New additions to Milton Keynes’ array of restaurants seem to be slowly growing. Whilst everything seems a bit samey, Revolución de Cuba strikes as being a little different. A Cuban Rum bar and Cantina, Revolución de Cuba stands out from the typical restaurants in central Milton Keynes. If you aren’t quite sure what Cuban cuisine is, they describe it as ‘a melting pot, a fusion of flavours from Spain, Mexico and South America cooked up in dishes inspired by the backstreet bars of Havana.’ Sounds good, right? The Milton Keynes branch of the small chain opened late last year in the theatre district, so just a stone’s throw from Xscape and the shopping centre. Harry and I popped in for lunch on Monday to see what they had to offer.
As you would expect from a Cuban restaurant, they certainly aren’t short of cocktails! We kicked off our Monday with a Strawberry Daquiri (£7.50) and a Jamaican Me Crazy (£7.95). The Strawberry Daquiri was a fresh and fruity blend of Bacardi Carta Blanca rum with strawberry, cranberry, lime and sugar. It really reminded me of those bright red slush puppies! (minus the E-numbers and red tongue…) Harry loved his Jamaican Me Crazy, which was a tropical mix of Appleton Estate VX and Koko Kanu rums, crème de banane, lime, pineapple juice and a hit of fresh mint. The cocktail menu is pretty extensive with an impressive amount of Rums from all over the place. Cocktails are on 2-4-1 Happy Hour between 5 and 7pm, so no excuses for sampling a few …
As always, I was most excited for the food! To start, they recommend choosing three tapas dishes to share between two, which is exactly what we did. The tapas dishes were 3 for £14 or individually priced. We opted for: Iberico Ham Croquetas (£5.50), Gambas Pil Pil (£6.50) and Calamari (£5.00). Oh these were yummy. The Croquetas were an excellent choice from Harry. Inside the crispy bread crumbs, you’ll find Spanish air-dried ham which had such a gorgeous flavour. They were served with garlic aioli and fresh chopped peppers. The Gambas (Succulent king prawns tossed in butter, chilli, garlic and lime) did not disappoint at all. The prawns were juicy with a nice kick of chilli. All that was missing was a little bread to mop it up! As a calamari addict, I was well impressed with this offering. Well-cooked, crispy and the perfect compliment of garlic aioli.
After we had whet our appetite with the tapas, we were definitely hungry for more. There is just enough selection on the menu so you aren’t overwhelmed. Everything is a really interesting twist on Spanish and South-American flavours but with a bit of Rum thrown in here and there for good measure! I opted for the Chicken Enchilada (£10.00) which was a huuuuge plate of food. I definitely did not need the extra side of sweet potato fries! Inside the soft, cheese topped tortillas, was chicken marinated in lime, soy and pineapple with peppers and onions. The enchilada was served with house rice and black beans. The enchilada itself was beautiful! The chicken had a really interesting smokey flavour, with a slight tartness from the pineapple. The black beans added an extra dimension of texture to the dish. The whole dish was real comfort food and a good option if you aren’t one for Caribbean spice.
Harry decided to have the Los Pollos Cubanos (£11.00). This man-size dish was quite customisable as you could choose to have the half chicken glazed in either spicy rum sauce, sweet and sticky or chimichurri. Harry opted to have it sweet and sticky with sweet potato fries and house rice. The chicken was perfectly cooked: flavoursome and moist with a beautiful glaze that had a very subtle kick. We both loved the house rice and sweet potato fries. The rice wasn’t spicy but incredibly flavoursome and something that I’d definitely like to try and recreate at home… The sweet potato fries were well seasoned and crispy on the outside, soft in the middle.
We were both incredibly full so decided to share a dessert. (or, I had a few bites, and Harry polished it off!) We went for the Colombian Chocolate Brownie (£4.50) which was a rich, gooey chocolate brownie served with vanilla ice cream and raspberries. This is a dessert you cannot go wrong with! We were inclined to try the Sweet Nachos, but were too full of food to be adventurous – maybe next time.
Overall, our experience at Revolución de Cuba was a very postive one. The staff were warm, friendly and welcoming, with prompt and attentive service. Our waitress, Fran, was particularly lovely, making sure everything was okay and taking us through the menu. You get a lot of food for your money too – the portion sizes were very generous so you won’t be left hungry at all. The restaurant itself wasn’t buzzing when we went in, but then again, when is a restaurant going to be busy on a Monday? The atmosphere was pleasant and I can imagine it being a really great place to go for drinks on a weekend night! The Cuban touches throughout really added to the experience. I’d highly recommend taking a trip there if you find yourself in Milton Keynes.
For bookings and menus: www.revoluciondecuba.com
Have you tried Revolución de Cuba?
* This meal was complimentary. This does not affect my opinions … or my appetite! Also thank you to Harry for saving my skin and letting me photograph on his iPhone. Guess who remembered her camera, minus a memory card!? Nightmare.