Our recent trip to Havana, Cuba introduced us to authentic Cuban food. It is not as spicy as some believe. It is more a reflection of all the cultures that have found their way to this island nation. You will see traces of Spanish settlers, African Slaves, their Caribbean neighbors and even some Chinese favors. Since Havana was a major port city in the 1700s & 1800s spices from all over the world make their way to its docks. Even today many of the centuries old dishes are still available. A staple at every Cuban dinner would be yellow rice & black beans, fried plantains and ham or pork or chicken.
They make excellent use of their sea food and local vegetables. Most meals make use of a sauce (so Fritos), the most famous is a Spanish version which is blend of garlic, green peppers, tomatoes, onions and different spices like oregano, cumin & cilantro. In my many trips to Italy, I have learned to love real expresso coffee. Cuba has it’d own version (café con leche). This strong coffee & milk is usually served at breakfast with buttered toast. Real coffee lovers will have trouble leaving the table if some of this is still available. To dunk this toast in the coffee is the only way to start the day.
Rum is the drink of Cuba. The Cuba Liber (Hemingway’s favor), Mojito & Daiquiri have found their way all over the world. The national brand is Havana Club and you can find it everywhere and tour its plant & museum in Havana. But, as the Mexicans will skip the salt & lemon of the Margarita for a clear shot of chilled Blue Agave tequila on the rocks or straight up—so too the Cubans prefer to by-pass the sugary cocktails and enjoy a Havana Club Anejo 7 Anoson the rocks.
The good news is that today you can bring home, to America, $100 of the good rum with a few Cuban cigars to round out your evening.
The time to see Havana is NOW, before it changes! Our company, 4 More Travel, has partnered with one of the best wholesalers with 15 years of working with Cuba. Dip your toe in this part of the Caribbean and do a weekend in Havana, Cuba. You will enjoy the food, the rum and most of all the people.
See details on a Weekend 4 Foodies in Havana.
Join Patrick Barney as he explores his love of travel & food around the world & in his home town of Las Vegas.