Havana Grill’s tamale en casuela con puerco is a sensation

click to enlarge MATTHEW SCHNIPER

  • Matthew Schniper

Offering takeout and delivery

Just before the new year, Havana Grill relocated to the former Brayla Wedding and Events center, which had been hosting the 719 Hump Day Food Truck Rally for many months (it’s since moved to Copperhead Road). In doing so, they quadrupled their capacity and quickly became a late-night club spot too. Just before the hiatus on on-site food service, we visited to check out the expansive dining room, adjacent to both a dance floor and arcade area.

We of course took advantage of the chance to suck down a Cortadito and Cafe Cubano, dark with Café Bustelo roastiness and sweet in the case of the latter drink. And we tried a new menu item, tamal en cazuela con puerco. It’s essentially a Cuban casserole version of a tamale, making a vibrant, thick and slightly granular cornmeal stew studded with tender pork hunks and seasoned most notably with sazón spice blend (coriander, garlic, cumin and annatto). It’s excellent, as are sides of black beans and rice, plantains and yuca hervida (boiled yuca) cooked with sharp white onions and covered in tangy mojo sauce.

Havana Grill

2165 Academy Place

Academy (South)

Colorado Springs, CO