Rightly named after its Spanish owner Pilar, this private restaurant, known as a paladar here, opened its doors three years ago, and is – without a doubt – one of the best Spanish restaurants in Havana. Located in the residential neighborhood of Miramar, the restaurant has an airy terrace as well as a more formal dining room. However, we would recommend the terrace to enjoy a range of diverse Spanish tapas and share a drink or two with your friends.
The restaurant’s deco is eclectic and has no shortage of funky objects including a zebra skin and some mischievous and colorful letters on the wall. While the menu covers most of the geography of Spain, it focuses mainly on northern dishes from Asturias (where the owner is from), Galicia as well as the Basque Country. During the evening we visited, one of the highlights was the pulpo a la gallega or Gaician style octopus, which is a simple and delicious Galician dish that consists of boiled octopus served with boiled potatoes and dotted paprika. This dish is best when the octopus is fresh, soft and tender as we found it to be at Casa Pilar. Another exceptional dish was the Salmorejo, a richer and denser gazpacho from the city of Cordoba sprinkled with bread crumbs and pieces of cured Spanish ham, Jamón ibérico. Finally another delicious dish to share is the breaded catch of the day with the Mediterranean alioli sauce, another northern dish that we highly recommend. Don’t miss the wine list, which as you can imagine, is dominated by wines from Spain’s famed wine regions, Rioja and Ribera del Duero. Casa Pilar combines a fun atmosphere with simple and hearty Spanish dishes, a combination that always wins.
Address: Calle 36 e/ 1ra y 3ra Miramar, Havana
Opening hours: noon till midnight
Tel: +53 7 2141002