as he enjoyed it. My 1st taste of ""Cuban Cuisine"" & came out very pleased.
Pros: Great food & customer service with tasty mojitos
Cons: Larger dessert menu