Havana, a cozy Cuban bar, in the heart of Westlands, is a regular stop for most YUPs (Young Urban Professionals) that live in the environs.
Almost always full to capacity, with waiting for seating a regular occurrence (especially late on a weekend night), Havana is best known for its amazing cocktails – margaritas, daiquiris, mojitos – all made to perfection, in flavors not to be expected outside the tropics.
The Mango Margarita, a personal favorite, is one that I recommend highly, despite the hefty price tag attached to it.
The ever-increasing price of drinks at Havana has seen me frequent this bar less often, though it is still a noteworthy experience to be had on the Nairobi social scene.
A few years ago, a pitcher of Margarita sold at Ksh. 650 compared to the current price of Ksh. 850.
Unfortunately, this increase in price has also been accompanied by a decrease in the quality of the cocktails served.
When I drink at Havana nowadays, I often find myself ordering a tot of spirit, or sugar syrup to perfect my drink.
Not to be dismayed, Havana stocks a full bar, so even without ordering a cocktail, you can enjoy almost any drink of your choice.
(Have you ever been to the historical Thorn Tree Cafe in downtown Nairobi? If not, check out my review of it in Thorn Tree Cafe, Nairobi.)
I love to go to Havana on Saturday nights, when (starting a couple of months ago), a live band plays all the most hip cover tunes and has you singing along to every song.
Although, the music on these nights is a bit too loud to allow for meaningful conversation, the band at Havana adds much-needed zing to a Saturday night.
As a complete night on its own, or as a prelude to a night on the town, listening to the band at Havana puts you in a festive Saturday mood.
As a restaurant, Havana has a place on my list of top restaurants in Westlands.
Although not a typical restaurant, because of the significant bar attached to it, Havana serves food that is as good as anything the best restaurants in Nairobi have to offer.
From the quesadillas, which I often eat as a snack when I am having drinks at Havana, to the fajitas and the seafood dishes, I have never had a bad meal at Havana.
The restaurant section, located at the back of the establishment, is extremely cozy and private.
It is separate from the bar area and is a great place for long, cozy tête-à-têtes.
If you have never been to Havana and are between the ages of 21 and 40, you must visit it sometime soon.
For anyone older, Havana could be a bit intimidating because of the multitude of younger people that frequent it.
Nonetheless, if you are looking for a chic place to have drinks in the Westlands area, or want to grab a bite in a place that offers good ambiance, this is the place for you.
I hope you enjoy it when you try it. Of course, please let me know what you think when you do.
Until the next time,
Image Credit: Havana on Twitter