The Jfood had a Fair dining experience with friends at Habana in SONO this weekend. On the Jfood scale he would rate the overall experience a 5.
They arrived for their reservation and ordered drinks at the bar. Very well done and the drinkers told Jfood the drinks were very good. Table was available and they moved to the table. The middle tables are badly laid out, on a 45-degree angle (point to point with the table next to it) to squeeze as many people as possible and most of the backs of the chairs bumped those behind them. They needed to move the table themselves for Jfood to even pull his chair out to sit. Likewise this layout caused some food delivery issues since the runner leaned over the people on one side of the table to reach the other side to place their plates. The runner should have walked around and delivered the food over the shoulder versus across the table. Some training needed in this area
The food had some issues as well.
The good news first, the appetizers. Jfood ordered the scallop and shrimp cerviche. This was served in a coconut shell, contained 4-5 shrimp plus probably one scallop thinly sliced. The sauce was nicely spiced, but not too spicy. Presentation included a fried plantain strip. Jfood would give this dish a 7. Mrs. Jfood ordered the salad and her comment was that this was one of the best salads she has ever eaten, so on her guidance this would garner a 10.
Now for the entrees, and here is where the restaurant changed from very good to not so good. Jfood ordered the plantain wrapped sea bass and Mrs. Jfood opted for the skirt steak. They were told these were the two most ordered dishes. The sea bass was excellent in taste but was delivered luke warm and the surrounding sauce was cold. Another dish, the salmon, was also delivered cool to the table. Mrs. Jfood's steak was delivered raw. When they showed the server the steak, the server explained that they serve it medium-rare, Jfood mentioned it was raw, not Med-Rare, and the server argued a bit but took it away to cook more. It returned at the proper doneness, but was swimming in oil. Jfood would give a 6 to the bass and likewise a 6 on the steak on flavor and a 2 on temperature, doneness & presentation. The other couple told Jfood the salmon was not very good but the cha-cha chicken was good.
Coffee was ordered but no dessert was desired. Jfood cappuccino was good.
Service was not good to fair. Although the server started very well, (the place was 25% full at the time), it fell apart during the meal. The server had too many tables and did not come back to check in and then argued with Jfood on the steak. When the bill arrived, there was a mysterious drink included. When this was pointed out to the server she mentioned it was from the previous table that came and went. In Jfood's mind this was total BS. Including the leaning across the table mentioned above, the total service would probably get a 3.
Jfood would say this was a fair experience, and he is being generous. Food flavors were good, quality control on delivery was bad, service was fair at best, close quarters on the tables unacceptable, padded bill was a horrible way to end the evening. Not on the DNR list but major head’s up on any return visit. If this happens on round 2, then Habana would definitely be placed on the DNR. There are too many good choices with better service in this neighborhood.