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Cubana (Bar, Restaurant)

Picture of Cubana in Waterloo, London

48 Lower Marsh, Waterloo, London, SE1 7RG
Cuisine: Cuban
Tel: 020 7928 8778 | Email to Cubana | Transport: Waterloo | Write review

Cubana Review

Cubana is featured in these Guides:

A corner location near to the rear exit of Waterloo Station is a secret hideaway for the local business people, who want to steer clear of the gastro-pub creations of the big brewers. A statue of the Virgin Mary, images of Castro and plenty of stylish, but unsophisticated theming bring a real taste of Cuba to the Southeast.

A restaurant area on the ground level winds down a staircase to the bar area, where the cocktail menu is predictably biassed towards Central American concoctions. Food is good and inexpensive, though the music can become a little obtrusive at times.

[words] london barguide

Customer Reviews for Cubana

Average (based on 18 votes): 18 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of Cubana.

“Terrible bar. A fiver to get in and then once inside, realise it's practically a sauna. So so hot. The weird layout is probably the only thing it has going for it. The music is naff chart stuff with the odd 'latin' sounding tune thrown in to keep it on theme. Nice girls though.”
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The Restaurant Hunter, London (8 years 8 months 20 days ago)

“Food Average...wait staff...POOR...waitress tried to convience us that 12.5% was for the restaurant”
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Mrs Patsy, Sydney (9 years 9 months ago)

“Very nice and inexpensive food - which is unusual these days, but a blessing in tough times! We all ate the special menu for just over £12 with service (it's extra)- three courses. It all seemed very fresh and we enjoyed the drinks - the beer selection is decent with Urquell and a Spanish ale called Galicia Estrella, which I'd never had before. There was a Cuban beer too and, of course, Mojitos...”
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john surtees, london (9 years 10 months 28 days ago)

Show all user reviews for Cubana

“A great Spanish beer I had never had before, Estrella Galicia, two top Mojitos at Happy Hour for under £7 and some lovely tapas - chorizo croquettes and tempura prawns - inexpensive and good ambience, but gets busy”
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Mr jim litton, london (10 years 2 months 6 days ago)

“Very good home-style cooking - we had tapas starters including empanadas, ceviche and chorizo croquettes, then marinated sirloin steaks (melt in the mouth), cuban chicken and prawns creole - with cocktails (very fresh tasting - the pina colada was the only one i've had which was made with fresh pineapple) - it came to just over £20 a head. Not the flashiest venue, but pretty nice and a bit different”
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Mr rob hayward, LONDON (10 years 3 months 15 days ago)

“Went with friends at the weekend mainly for the cocktails and live music, but we ate too and had a decent, fresh and inexpensive meal - tuna cake starters were good, but the sirloin and sesame tuna mains we had were great. Ropa Vieja Cuban hash was a bit heavy, but solid food - service was good, tho' the place was busy, the cocktails were the best i've had and it didn't cost an arm and a leg. Really good night out.”
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Mrs john derrick, london (10 years 3 months 24 days ago)

“Went down to London for the day and was taken by a friend to Cubana. Great atmosphere - live enetertainment and the mojitos really hit the spot. Will definitely be back next time I'm down in the big smoke”
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Jamie Fletcher, Chesterfield (11 years 8 months 17 days ago)

“Can't really comment on the atmosphere as we went at lunctime, and I'm sure Cubana is very different at night, something I will have to try. Pollo chicken was very tasty and served by friendly staff, but what stood out for me was the amazing smoothie I had. Forget the bottled stuff - this was just divine. Never had a fresh passion fruit one before - and mmm mmm was it good. Decor not necessarily to my liking - what with the machine guns - but hey - the food was great. Suspect it is alot busier of an evening, so booking may be advisable, though I didn't need to at lunchtime.”
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Julie Hurst, London (11 years 8 months 23 days ago)

“I'm not sure what led to the comments below, as I found the experience at Cubana absolutely superb . It's the type of restaurant you go to with a group of friends to have a laugh, enjoy some live music and down some great cocktails. Mojitos were two for £6.95 during happy hour - so you certainly can't complain about being overcharged, and if you want some fresh tasty food then you should give it a try. My friend had the sirloin steak with the potato rosti which he thoroughly enjoyed (well nothing left on the plate) and I went for the pollo criollo chicken which was very very tasty. A fine night out which I would certainly recommend!”
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Paul Dale, London (11 years 8 months 27 days ago)

“I have to say I should have read these other reviews before booking our work party at Bar Cubana, as basically all the same problems happened to us. It was one of the worst nights I have had out in London, and this was due to a combination of the table booking being incorrect (even after booking it by email weeks before and calling the night before to confirm), there not being enough room for all our party, the inactivity of the "apparent" manager to solve the problem, the extreme lack of courtesy throughout the meal, the incorrect amount of food being served and the inability of any of the staff to apologise or cope with customer complaints in anyway. The food was ok, however, not great. All in all the night was a huge disappointment and I would no way recommend this place to anyone.”
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Vicki Crook, Kew (13 years 1 months 16 days ago)

