Looking for a destination for a great casual Father’s Day Weekend night out on Saturday the girls decided to take me out for a wonderful dinner of Cuban cuisine at Casona in Collingswood, NJ.
Casona has been around since 2006 and was a favorite of mine for lunch while I was working in Collingwood years ago. Over the years my wife and have enjoyed their unique menu mix of Cuban and Latin inspired food. This was the first time we took the kids and we were not disappointed.
To start off the meal we went with their traditional guacamole. They offer five varieties ranging from a simple basic recipe to a more creative versions like an Asian tuna guacamole. If you can’t decide which one to try they offer a sampler too. The portion is huge, served with house fried tortilla and plantain chips, and is perfect for sharing amongst a party of four. Our order was delicious.
For the main course I had the Churrasco Steak. It’s a grilled skirt steak served with fried yuca, a mushroom ragout, more of that great guacamole, and accompanied with Casona’s take on chimichurri sauce. The steak was done to perfection and the yuca, that my wife didn’t steal, was awesome. The best part is the chimichurri, Casona makes this more as a tangy vinegar sauce than the typical herb puree. It’s goes perfectly with the steak.
The Wookette had the Sea Bass and opted to substitute sautéed baby spinach for the Chipotle mash potatoes that it typically comes with. The kitchen was happy to make the substitution and my wife loved the meal. I stole a few bites and the fish was light and moist, cooked perfectly. Casona prepares this with just enough seasoning to bring out the natural sweet flavors of the Sea Bass without covering it up in an overdone sauce. Very well done.
Our meal was rounded out with chicken tenders for the kids. The girls loved them but I don’t judge a restaurant on how good their chicken fingers are. I judge a restaurant more on their willingness to cater to special requests and how kid friendly they are. Casona, while being great food for adults, is perfect for kids. The offer a full kid’s menu, had no problem making a custom salad for my youngest, and my girls would go there just to get the Jarritos Mexican Soda.
All in it was a great dinner. Casona is a great choice for a date night, family dining, or a group outing. It’s a BYOB so bring your favorite wine or brew. If you go I recommend going in the spring, fall or a mild summer night so you can enjoy dining outside on Casona’s covered porch. It’s on the Western edge of the Haddon Ave Collingswood “Restaurant District” so it’s a little quieter with less street traffic.
A note on the service: I’ve said before and I’ll say it again that good service is essential for a great dining experience. The service this night at Casona was exceptional thanks to our waiter Kyle and the other staff that supported him. The entire meal was perfect and just when I thought it couldn’t get better, as I was leaving, Kyle came chasing me down the street with the credit card I had forgotten on the table … Thanks man, I owe you one!
Categories: Food Review