Jazz Cafe
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

4.0
169 reviews
Excellent
59
Very good
56
Average
27
Poor
11
Terrible
16

Walle
Toronto, Canada14 contributions
Feb 2020
Oh boy, we came here on the day Habana excursion and it was better than what we were having for sure, bathroom staff wasn’t pleasant and neither were some of the waitstaff, asked for water and they brought a warm bottle, wanting to charge 1.50 CUC ... declined. Not a peep of Jazz was playing but 80s grooves. I went with 2 children but only one child seat available.
Written February 22, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

london86
London, UK4,432 contributions
My parents and I visited the Jazz Cafe on our recent trip to Cuba (August 2010), and really enjoyed it.

The location perhaps isn't the best (a bit in the middle of nowhere), but we got a taxi there and easily got one from outside when we left, so it was a non-issue. My dad did get approached by a lady looking to 'do business' shall we say, so men, please be aware of this!

You pay 10CUC entrance to the Jazz Cafe, but this can be spent on food and drinks. The bar looked very upmarket (nice decor, smart waiters etc) so I thought the food and drink would be expensive; I was very wrong. Food started at just 1.5CUC for a burger (looked very tasty), with a large selection of other dishes very reasonably priced (I think most were under the 5CUC mark). Drinks started at 1CUC for a soft drink or water, 1.5CUC for an international beer like Corona, and 1.95CUC for cocktails: very cheap.

The service was outstanding. We tipped, and I didn't see anyone else do this: the waiters/waitresses seemed genuinely surprised and pleased. They were extremely attentive, standing in positions where people could easily make eye contact if they needed anything (sometimes in places where drinks are in effect prepaid this doesn't happen), and constantly cleaning/clearing tables etc; they were also friendly and professional. By far the best service I've had in 2 visits to Cuba.

The band we saw were excellent: very modern, but extremely accomplished musicians, and people could get up and dance which was nice.

Be aware that the AC is cranked up high; maybe so people don't drink as much, who knows. I'd suggest ladies wear long trousers or a maxi dress and cardigan, and men wear long trousers and a jumper or light jacket.

All in all it was brilliant value for money: I'd have paid the 10CUC for the band alone, so the fact this could be spent on very reasonably priced food and drinks made was great.

If anyone would like to know anything else, please ask.
Written September 5, 2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

LarryTheRadioGuy
Victoria, Canada652 contributions
Dec 2014 • Friends
Went their three times in December. First time: just to eat. My friend's half chicken looked grea (he said it was). My spaghetti w. shrimps? Shrimps (small ones) were tasty. But the spaghetti sauce tasted suspiciously like Ketchup. Mojito was terrific and low price.

The next evening went again......this time to hear the music as well. I really wanted their special shrimp dish but were out of shrimp, so I had a low-priced filet mignon. Well-done, unfortunately, and rather tough….but tasted fine. Also had something called an “Indian salad”. Had grilled chicken. Pretty good. Stayed to hear two performers and their groups. One was Reyner Marino (flamenco fusion), and the other was Roberto Conseca (event though the poster said it was supposed to be Lazaro Valdes). Both were terrific. Impressed with the acoustics of the place. The whole evening w. full dinners and a couple rounds of drinks only cost us $20 (CUC’s--each CUC is equivalent to a U.S. dollar) each.

Went once more about 10 days later, and saw a group led by percussionist Oscar Valdes. It was good music, but after it was finished, the jacked the volume of the canned music to a level that far supersedes the capacity of the sound system and the ability of the room’s acoustics to handle it, creating an ear-splitting scenario.

Food wise, I ordered that shrimp dish I had been longing for since last being ther…..3 different ways to cook shrimp, breaded, garlic, and with a nice cheese sauce. $12, and it was delicious! The other meals ranged from good to not-so good. The half chicken looked great.....but I found it rather dry when I tasted it.

