El Diamante

Style of food: Mexican
Cost: Moderate
Type of place: Paladar (private)
Food
Ambience
Service
Value
Best for: Rosey, the owner is charming, funny and dynamic
Worst for: Food seems unexceptional
Calle 35, #1316, esq. a 24, Nuevo Vedado
(+53)7883 - 0835
Open 24 hours
  • El Diamante (The Diamond) may be something of the diamond in the rough. We only spotted it on the way to Bollywood, which is across the way. It seems a pretty average place from the outside, a suburban three-storey house with a sign across the door on the first story. There is one dining room with space for perhaps 30 people. Simple decoration, a slightly rough finish gives the place a solid and real feels. Seems OK if you are in the neighbourhood.

    And then in comes Rosey. She parks her blue Lada outside and starts bringing the shopping in, kicking and cajoling the windows, the boot and the door of her car. We sit down to talk–when I say ‘we,’ really I mean I sat down to listen to Rosey who is as charming as the day is long! She points out the ceiling, which is actually an inverted diamond shape, the waterwheel providing the feng shui, the fact that for her the diamond is simply about how precious her daughter is.

    Now I understood the success of this place. It is also a Mexican restaurant, ‘but I don’t see any Mexican dishes on the menu.’ That would be enough to throw most people; not Rosey. They may not have Mexican dishes but they have the hottest and best Mexican spices and chills and sauces brought courtesy of her stable clientele of Mexican guests who stay at her adjacent ‘casa particular’.

    She invites me to her Saturday night evening for ladies only to find ourselves spiritually with other women, or something like that, or maybe simply to sit around and drink martinis while gossiping. I will definitely go one of these days since Rosey is one of those infectious people who draw you in and leave you walking out with more a spring in your step. This is one of those places that is worth stopping by, checking out especially if you want somewhere with a home vibe going on.

    
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