Lunch – Made in Havana – April 10, 2024 – Los Angeles, CA.

Made in Havana is so inspiring. It’s a real true story of a person’s love of home and country, and the hope that all of your dreams do come true in America. I met Noel and Natalie Toledo at a function at The Taglyan Complex for a Lexus car event. They both were so warm and inviting and their restaurant – as the crow flies – is 5 minutes from my residence. I loved what I tasted at the event and was invited to come and try more of their delicious Cuban fare. Boy was I in for a surprise, real Cuban recipes from the heart, every bite has a story, that all emanates from love.

Here’s What I Tried:


Cafecito, Cuban Espresso. A delightful coffee that has rich cream and is so nice and sweet.

Iced Café Con Leche, Cuban Latte. A beautiful refreshing coffee that hits the spot.

Jupina, Pineapple Soda. A very light and refreshing soda with hints of pineapple flavors, it’s very tropical and it went perfect with my Cuban lunch.


Aunt Olga’s Black Beans, a secret family recipe. These black beans are everything, a 60-year-old recipe, with just the right number of seasonings, including my favorite, a pinch of cumin. I asked about the recipe and Noel said he would have to kill me to give me the recipe, just kidding!

Chicken Empanadas, with delicious chicken breast stuffed in pastry, with your choice of house made dipping sauces. The dipping sauced are just divine, my favorite being the mojo garlic sauce.

Beef Empanadas, with deliciously seasoned picadillo beef stuffed in a pastry, with your choice of house made dipping sauces. This one was my favorites, it just is very hearty, jam packed with great Cuban seasonings, lots of ground beef, just terrific.

Chicken Croquettes, the perfect bite, crispy smooth, with ground chicken, and coated in breadcrumbs. With your choice of house made dipping sauces. These little darlings are silky and have a nice subtle well-rounded flavor, just the great way to start my lunch.

Ham Croquettes, crispy, bite-size logs of smooth ground ham, coated in breadcrumbs. Ham Croquettes (or Croquetas de Jamón) are the perfect breakfast or snack! This side dish has a nice homemade feel, which is chalk full of ham flavor, but truly another great menu item.

Cuban Yucca Fries, with your choice of house made dipping sauces. These are a root vegetable, so they are super healthy. Their texture is different from a potato, they are a bit stringier, but super yummy. Try each dipping sauce with each bite.

The Cuban Sandwich:

Oh So Sweet Cubano, with roasted pulled pork, plantains, Swiss cheese, house made yellow mustard with dill pickles. They serve Aunt Olga’s Beans with every order. This is just the best sandwich I have had in a long time. The sweetness of the plantain with the tangy pickle, and the pulled pork is a beautiful marriage of lovely flavors. It’s just a must have menu item for me.

Grilled Mojo Chicken Sandwich

Chicken Breast marinated 24 hours in their house Mojo sauce with Provolone cheese, sautéed onions and house made curry mustard. For the chicken lover this one is for you. There delicious Cuban bread with its melty cheese offers up some great lunch time eating.


The Cuban Vegan Farmer Bowl with Mojo jackfruit, Aunt Olga’s black beans, Cuban white rice, sweet plantains and topped with pickled onions. For the Vegan, this has the ingredients and nuances that Cuban food has to offer but not with any meat. It is robust and filling, with nice home cooked flavors. The tangy pickled onions really add a great zest to this amazing dish.

Cuban Philly Bowl, Ropa Vieja (Brisket) served with Aunt Olga’s black beans, Cuban white rice, sweet plantains and topped with sautéed onions. One of my favorites for sure. The onion is sliced very thick, and the brisket is so tender, it just what you would expect your Cuban grandmother to make. It’s just that good.


Curry Mustard, a perfect balance of tangy mustard with curry nuances, just spectacular.

Mojo Garlic Sauce, full of rich garlic flavor, the perfect sauce for the yuca fries.

Cilantro Garlic Aioli. A unique sauce with the delightful refreshing cilantro splash.

Spicy Aioli, hot and flavorful, really a great dipping sauce.


Chocolate Chip Cookies. All I can say is wow, these cookies are huge with great big pieces of chocolate chips, just awesome.

Chocolate Mouse Cake. The chocolate is rich and creamy, a must have dessert item.

Peanut Butter Brownie, this is by far the creamiest tender brownie, it just melts in your mouth. Natalie is the baker; of all of their yummy deserts, and she bakes onsite.

It’s really a neighborhood restaurant on busy Beverly Blvd. There are 14 seats outside, with a very small inside with Cuban artwork, and Cuban music. They had 2 restaurants, closed their Cahuenga North Hollywood location in July 2021, their chef had a health emergency, and they just couldn’t run the place without him. But there are plans to open a new one in Studio City soon.

Noel says that Cuban food gets a bad rap, too heavy, and not healthy, so he is doing his take on modern Cuban food. Food that is heathy and not heavy. Made in Havana has been at this location there for the last 3 years. It’s home cooked food at its best.

Made in Havana is really a family affair, Noel’s dad, Manuel Toledo, who is 81 years young, he was a pro baseball player and came to US in 1980. Noel’s Mom, Elba is 78, she comes in regularly to help with lots of stuff, they both live nearby.

Noel wants to educate customers about Cuban culture and food, Noel left Cuba in 1980, lived in Spain for 6 months, that was the plan then, the route of exiled Cubans was to go straight to Spain and then the US. He really doesn’t want to get into all of the politics of Cuba now, but he says you can’t get any food products from Cuba, the government will not allow it for export. Noels dream, is to go back to Cuba and open a Made in Havana there, he says, “wouldn’t it be something – local boys makes good.”

About Noel & Natalie Toledo:

Since emigrating from Cuba, Noel Toledo and his family have been searching for authentic and mouthwatering Cuban food that embodies Cuban culture, heritage, and flavors.

His passion for Cuban food crafted from fresh and flavorful ingredients led them to embark on this new venture of opening a polished fast-casual Cuban restaurant, which is missing from the restaurant landscape.

Through their travels, Noel and his wife have been inspired to cook and are passionate about trying out new recipes while at the same time embracing generation-old family dishes. Their passion is contagious, and it will show in all aspects of Made In Havana

These family recipes and dishes made from the heart have been the inspiration for Noel’s restaurant and will be one of the many culinary highlights of his concept, correctly named Made in Havana.

It’s really a very sweet gem in this very robust neighborhood, and the best news is that there is free parking in the back. So, there is no excuse to get in your car today and run to Made in Havana!!


Monday 12pm – 8pm

Tuesday 12pm – 8pm

Wednesday 12pm – 8pm

Thursday 12pm – 8pm

Friday 12pm – 8pm

Saturday 12pm – 6pm

Sunday 12pm – 6pm

Made in Havana
8116 Beverly Boulevard
Beverly Grove – Los Angeles, CA. 90048 

+1 323-305-7211

*Note some Content was taken off of their website.


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