A great place to go for jazz.......good acoustics, variable food, nice atmosphere, and some of the best musicians Cuba has to offer. The $10 cover isn't really a cover, but a minimum food and drink charge. One warning: the washrooms are terrible. Especially for women as there is no toilet seat, and anything one does sit on is quite dirty.
Written December 31, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Maiha
Montreal, Canada20 contributions
May 2015 • Couples
Music was fantastic. The staff was rude. Food and service was terrible. The AC is freezing, the room is very big and the atmosphere is quite cold when there are few people. In a nutshell, not friendly, and above all not clean. If you go for the music which was great (even if it was way too loud), stick to the beer from the bottle. Do not eat here. Food is overpriced and disgusting. I asked for “fish”...I thought it was a rat or something, but I strongly doubt that it was fish, as I never ever had fish tasting this weird and this chewy. I asked to the waiter which kind of fish was it, and I’ve been told in a rude way that it was a special Cuban kind of...still I’m convinced that it wasn’t fish. After all the amazing places we ate in Havana this was the worst ever. Disgusting! There is just one open washroom for ladies and gents. A lady standing in front of the missing door, will tell you whether you can go or not...and of course the lady’s “service” is not for free. Moreover the promised $10 charge that included food or drinks up to that amount. So we paid the cover charge (20$ as we were two), then at the end of the evening we were hit with the cost of our food and drinks, essentially doubling the bill. I tried to say something, but the waiter was very unhappy with my complaint, he told me that it was fine like that and he let me clearly feel I just had to pay and shut up.
Written May 28, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Dr B
Wellington, New Zealand3 contributions
Oct 2012 • Couples
Overpriced and disappointing...Cubanos encourage tourists to go here to keep you away from the great venues which they flock too. Dishonest Taxi drivers steal from tourists here by giving you change in pesos which are 1/24th the value of the $CUC. When you study the change the taxi driver will dive in to distract you by shaking your hand....
Written December 18, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

AlperErtubey
Istanbul16 contributions
Oct 2014 • Couples
I can't believe that people go to a Jazz Cafe and complain about chicken. I have been here twice. You pay a small entrance fee and you can have 4 mojitos with that fee. Second time I have great sea food too. But hey, this is not what you go to a cazz club for. If you want chicken go somewhere else. You can enjoy some of the best jazz performances in this place. I and my wife have listened to Roberto Fonseca here with our jaws falling to the table.
Written January 22, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

SaranMatt
Manchester23 contributions
Keep a million miles away from this place, we visited as we were staying at the cohiba opposite. Very cheap drinks I admit but quite easily the worst food I have ever been served one taste and we walked straight out, the benefit being we were over changed so ended up leaving no worse off!!
Go to the Havana cafe under the melia cohiba instead
Written December 23, 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Brendan D
Sao Paulo108 contributions
The entrance to this bar is through what seems to be an empty shopping mall, which is a bit strange to say the least. There is a $10 CUC minimum spend per person which I thought was no problem. A few hours later, after having 5 Mojitos & a huge pasta dish while my wife had a pasta dish as well & 2 margaritas, I was amazed when we asked for the bill & were told that there wasn't one as we'd only spent $20 CUC's! Pasta CUC $2.95, Mojito CUC $1.95. Awesome value!
It pays to check what time the bands are on as we arrived about 9pm to find the band packing up. Panicking a little, we asked & were told there was another band later(phew!) that started about 11pm. So we settled in, had a few drinks & a meal & enjoyed the venue. It's mostly tourists but the place is pretty good. it has a view of the Malecon which is apparently great at sunset although we missed that. The food was really good & the band was fantastic. There are no smoking signs in the venue & as I wanted to really get into the Cuban rhythm I asked where I could go to have a cigar. The waitress brought me an ashtray & said 'right here'. When I pointed out the No Smoking signs she just said 'Oh don' t worry about those!". Gotta love Cuba!
Written January 9, 2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

cubaninlondon
London, UK1 contribution
May 2014 • Family
This is a terrible place full of unprofessional staff, bad food, bad service....and bad everything. I´m Cuban, I use to go there during summer time for the last 8 years. In the past, the Jazz Cafe was a nice place to go, now... please do yourself a favor and do not go there. The staff is rude, the cocktails are really disgusting (I ordered a sangria and it had a fly inside! , the put some colorant to make the cocktails look better, the piña colada is awful) and the food is not tasty at all. My steak was not properly cooked and it has blood in some areas...yuk!
Written May 18, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Yosemite195
Lincolnshire, UK34 contributions
May 2013 • Family
This venue is in a modern building above a shopping mall. Although the doorman and all the waiters are smartly dressed in black suits, it has a very relaxed atmosphere. The cost is 10CUC per person to enter. For that price, you can have as much drink or food as you like, and you only pay for anything over 10CUC. Mojitos were 2.50, beer 1.50 and juice 1.50 for example.
We visited this club on a Friday when Cesar Lopez and his band were performing. They were totally awesome, every member of the band an outstanding musician in his own right. It was a magnificent show. The only trouble was that the band did not start until after 11.30pm, which we found a little late after a full day around Havana!
Written May 11, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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