Pasadena >Food & Dining > Brenart Cafe Gallery
53 E Union St, Pasadena, CA | Directions 9110334.146856 -118.149322
Neighborhoods: West Central
Old Town's casual destination for authentic Cuban comfort food. – In Short
Snappy Cuban music fills the airy space and pictures of Havana hang on the walls. Comfortable wicker furniture anchors one side, and elegantly appointed, white-clothed tables fill the other. The menu includes made-from-scratch papas rellenas and mashed potatoes stuffed with ground beef. The hearty ajiaca--a spicy jerked-beef stew--is enough to share. The sandwich menu is highlighted by serrano ham, sharp manchego cheese and grilled onions piled on thick potato-dill bread.
Great food and service – I held my graduation party here, and the service was superb. Melissa (the owner's daughter) worked with my price range to come up with a great 3 course menu. Since the place is small, I was able to reserve the entire restaurant for my party without any extra charge - great considering it was on a saturday night. The red snapper and cuban chicken are wonderful. one of best spots for cuban food in pasadena, with the other one being Xiomara, Cafe Atlantic's sister restaurant.
Great Food & Atmosphere – This is an out of the way spot within it's higher priced more high end sister restaurant Xiomara. For my money Cafe Atlantic has a better menu and prices. The mojitos are refreshing. I have traversed most of the menu and have yet to be disappointed. The service is always prompt and friendly. Their suggestions are never off. On my last visit I enjoyed lobster empanadas, arroz frito (fried rice) a mojito and the cuban flan was the best I'd ever had. I cannot get enough of this place. I will return many times in the future.
A Great Find in Old Town Pasadena – Perhaps I've just had good luck, but I've had great experiences with this place. It's a very pleasant space in the daytime; romantic at night. The food is terrific, particularly for the price--I've had the cuban sandwich, picadillo, and tastes of other entrees, and all were delicious. They have a great wine list (thanks to Xiomara?), and the cafe con leche is addictive. It's one of the few places I've found in the entire LA area which are worthy of repeat visits--particularly without breaking the bank.
Nice brunch place – We dined here for brunch on a Sunday morning and it was fantastic. It wasn't very crowded and we were pleased at our service. We were able to park right outside and our food came promptly and was very good. The portions are pretty large and had a great flavor. Seems like the other reviews were more at lunch/dinner time but we'll definitely be returning for an easy Sunday brunch soon!
Slow service that's worth the wait.... – The service was incredibly slow....and we were the only ones in the restaurant!! The quality of the food tasted fresh and not of cheap or processed ingredients, however, everything was very oiled-down. I don't think it was due to the type of sandwich I ordered as the fries were saturated as well. The sandwich I ordered had hot, baked bread on the outside and the meat on the inside went from cold to lukewarm when the press hit it. I will patron this restaurant again, but will try something different on the menu.
Forever and a day – I ate lunch with my sister and father here on Saturday. We ordered two Cuban sandwiches and the shrimp entree. It took an amazing 50 minutes to get the food, which was almost long enough to let the parking meter run out. About 15 minutes before we were served, another party received 2 Cuban sandwiches. Since they arrived about 15 minutes after us, they were probably eating our lunch. When we received the Cuban sandwiches, they were warm on the outside and cold on the inside, sort of like a McDLT. It was obvious that a Cuban sandwich press was not used. My sister's shrimp entree consisted of only six shrimp and a palm-sized serving of rice.
Cute Place! – I was walking by and decided to give Cafe Atlantic a shot. I was pleasantly surprised! Their red snapper was great, and the I also enjoyed the plantains. The size is on the smaller side, but still cozy; I'd recommend a dinner reservation for the weekend. Customer service was great - our waiter was very attentive and friendly. We were promptly seated and attended to. I have no complaints about food or service, and would definitely eat here again.
Disappointed – My wife and I were very disappointed in our experience on a Sunday afternoon. The Cafe was not over crowded yet service was very poor. We asked for water, no water. We asked for bread (which everyone else was getting), no bread. My wife's Lemonade was not sour but outright bitter. My five dollar gourmet ice tea had no flavor. Their signature pork dish was way oversalted and my seafood rice dish had shrimp which can only be described as tasting as if backed in brine. Because of this experience, we will never recommend or re-try this cafe.
Underrated...! – I went for a meal by myself...and really appreciated everything about this place... the atmosphere, the super service, the excellent food, and terrific coffee!! I was surprised and how good the food was, as well as, how pleasant the experience was... without having to pay the high price like some of the fine eateries around the corner on Raymond. I can't wait to go back with my friends... have been spreading the word. Go. Try it... and bet you tell friends about it.
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