“Unfortunately this restaurant has to rank as the worst I have ever been to. My friends and I had booked a table, planning a fun evening in what we thought was one of the funkiest looking restaurants around, as it happened a night that started badly, ended in disbelief. Upon arriving, our booking was lost (despite having phoned up only two days before and booking). The waitress was not apologetic but we put this down to her just being in a bad mood. We had specifically booked our table for 6pm so we could take full advantage of the happy hour. Having ordered several jugs of happy hour cocktails we were looking forward to some good food in a relaxed atmosphere. Annoyingly only half of our drinks showed up so 30 minutes later we went to gently remind them, they eventually came. The food came and was pretty tasty. All seemed ok until the bill came: When it arrived - we noticed that two of the happy-hour cocktails we had ordered were charged at full price (£32 vs £17) - when the waitress came over we mentioned this to her, she went to the bar and then came back and said that we had ordered them after happy hour so couldn’t get the discount - it is now that we reminded her that it was the restaurant who had not written down are order originally - she went away again and then came back claiming that "it is on the computer...I cant change the computer" - this in itself was plainly insulting to us and she was not remotely apologetic. ”
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Josh G, London (13 years 3 months 14 days ago)

“The evening started bad because the table that my friend had booked was not vacant when we arrived. We sat elsewhere until our table of choice became available in a part of the restaurant that had more light. We had 2 portions of chicken & chorizo skewers and you get two skewers per portion, one portion of prawn skewers, 2 bowls of fried plaintains and an empanada each. Everything tasted great. My one gripe is that the food is a bit on the pricey side. One empanada costs £4.95 each. They are nothing more than a very substandard Jamaican pattie but where a pattie is more spicey, larger and with flaky pastry their empanda was a bit greasy. We were starving so we wolfed it down and as I said it tasted good. The food bill alone came to £68.00. Too expensive especailly when we didn't have desserts. I have, however had better sangria with more alcohol and fruit, theirs was very watery. I though it was me until later my friends ordered mojito's that tasted like cold mint tea, there was hardly any alcohol in it. My other major gripe was how quick the table staff were in removing plates and glasses. We were still eating when they started to clear away plates and my friend was nursing a cocktail when one of the staff snatched her glass from right under her. This is the height of bad manners I don't understand what their problem was because it was late but nowhere near closing time and it's not like they needed the table. It is very evident that Cubana is taking”
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B Carr, London (14 years 21 days ago)

“I went here after reading the fluid's reviews, I had a really good time. The food was great (I had pollo criollo), and my friend highly rated the steak too, in fact I think the previous food criticism is harsh, starters were £2/3.95 and mains about £9.95, but you can get cubalibre by the jug. The live band started about 11pm and the tables were cleared away. The best thing is the guns on the walls, its a bit cheesely cuban-themed in the same way I've seen a 'Sherlock Holmes' pub in other countries! Its not a place for hard-core show-off salsa dancers because its too crowded, but there was a reasonable amount. There was a mix of english and latins (I found enough people to speak spanish to), but mostly english, and too many guys! Overall, I rate the place quite highly, its not too large either, definitely a good night out.”
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Christian, London (14 years 4 days ago)

“Really good place with excellent beers (Budvar, Super Bok - OK, so they've got Sol too, but no-one's perfect) and the best Mojitos and smoothies I have had. I have eaten a couple of time with friends and had very good food for the money - a char-grilled free-range chicken/chorizo/guava skewer comes to mind as does an excellent marinated sirloin steal. Late opening, live Salsa music, friendly crowd all make Cubana, though if you want a quiet meal stick to Mondays.”
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terry presley, london (14 years 6 months 11 days ago)

“Very cool place - it does get busy, but generally the staff are good - above all, the best tropical cocktails in London. We had a fresh guava/strawberry daiquiri and Mojitos which, for what they charge, were fantastic value and way above the cocktails sold elsewhere for twice the price. Food is good, rather than great - interesting Latin flavours but again, fine value. The live late night Salsa is a bonus - don't go to Cubana for ultra-slick, glitzy service and 5 star prices - do go for freshness, originality and value.”
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sandra taylor, london (15 years 8 months 1 days ago)

“I was very disappointed by Cubana. The staff have little or no concept of customer service and appear far more willing to serve the off-duty staff drinks than the customers who have been patiently waiting. When we went to Cubana we had a nearly-new pitcher taken away and binned without a word. Upon querying this we were met with rudeness and blank stares. It is fair to say I will never be going back to Cubana.”
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Dave Cross, London (15 years 8 months 19 days ago)

“Went last Thursday and had so much fun I thought I would log on and tell everyone. My girlfriends and I went on our way to another bar to meet some friends but in the end we told them to come to Cubana and finish the night with us. Didn’t eat but the food that I saw looked good. The atmosphere was fantastic and at about 12:30 I found myself dancing at the bar with some tall, sexy Spanish guy. The staff were really kind about having to throw me out because the place was closing. Going back.”
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Milton Haynes, London (17 years 3 months 24 days ago)

“Cubana is a wonderfully atmospheric place that has become my "Local" since I moved to Waterloo. The friendly bar staff dressed in guerilla costumes make Mojitos with lashings of rum that are out of this world. Frequented by a pretty nice, largely international crowd. Live salsa music on Friday and Saturdays and the happy hour has to be one of the best in London with two jugs of well-mixed mojitos going for about £6. Seriously student-friendly!”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Catherine, London (17 years 3 months 28 days ago)

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