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Desperate for good Cuban food!

dblaya6 Feb 26, 2007 02:41 PM

Tried Versaille on Pico...really let me down. Any good, authentic Cuban restaurants in Los Angeles?

  1. d
    DiningOUT Jun 22, 2007 03:43 AM

    The Havana Cafe is family run and very authentic. The food is great and they have a bakery section. This place is highly recommneded by my Cuban friends. As a side note, try the flan... yum!

    Havana Cafe
    11402 Old River School Rd
    Downey, CA 90241
    (562) 776-7251

    1. i
      ickster Mar 2, 2007 11:55 AM

      I agree with El Criollo in the Valley> Great Ropa Vieja, lechon asado, maduros, tostones and specials. Family run place.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ickster
        Cubancoffee Jun 21, 2007 06:36 PM

        I picked up a Cuban sandwich with a side of black beans & rice today at La Caridad, 2137 W. Temple. So far, so good. Will try one of their specials next time. The joint has a counter with about eight stools and a few tables and a blackboard menu above the grill. The cook, an older Cuban gentleman, was frying tostones and platanos maduros as he jabbered ageeably with the clientele. Has anyone else tried this place?

      2. c
        chowchi1 Feb 27, 2007 05:15 PM

        Havana Beach Cafe in Montrose is very good and run by a Cuban family. http://www.havanabeachcafe.com/home.html

        1. ozzygee Feb 27, 2007 03:29 PM

          If you're in Burbank and don't want to shell out for Guantanamera, Mambos Cafe in the Glendale end of Victory is decent for sandwiches, and their signature chicken dish is pretty damn good.

          1. a
            aseroter Feb 27, 2007 03:14 PM

            Felix in Orange (if you find yourself in Orange County) - total mom & pop, great great prices, good wine and fantastic food! Portions are huge, so go hungry!!

            1. s
              stuartontour Feb 27, 2007 02:52 PM

              El Floridita does not have good food, but it's a fun place to go, especially on Mondays, where it's a very popular salsa dancing night.

              I like Rincon Criollo and El Colmao, personally.

              1. h
                HelloMaryLu Feb 27, 2007 02:39 PM

                If you're in for a drive--- come out to Coco Palms on the top of the hill at I-10 and Fairplex.
                http://www.cocopalmrestaurant.com/ It's the real deal of great Cuban dining and dancing.

                1. m
                  monkey Feb 27, 2007 02:23 PM

                  I am also from Miami and have lived here for 7 years now and have found nothing close to even La Carreta (let alone Versailles on 8th street) quality food in Los Angeles. Good luck let me know your findings...

                  1. j
                    justla Feb 27, 2007 01:43 PM

                    I've had El Cochinito and Rincon Criollo and was not impressed at all with either one. I hear that EL Floridita is really good. Haven't been but that's what I've heard.

                    1. h
                      HungryLA Feb 27, 2007 12:13 PM

                      Lala's on Melrose is Argentinian, but great. Does that count??!

                      1. e
                        estone888 Feb 27, 2007 11:37 AM

                        I like most things at El Cochinito. The roast pork is usually excellent, as is the roast chicken, the empanizada is excellent, the paella is very good, the spicy shrimp in tomato sauce is great, the chicken soup is great, ropa vieja, picadillo - occasionally I've felt like they're having an off night, but most of the time it's all very good.

                        1. d
                          dblaya6 Feb 27, 2007 10:39 AM

                          I'm checking out El Cochinito tomorrow night and will add El Colmo and El Rincon Criollo to my lists for this weekend and next!

                          1. Drehound Feb 26, 2007 06:31 PM

                            I love Felix in Orange!

                            1. s
                              sel Feb 26, 2007 05:35 PM

                              I used to really like El Rincon Criollo because the chow was tastier and priced lower than Versailles Restaurant, plus it was much smaller and not as noisy as Versailles. Both the Roast Chicken and Roast Pork were good, served with the usual Black Beans, White Rice and Plantains . Guanabana Shake was also yummy! The older waitresses didn't speak much English but were always very sweet. It has been a long time since I've been there so maybe someone else has a recent report.

                              El Rincon Criollo
                              4361 Sepulveda Blvd
                              Culver City, CA 90230-4715


                              1. e
                                Ernie Feb 26, 2007 05:09 PM

                                La Cubana in Glendale

                                1. Das Ubergeek Feb 26, 2007 03:29 PM

                                  I like El Criollo on Victory and Fulton in Valley Glen and Guantanamera at Five Points in Burbank.

                                  1. r
                                    Rae Feb 26, 2007 03:23 PM

                                    My Cuban friend and I like El Colmao better than Havana Mania or El Cochinito although El Cochinito comes in a close 2nd.

                                    El Colmao
                                    2328 W. Pico Bl.
                                    Los Angeles, CA 90006
                                    (213) 386-6131
                                    [just west of Hoover on Pico]

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: Rae
                                      Hershey Bomar Feb 26, 2007 03:26 PM

                                      What to order at El Cochinito? I always thought people ate their because Allegria was cash only.

                                      1. re: Hershey Bomar
                                        Rae Feb 26, 2007 03:42 PM

                                        I usually get the shrimp in tomato sauce. Once I got some fried pork chunks that were pretty good and of course the usual black beans and rice. But like I said - I like all of this better at El Colmao.

                                        Dang, now I want some!

                                        1. re: Hershey Bomar
                                          themirthmobile Mar 2, 2007 03:57 PM

                                          get the lechon asado.

                                      2. d
                                        dblaya6 Feb 26, 2007 02:51 PM

                                        Good to know! I'll check it out. I'm Cuban too - from Miami. So I'm in withdrawal.

                                        1. e
                                          estone888 Feb 26, 2007 02:49 PM

                                          I'm partial to El Cochinito on Sunset in Silverlake. I have a couple of Cuban friends, who have a lot of Cuban friends, and they eat there regularly - and happily.

                                          1. g
                                            gretcheng Feb 26, 2007 02:45 PM

                                            Have you tried Havana Mania in Hawthorne off of Inglewood Ave? Not as greasy/oily as Versaille. Great pork & oxtail.

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