Located in Downtown Detroit, Vicente’s Cuban Cuisine is a colorful change to your average restaurant. We sat on the patio because we just didn’t feel like waiting 45 minutes to sit inside a packed dining room. Plus, the patio was cool, breezy, and allowed for people watching and conversation. See how Vicente’s ranked:
Atmosphere: 4 out of 5 bites
Price: 3.5 out of 5 bites
Quality/Taste: 4 out of 5 bites
Service: 4 out of 5 bites
Presentation/Style: 3.5 out of 5 bites
Sangria: A delicious blend of red wine, fresh fruit, and brandy. I’m sure there was some other amazing ingredients added that made this sangria the best I’ve ever had. I could taste a hint of cinnamon, but it was very subtle. I like that the taste of strong alcohol didn’t slap you in the face when you took a drink. The pitcher was served filled with just sangria, not watered down with ice, for $35 – what a steal for 7 glasses.
Bread: Fresh and soft with a chewy crust. The dip tasted like red pepper butter spread and was excellent. From there, we decided to order a bunch of tapas (appetizers) and share, and it worked out really well.
Lobster bisque: Rich, creamy, and smooth. You could really taste the lobster, which was almost too much for me. I definitely couldn’t eat a whole cup.
Tostones: Double fried green plantains, topped with light garlic, were crispy with a subtle garlic flavor. The only thing I didn’t like was that these were a little dry.
Papas rellenas: Delicious seasoned mashed potatoes that were generously stuffed with flavorful ground beef, breaded, rolled into a ball, and lightly fried. I wasn’t as impressed with these as I thought I’d be. I heard very good things and think maybe my expectations were high because of that. They were still delicious and unique – crispy, light, and airy outside with a creamy mashed potato inside.
Croquetas preparadas: Homemade ham and chicken croquettes with a creamy filling almost like a pâté, but still had some texture. The spicy tomato and cilantro dipping sauce was a nice, cool compliment.
Filetillo de lomo: Tender strips of beef sautéed with garlic, onions, mushrooms, and peppers in a Rioja wine sauce. The dish was rich, meaty, with the perfect amount of salt.
I was really impressed with Vicente’s. The service was great and the food was delicious. It was a little pricey, between $18 and $30 for dinner dishes, but the tapas were reasonably priced. Even though I hate waiting to be seated, I know when a restaurant has a wait, it’s a good thing. Pay them a visit on a weekend, as Vicente’s offers salsa dancing and lessons. It’s a great, fun place with a lot of culture. I really enjoyed myself and it seemed as though everyone else did as well.
A version of this review was originally published on The Bite Tonight.