Jorge Castillo: The owner, Luis Montesdeoca, is the son of the original owner of what is probably LA's most famous Cuban restaurant: Versailles. So you know that this is a restaurant with Cuban roots, not some trendy Latin-Mexican-Caribbean-Sushi experiment. (And there are plenty of those in LA!)
Glenn Lindgren: Havana Mania has great atmosphere on weekends with a small group of loyal customers making up the core. They are also one of the cleanest Cuban restaurants we've seen on our trips to the West coast. And yes, they serve some great Cuban food.
Raúl Musibay: That is definitely a great night to go. There is nothing like the taste of a whole pig roasted Cuban style. The skin of the pig and the layer of fat retain all of the natural juices in the meat. The pork at Havana Mania is infused with classic mojo flavor: garlic, onions, and sour orange.
Jorge Castillo: We have to believe Havana Mania makes their own mojo here and the quality shows. For only $9.95 you get a huge serving of slow-roasted pork. Yum!
Glenn Lindgren: Being so close to the ocean, they have to have several fresh fish dishes on the menu. Havana Mania has one of my favorites pargo entero frito, or whole fried snapper. The fish is first marinated and then fried. It's crispy on the outside, tender and juicy inside. The Paella Havana Mania is worth the preparation time, about 45 minutes plenty of time to enjoy a Havana Mania Punch or a glass of wine.
Jorge Castillo: They also make a very nice seafood pasta with shrimp, scallops, and calamari. They do a nice shrimp dish with five good-size shrimp in a mild green chile salsa verde with hints of garlic and cilantro. It's served on a bed of fluffy white rice.
Raúl Musibay: Everything they do at Havana Mania they do well. You won't go wrong with palomilla a la criolla (beef steak), boliche asado (Cuban pot roast) or pollo saltado (chicken).
Glenn Lindgren: They have something that we've never had before: Lechón con Ensalada pig salad. It's made with tender pieces of roast pork tossed with lettuce and onions in a basic Cuban style. You get your protein and your greens in a single dish.
Jorge Castillo: If you just can't make up your mind, they serve two great sampler meals. The Classic includes roast pork, sautéed chicken, moros, maduros, a croqueta de jamón and yuca in garlic sauce, the works for just $12.95 per person.
Glenn Lindgren: The Havana Grande Platter includes lechón, bistec, filete de pollo, and garlic shrimp all done on the grill. You also get frijoles negros, arroz blanco, and maduros for $23.95 for two hungry people.
Raúl Musibay: Many people don't know about the influence Chinese have on Cuban cooking. Havana Mania makes a very nice fried rice, with pork, chicken, shrimp, green onions, and bean sprouts.
Glenn Lindgren: Spending the day at the beach in the South Bay area? End your day with a great dinner at Havana Mania. They are easy to find in the Drug Emporium shopping center just off the 405 Freeway exit.
HOURS: Monday through Thursday 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. | Friday 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. | Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. | Sunday 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
PRICES: Very reasonable. Most dinner items priced between $13.00 and $18.00.
3615 Inglewood Ave
Redondo Beach, CA 90728