Where to Find the Best Mojito in Cuba

For months, when we told people we were headed to Cuba, we were flooded with comments about how jealous they were that we’d be sipping mojitos on a beach for three and a half weeks. Well, the beach part is harder than it seems, but the mojito part certainly isn’t. Everywhere you go, you can buy a mojito or two, sometimes in more than one flavour (though usually just traditional, which is all you really need). After our first few days in Cuba, having had at least one mojito per day, we decided we were obliged to find out for our readers where to find the best mojito in Cuba. Neither our wallets nor our livers could afford for us to try every single mojito we found on a menu, but we’ve tried every one recommended to us along with a few extras, and have come up with a list of must-try, and best-to-avoid mojitos. We developed a rating system including Price, Strength, Taste, and Extra Information, and have included our results for your reading (and drinking) pleasure.

Havana

Plaza Nueva –

Address: Plaza Vieja, San Ignacio, Habana Vieja

  • Price – $4.00
  • Strength – Not very strong
  • Taste – Average
  • Extra Information
    • Live music often in the venue or neighbouring venues;
    • Good view of the main square of Havana.
  • Overall score – 2/5

Nao –

Address: Obispo No. 1, between San Pedro and Baratillo, Habana Vieja

  • Price – $3.00
  • Strength – Very strong on first visit, not strong on second visit
  • Taste – Good, quite sweet
  • Extra Information
    • Venue is very well placed, with views of the ocean on one side and Plaza de Armas on the other;
    • Often live music at the venue;
    • Great breeze in outside seating and more atmospheric than indoor seating.
  • Overall score – 3.5/5

D’Lirios –

Address: Paseo de Marti, Habana Vieja – opposite Capitolio

  • Price – $2.95
  • Strength – Average
  • Taste – Good, sweet
  • Extra Information
    • Goes down well with the delicious food on offer, or while waiting for a table (as the restaurant does not take bookings).
  • Overall Score – 3.5/5

Paladar Don Lorenzo –

Address: Acosta No. 260A, between Habana and Compostela – upstairs

  • Price – $3
  • Strength – Not strong
  • Taste – Ok, very sweet
  • Extra Information
    • Added mint liqueur to the mojito, which made it sickeningly sweet and overpowered by the artificial mint flavour;
    • Arguably the worst of the mojitos we tried in Cuba; perhaps they had run out of rum the day we visited and added mint liqueur instead. For this price there are many better mojitos available nearby.
  • Overall Score – 1/5

La Catedral –

Address: Calle 8, between Calle 5 and Calzada, Vedado, Havana

  • Price – $1.05
  • Strength – Average to strong
  • Taste – Good
  • Extra Information
    • The cheapest mojito we tried in Cuba, and well worth trying;
    • The food is very tasty, and enormous servings for the price.
  • Overall score – 4.5/5

 

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The (far too green) mojito at Don Lorenzo, Havana

Viñales

Casa del Mojito –

Address: Adela Azcuy Norte, just past Villa La Niña (No. 11)

  • Price – $3.90
  • Strength – Quite strong (Menu advertises 80ml of Havana Club 3 years)
  • Taste – Excellent
  • Extra Information
    • Large glass;
    • Excellent service – when your mojito is delivered you are advised to wait one minute, then stir, then drink;
    • The menu advertises the use of safe ice;
    • Best mint in any mojito we tried – flavoursome, well scented;
    • Several options as well as the traditional mojito, including mango and guava mojitos, both of which are amazing.
    • Extra fun provided with the super-long straws – see what you can make out of them!
  • Overall Score – 4.5/5

Yellow Restaurant on the corner of Salvador Cisneros and Adela Azcuy Norte –

  • Price – $2.00
  • Strength – Quite strong
  • Taste – Excellent
  • Extra Information
    • Small glass
    • Lime present in glass.
  • Overall Score – 3.5/5

La Plaza Bar & Café –

Address: Opposite the church in the centre of town, on the street off Salvador Cisneros

  • Price – $3.00
  • Strength – Good
  • Taste – Good
  • Extra Information
    • Small glass
  • Overall Score – 3/5

Paladar La Colonial –

Address: 101 Salvador Cisneros, Viñales

  • Price – $2.50
  • Strength – Good
  • Taste – Good
  • Extra Information
    • The food here unfortunately left a lot to be desired. You would do better to save your money and head to Casa del Mojito.
  • Overall Score – 3/5

 

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Two of the flavoured mojitos from Casa del Mojito, Vinales

Cienfuegos

Los Pinitos –

Address: Paseo El Prado, Cienfuegos

  • Price – $5.00
  • Strength – Average
  • Taste – Good
  • Extra Information
    • The bar is right next to the waterfront in Cienfuegos, which means beautiful sunset views sipping on a mojito.
    • This was the most expensive mojito we found in Cuba, and was certainly by no means worth the extra expense.
    • Served in small plastic cups.
  • Overall score – 2.5/5

 

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Our sunset mojitos at Los Pinitos, Cienfuegos

Trinidad

Taberna Ochún Yemayá

Address: Calle Boca, between Calle Jesús María and Frank País

  • Price – $2.00
  • Strength – Average
  • Taste – Good
  • Extra Information
    • The food and service here are excellent;
    • The mint in the mojitos is diced finely rather than a whole twig being put into the glass, meaning the flavour is released into the drink more.
  • Overall score – 3.5/5

 

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More fun with the straws from Casa del Mojito, Vinales – Guerrilla advertising!

It should be noted that very few mojitos we tried had evidence of lime present, though it may be that the juice was squeezed and strained before being added. Additionally, the mint in Cuba doesn’t seem to have much flavour, so most mojitos we tried were basically soda water, rum, and sugar, with a large amount of mint leaves in the glass which served more as a garnish than a flavouring device.

Weighing up the price with the other factors, we concluded that La Catedral in Vedado, Havana is where to find the best mojito in Havana; and Casa del Mojito in Viñales is the best mojito outside of Havana.

As a bonus tip, the best piña colada in Cuba is undoubtedly at Plaza Nueva in Havana Vieja. Perfectly creamy, deliciously coconutty and sweet, it is definitely worth a try (or two). If you happen to find yourself in Viñales, the piña coladas at La Plaza are very tasty, too.

Let us know if you find an amazing cocktail where you’re travelling – we’d love to try it out!

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A Pina Colada at Plaza Nueva, Havana

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