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Restaurants & Bars 3

La Taza de Cafe - Oakland

DevoSha | Apr 29, 2005 05:05 PM

I went there for the first time last night with my friend. The place was packed and we had to wait at the bar for a table. While sipping sangria, we started chatting with the "bartender" about all things cuban--bread, coffee, food, life. It turns out he was the owner, Daniel, and probably one of the nicest and most laid back guys you'll meet. He made everyone feel at home at the small bar, and remembered names and faces of patrons who had only been there once before....

Dinner was pure delight. We greedily devoured the El Cubano cuban sandwich with layers of pork and ham, melted swiss cheese, and a hint of mustard and pickles. Everyone was eating the chops de cordero and they did not disappoint. They were wonderfully tender. The puerco viejo empanadas rounded out our meal.

The flan did not impress us, but the tazita (cuban espresso shot) is not to be missed. It was by far the best espresso I have ever had. Very smooth, no bitterness. You can only buy the beans there--and I am already making plans to return just to pick up more!

The restaurant is very intimate and has a very warm atmosphere. They had a large party last night, but were still able to accomodate lots of walk-ins. There was also a band playing cuban jazz and entertained us all night. I loved it because I could still carry on a conversation over the music, or just eat, drink, and sit and listen to them play.

It's a gem in the east bay.

Link: http://www.latazadecafe.com

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