Recently, I was lucky enough to be invited to a sneak preview of Reading's newest food and drinks venue, Revolucion de Cuba. I was over the moon when I found out that Reading was getting its very own Revs de Cuba. I visited the one in Milton Keynes earlier this year and it's hands down one of the best night's out I've had all year. At the time I only got to sample the amazing cocktails and dancefloor, but I spotted a tapas menu and I was dying to come back to give it a try!
Upon arrival, I was handed a welcome mojito and I was not disappointed. I don't often drink mojitos because a lot of the time, I find either the rum or the mint is too overpowering and it's not as nice as it should be but this one was perfect and I drank it a lot quicker than I probably should have done.
After the other guests had arrived, we were taken upstairs to the exclusive Havana Bar, which is available for hire, and were treated to a cocktail masterclass.We were taught how to make three cocktails, a Mojito, a Zombie and a Pornstar, and then given the chance to get behind the bar and make one ourselves. After enjoying my first mojito, I decided to give one a go myself and I was quite proud of the results, although I could be better at stirring! Being on the other side of the bar for a change was interesting - it certainly made me feel like I'd be too short to be a bar person! I also didn't realise just how much stuff is behind the bar - I was amazed to see so much fresh fruit, different cordials, different types of ice and other things. Of the three cocktails covered in the masterclass, I enjoyed the Zombie the most, but I liked the Pornstar a lot more than I thought I would too.
One thing I learnt during the cocktail masterclass is why you are given two straws, one straight and one bent, when you order a cocktail. This tradition dates back to prohibition times when, unsurprisingly, cocktails were excessively expensive. The high price meant cocktails were often shared between a man and wife - the wife would drink from the bent straw while her husband would stand behind her and drink from the straight one. I thought this was very cute!
After this, I finally got to sample some of the tapas available at Revolucion de Cuba. I'm a huge tapas fan - two of my favourite restaurants of all time being Qubana in Wakefield and La Taberna in Aberystwyth - so my standards are rather high. I was not disappointed. I got to sample quesadillas, chorizo, chicken skewers, prawns, nachos and other delights. There wasn't a single thing on my plate I didn't like.
Full to the brim with tasty, tasty tapas, we were then taken to the dance floor for a salsa lesson! I've not had dancing lessons since I was very young, and the dance I did as a child is very different to salsa. I was quite nervous - I am not a very coordinated individual and rather than sticking with one partner all evening, we regularly rotated and switched it up. I won't lie, I was absolutely diabolical at first, but I definitely improved as the evening went on. By the end of the lesson, I'd realised I really loved dancing and I'm now planning to take up salsa in the new year.
The venue itself is really beautifully decorated with a nice Cuban vibe to it. There's lots of seating for those wanting to eat or enjoy a more relaxed evening, with plenty of space for dancing later on. The staff were friendly and very knowledgeable when it came to food and drink.
I had a really great evening at Revolucion de Cuba Reading and I can tell you now, it will not be long before I return again. If you're in or near Reading, do not hesitate, get yourself there now! I can't wait to drag all my friends along.
Disclaimer: I was invited by a PR representative for Revs de Cuba to this event free of charge. Despite this, all opinions are my own - this is a really great bar and I'm super happy it has come to Reading.