Lobster in Habana… La Guarida & the magic of Cuba

270Humid days, the hum of speedy vintage cars, a kaleidoscope of colour and the water of the Malecón.  Oh how I wish I was still there! Habana, Cuba, is a city one must visit to truly understand. My words will not do it justice, that I know.  My experience of Habana was vibrant, lively and filled with exotic food.  What the Cubans do well is seafood.  La Guarida (http://www.laguarida.com/en/) was an experience, so much so that we returned on our final night.

La Guarida is well known not just for its food. It’s claim to fame began as the movie set for the film Fresa y Chocolate.  It is now rightfully praised as one of the best restaurants in Habana, and for good reason.  As a diner (and a tourist) you are exposed to daily Cuban life as you walk up the marble staircase housed in a traditional Cuban architecture.  As I begin my way up the staircase I’m mystified by what appears level after level: washing lines stretching over hallways and corridors, rows of flats of single, double and family accommodation and stray cats!  I keep at the stairs and finally as I reach the top the entrance to La Guarida is so close its confronting.

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Once seated I’m comforted by the quirky Cuban decorations, the candles and the statues… and then begins the food. This is good Cuban food. My only regret is not taking enough pictures.

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My meal started with a herb gnocchi.  Followed by lobster and a chocolate mousse cake.

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Although I don’t look so happy here, I assure you it’s because I was so full but knew I couldn’t waste that wonderful dessert!

On our second trip, we were seated on the balcony which was such a lovely way to dine.  This time I enjoyed a fish stew, the fresh sea taste was sublime and intoxicating.

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If in Habana, do visit La Guarida.  They take reservations, and in fact it is best to book in advance.  The service is friendly, the wine is particularly good (by Cuban standards, that is) and the food will have you wondering how they get such amazing produce in the middle of Habana. I’d love to hear about your adventures at La Guarida and of Cuba in general.

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