Open now for 22 years (!), Habana in Costa Mesa just got a new executive chef in Alex Moreno, who’s bringing on bold seasonal Cuban cuisine. Chef Moreno comes to Habana from Border Grill in Los Angeles, and has worked as chef de cuisine at Tres Agaves in San Francisco. Soon he’ll be leading the kitchen at Habana’s new location at the Irvine Spectrum but until then, get a taste of his Havana flavors at the mothership’s new Cuban-inspired brunch.
The new menu makes you rethink buffets with its lavish spread of fresh seafood, succulent slow roasted lechon, ropa vieja, and classic paella Cubana with seafood in every bite (only available on special occasions).
Start strategically building your plate with a made-to-order omelette, bocaditos (stuffed crescent-shaped breakfast pastry rolls) and tasty sides like potato plantain gratin and Iberico chorizo. Enjoy bites of nutty manchego cheese and a curated selection of cured meats like jamon serrano, spicy Spanish chorizo and salami served with sweet quince paste. Make sure to leave room for an assortment of confections to balance out the savory — you can’t go wrong with plantain maduros and waffles.
Many of the offerings play as a great representation of the soulful dishes Chef Moreno will offer at the new Habana. For now, relish the brunch lyfe in Habana’s refreshing patio with guajira tunes of Guillermo Portables. And raise a mojito to Habana continuing to up its game after all these years…
Habana, 2930 Bristol St., Costa Mesa, (714) 556-0176; habanacostamesa.com