La Bodeguita del Medio is a typical Havana restaurant of and one of the great sights of the city. Like the Floridita, it's a "must-see" place in Havana. You can not go to Havana without having a mojito in the Bodeguita and daiquiri in the Floridita, as Hemingway once said. Many visitors go there, famous and not so famous and you can leave your mark on the site with photos and by writing on the walls. You see names like Errol Flynn, Salvador Allende or mine. Maybe not the best mojito in Havana but still ...
I found this chain of pubs scattered all over the island. What really caught my attention were the queues in the street to enjoy 15 minutes tasting the ice cream. Once you are there, you sit at a table with other people that you do not know at all and ve aren´t at all bothered by you. In Cuba, queuing is a pretty usual thing (it is a result of socialization). I didn't see any other pubs in the street. Another thing which is very different are the hotels and sites for tourists. Socialization creates such situations that are repeated over and over in the transit stop, before a ration shop, or in a pharmacy.
This bar is located in the city of Havana at the beginning of its old town and close to the most central street most locals use because there are lots of bookstores, shops, bars, local craft markets, and local food vendors. This bar is famous for being a favorite of Hemingway, and is where he went to drink his daiquiris. The place is emblematic, not only because of its history, but also because of the people ve love to relive the past. It's not only a journey through culture but also through time. If you actually go to this place, or any other, you must be careful with the air conditioning. It's amazing but even being in the middle of the Caribbean, you will need a jacket. In 1820 it was called "La Piña de Plata" (the Silver Pineapple), and it was an English-style restaurant where you could eat lobster to your heart´s content, thanks to the work of a Catalan gentleman named Constanti Ribalaigua I Vert, under whose management the bar was called Constant. He began introducing inventive cocktails and he went on to create a whopping 200 mixed rum drinks. He used an ice crusher, we´re talking about the year 1920, and today they continue to use it, how cool!
This is a cocktail bar located in Trinidad in one of the oldest buildings in the city. There´s a lovely patio where you can listen to live music and try the famous drink that shares its name with the place. The Canchánchara is a popular Cuban drink made from rum, honey and lemon juice. The drink's origins are in the eastern region of the island but now it´s popular in Trindiad. The recipe is 2 ounces of brandy, 2 tablespoons honey and 1 teaspoon lemon juice mixed with ice.
Located in the Old Town Square, is a special place to drink a beer. The bar is located in a corner of the square and it is where you can order tubes of liters and serve yourself in your own glasses. Dinner is also usually filed, especially if you order shrimp, they serve you them with skewers of shrimp hanging on something like an ancient Roman hanger.
I recommend the Guajirito, and it´s true that almost all the taxi drivers will take you there. The place is fantastic and you can eat well there. I recommend going to the one by the cathedral and then taking a carriage, they will take you for a small fee. Great place!
In Havana there of course plenty of places to enjoy a mojito: Floridita, Bodeguita del Medio ... but personally, this is my favourite. Good atmosphere with live music by the Cuban group Hot Chocolate ... it's easy to spend hours here.
Definitely a discovery, is has a good value for money. The service is exceptional, I even dare to say ¨European¨ and Cuba is not always like this. The place is classy and also the presentation of the plates as well. The only problem is that you have to reserve with time because it is not very big and it gets filled. If you go once you will go again for sure.
After a tough trip to the heart of the earth in the Caves of St. Thomas, I was hungry and did not want to let go, so we went to the village of Viñales, which is little more than a nice street with colonial portals where they have developed an emerging catering sector. Almost all the houses that make up the street, big, colorful, are dedicated to service to tourism, either with souvenir stores, bars, etc . We found a great place to see, with tables on the porch, the passing of the life of the street, so we took a table with a view. When we got there the kitchen was about to close, so that the owner could offer little more than what was left, pasta dishes and salads with sauces to choose from. Hunger still haunted us so we ordered some spaghetti with bolognese sauce and shrimp. The portions were big, with lots of cheese, served in a deep dish and delicious. It was a shame not to have the whole card to choose, for sure the rest was too. Not usually of the ones I like eating outdoors, by flies and mosquitoes, but that day miraculously there was none, so I enjoyed my meal overlooking the Viñales life.
Away from the bustling and chaotic city center of Santa Clara on Maceo street in La Veguita is a tiny but well-stocked Constantino Perez tobacco shop. You can buy rum at great prices, great Montecristo cigars, Partagas and Romeo and Juliet which are manufactured by craftsmen in the factory across the street. The coffee shop in the back has AC, clean bathrooms and excellent coffee. The smell the aroma of rolled snuff is everywhere. The friendly employees guidance on the type of snuff we can bring to any security and bring to the table several samples was very helpful. We has the option to try the coffee or very cold Bucanero or Cristal beer.
The Nardos, part of the Asturian Society, in among the buildings in front of the Capitol: it's a great restaurant with exceptional Cuban cuisine, good service, and moderate prices. At the door, there are two doormen ve control the entrance, but just tell them that you want to go to Nardos (inside there are two more restaurants), they'll put you in line and then you're called. The restaurant is popular, especially among Cubans, but it is worth the wait. I hope you like it.
Here you can see nightly performances in a relaxed setting. With tables and seats surrounding the scene and a dance floor, and the décor reminds one of an American cabaret in the 50s, full of old cars, motorcycles and gas stations. Entrance is 5/10 dollars.
The place is very nice, cozy and friendly. The attention and speed of service perfect, we ate very well at a reasonable price, it is very close to the main square and as in many of the restaurants in Cuba, called "tastes" , to get to the dining room you go through what appears to be a living room, surely you'll meet the grandmother and greet her before you start eating.
The palate Dona blanquita is worth a trip, the food is fantastic and the views even better. It is found in the center of the Prado. You have to go looking because the poster is at the end of the stairs that go up towards the paladar. Also, since there is no commission to be taken there, you will find a thousand people that will tell you where it is, when in reality their intention is to make you go somewhere else. Don´t forget to try the old clothes.
In addition to dining fantastically, one could see the oldest ceiba in Trinidad, it was not our case because we went to dinner but if you go to eat it is responsible for shading the tables. Do not be scared by people in the streets if they want to accompany you to the restaurants and we knew this thanks to Chichi, a cute Cuban who was responsible, even though the first attempt was unsuccessful because the place was full. In the end we finally ended up having dinner there.
It was on my second trip to Cuba, which coincidentally enough a friend took me to. It's a 39 floor building and on the top floor is where the La Torre restaurant is. You can have a few mojitos while being astonished by the spectacle that was erected here, the atmosphere is very nice. And there's always something to munch on. Take time to contemplate the superb view. I went back a few times, eating a meal in the restaurant with a touch of Cuban-French haughtiness. It's worth it!
If you want to enjoy the atmosphere of the golden 20s and 30s in Cuban, you should visit this very elegant-looking restaurant with luxurious décor, large mirrors and paintings, bow-tied waiters, and live piano and violin music. It is a re-creation of the atmosphere of the pre-revolution aristocrats. Very charming.
It is just one of the restaurants you find on Bishop Street, the price is decent (not cheap nor expensive) and the fish and lobster are good. It´s not necessary to order meat unless you want your jaw to hurt from chewing it so much. With the menu there is a mojito and a live band.