I love independents. They’re important – they showcase local produce, they are creative, inspiring, and let’s face it, its where a lot of chains start. First one, then a second then, another in another city, and on and on. There are those who keep it local and still manage to have a chain of venues that have their own character and space, and menu.
And sometimes it’s a Sunday morning, you didn’t want to go to the gym, but you made yourself go, and now you’re exhausted, but you promised your sister you’d meet her for lunch, and then go with her while she gets a body part pierced, but neither of you thought to book anything, and all the indies are either too far away (no really), or full of people already and you’re hungry and oh look, Revolucion De Cuba might have space for us?
They did. And I must admit, I’ve long been a fan of De Cuba. Bad day? Two for one cocktails after work (two Margaritas please, salt rim). Get together with work or your mates? Does the job, and there’s something for everyone. Been to a bit of a do, and somehow failed to manage to catch even the smallest of canapes coming round? Sorted.
I even have a favourite dish on the menu.
This Sunday, as mentioned, my sister wanted to meet me for lunch. I was tired – lack of sleep, heavy gym session, I needed something a little comforting, something easy. And as we walked away from the Great Northern, De Cuba came to our rescue.
The best bit about Sundays in here is that the tapas is 2 for 1 – as are the cocktails. Normally I’d opt for my favourite main (the paella) but this offer meant we could have a little bit of everything. And we did.
My only grumble is that they add sour cream to the guacamole, and I’m not a fan. I love guacamole. I don’t like sour cream – the acidity kills off the green fresh flavour of the guac. I want the freshness to shine through. This was like the stuff I get in the supermarket and am unbearably saddened by.
Luckily everything else made up for it a bit. The calamari was crisp, and tasty, not a rubber ring in sight. The jerk fried chicken was a thing of beauty, crispy, juicy and tender, thankfully both of us have learned how to (reluctantly) share as grown ups, or I’d have just quietly eaten all of it. The chicken skewers were smoky and gently spicy.
Perhaps the most surprising was the halloumi tacos – fresh, spicy, sweet and fruity, with that little squeak of the cheese. They surpassed the pulled pork tacos, and next time we’ll just order two lots of those, so again, we don’t have to share like grown ups.
I’ve always had a bit of a soft spot for De Cuba, and I’m pleased to see things haven’t changed. Service, food, and drinks, it just does it well. And I’ll no doubt be back again soon.
All food and drink was purchased by ourselves.