Long over due, I realize I haven't made a new post about my food adventures lately . . .I apologize. I have been busy with some other stuff lately. But I want to especially talk about this place - Asia de Cuba.
In the spirit of Dine LA, we decided Asia de Cuba would be the place to go. Right when we sat down, one of my friends humorously chimed in . . ."I need menus, appetizers, and an alcoholic drink, now!" It was kinda funny coming from a girl.
Luckily, in my humble opinion, we got the set menu offered this week which made thing easier. My preference, when I visit a new place is to try their specialty or highly recommended dish. With the set menu, there were 3 options for appetizers, entrees, and desserts - with our group of 6, we had the right portions for everyone.
Here is what we ordered . . .
Tunapica - Tuna Tartare Picadillo Style with Spanish Olives, Black Currants, Almonds and Coconut with Soy-Lime Vinairette and Wonton Crisps
Braised Beef Spring Roll - Cuban Black Bean Papaya Salsa, Port Wine Reduction
Lemongrass Skewered Chicken - Coconut Thai Chili Marinade, Grilled Pineapple and Lychee
My comments about the appetizers are ok . . . but better than a regular "meh" I did like the braised beef spring rolls. I thought there were tasty for beef. (yes, I know I shouldn't eat beef - but it was good). The chicken skewers were unappealing - but not bad and not dry. I guess things stand out more if they are exceptional and very bad. Again, the chicken was decent but nothing to write home about. I don't remember the tunapica at all. But after looking at the pictures, I remember it was light and airy since it was on a crisp.
Miso Cured Alaskan Butterfish - Cuban and Black Bean Edamame Salad, Tempura Shisito Peppers
Grilled Strip Steak - Gingered Chickpea Fies and Calabaza Melon Slaw, Citrus Ginger Soy
Cuban BBQ Chicken - Thai Coconut Sticky Rice and Avocado Cilantro Fruit Salsa. Tamarind Sauce
I was looking forward to the chicken. Luckily I wasn't too disappointed. The chicken, dark meat thank goodness, with the skin was the best entree. The Grill strip steak, was dry and tough. Please don't order it. The butterfish was good as well, though I think the portion was too small.
Cuban Opera - Rich Chocolate Cake Layered with Milk Chocolate, Buttercream and Coffee Mousse with Coffee-Brittle, Ice Cream, Chocolate and Caramel Sauces
Mexican Donuts - Seet Brioche Donuts rolled in Cinnamon Sugar and filled with Toffee Sauce.
Sorbet of the Day - House Made Tropical Sorbet served with Seasonal Fresh Fruit Chopsticks and Chilie Fruit Sauce
Now for the highlight of the meal - the Mexican Donut. I don't know it is, but when I am at a high brow restaurant, I like to order the dishes that are homestyled comfort foods. For instance, I like to order mac'n cheese or hamburgers at a Beverly Hills restaurant - such as Maestro's. So, at Asia de Cuba, the Mexican Donut stood out on the menu. I knew we had to get it. When it arrived in the bowl, there were seven pieces for 6 of us. Hmm. . . inside, I knew we were all thinking who would get the last one. I know I didn't want to look directly at it, as did my friends at the table. But I knew whoever piped up first, wanted it more. And thus, my boisterous friend did . . .
Funny thing, just prior, this same friend replied from a question from her husband . . .
"Would you like to share this dessert?", he instinctively quipped.
"Uh, no, why do we have to share. I want my own!", she replied.
Anyways. . . this night brought back some nice memories of the place, since I hadn't been here in years. But I think if taking everything into consideration - traffic, locale, price points, and food . . . unfortunately, Asia de Cuba doesn't get high marks this time.
This was the sorbet of the day. Very nice presentation. But I don't care too much about presentation.
I love how they put mexican donuts in a bamboo dimsum steamer.
Chocolate cake . . . actually was pretty good.
Run away from this. . . run far and fast. Grilled strip steak was quite dry and uneventful.
I apologize for the lack of quality images. But I thought I'd least show you what we had.
The Butterfish entree. A bit small to share. All the other entrees were generous in the portion.
The Cuban Chicken. I liked the sticky coconut rice. But I don't think it went together well.
I prefer the outdoor seating, than the indoor one. Though it was a bit nippy, the outdoor ambiance is good for groups.
The beef spring rolls are underrated. I know my friends didn't think it was that special, but I liked it.
The tunapica - I have no idea what this means. I guess it is sort of a tuna tartar or something.
The chicken appetizer - lemongrass chicken, actually not bad, but not great.
This is one other thing we order, in addition, to the set menu. This is the calamari salad. My friend's favorite.
With drinks, tip, and everything, it came out to be about 80 bucks a person.
1 pigs, $$$
Asia De Cuba
8440 W Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069-1912