Havana 1920, a fantastic and intimate Cuban restaurant located at 548 Fifth Ave., in the Gaslamp Quarter, just south of Market Street was my breakfast stop on Monday. Owners Joe Santos and Aleko Achtipes should be proud of their endeavor!
This is a great way to start off a morning on vacation. We started with a Double Seven coffee, strong enough to send chills thru my body; I hadn’t had Cuban coffee since I was last in Tampa. On Mondays the restaurant gives you a cup on the house. The milk accompanying it is served piping hot and there just happens to be two little Cuban cookies on the saucer. This two-story restaurant has a great view of Fifth Ave. I tried another coffee, the Cubana Cortado with creamy textured milk. The menu is extensive with Empanadas filled with a variety of ingredients from picadillo, ham and cheese, cream cheese and guava, or portobello mushrooms, spinach and cheese.
Cuban black beans with peppers and onions served with plantain chips is another great choice. I had a tropical taco filled with avocado, Pico de Gallo, Chingon cheese blends with an egg and bacon on a flour tortilla. There are also burritos and Cuban toast to try. Sandwiches, of course, with the headliner being the ever-popular Cuban Sandwich with pork, ham, Swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard on Cuban bread or a tortilla sandwich with tomato, EVOO, and tortilla Espanola. If you like Yuca plant, the fries are great. They serve cheese stuffed potatoes and tortilla Espanola which is a potato Quiche and Croquets de Pollo.
Each room is totally decorated with Cuban Motif. There is the side panel from Copacabana Airlines going up the stairs, and two walls filled with every Cuban Cigar box probably ever made. Plenty of artful empty cans of Cuban coffee for your utensils. I love the place!
Take a stroll down Fifth avenue and see how the area has grown up in the last 10 years.