The Café del Oriente is about as upmarket as it gets in Old Havana. Almost self-consciously grand, it is located right on Plaza de San Francisco and seems to challenge its neighbours to do better. This is a place to take someone who is easily impressed with classic poshness.
There are seats outside, but for dinner you will generally be inside, either on the ground floor or upstairs, both have their attractions, although I generally prefer downstairs. The menu is the same. Inside, this is an elegant place, which can leave some people a little cold, but it is tasteful so that can probably be forgiven. Men wearing tuxedoes provide the service. The food is good, perhaps a tad too much emphasis on fruity additions to savoury dishes but the Café’s Filet Mignon melts in the mouth. Other dishes include smoked salmon, caviar, goose liver pâté, lobster thermidor, steak au poivre, cheese plate and a glass of port. My favourite is actually to have a flaming crepe at the end of meal, which is very well done.
They often have an inclement piano player/old singer who is really fabulous in a very traditional Cuban style, which adds to the overall mood.