Located in Washington, D.C.�s Capitol Hill neighborhood, Banana Caf� & Piano Bar serves a combination of Puerto Rican, Cuban and Tex-Mex fare. The extensive menu includes both vegetarian and meat-based entr�es. Banana Caf� & Piano Bar frequently has live entertainment and is able to host special events.
Start out your experience at Banana Caf� & Piano Bar with an appetizer such as the chips and salsa or the Cuban empanadas. The restaurant has nightly specials in addition to regular entr�es like the Cuban picadillo, the Caribbean vegetarian combo and the carnitas. Additionally, the restaurant serves brunch on the weekends with menu items like huevos rancheros.
Great place to eat. Is a bit noisy an NOT a romantic place. But great for friends and good food.
We asked for a birthday song for our five year old. Only our waiter came out and sang. We really thought it would be ore singing. Our child wasn't impressed.
Otherwise, everything else was great. It was actually pretty empty considering it was a Friday night. The dining area inside was virtually empty. Used to be a packed house. Seems there's now more options on Barracks Row.
I used to come here to satisfy a hankering for homemade Cuban, but looking at recent reviews here and on Yelp, I concur that the food is somewhat in decline. I had the seafood paella - which was big and quite good, albeit salty. She had the roast leg of pork (best thing we had, IMO), but her rice side was also super salty, almost inedible. Drinks were OK - she liked her mojito, but my caprihinia tasted more like tequila with limes in it. I will be back for another shot, but will not bring her next time around.
We had a terrible experience. The customer service is horrible. Avoid this place at all cost.
Food was amazing but the service was slow. I would eat there anytime but would plan for a longer dining experience
Let's start with the Margarita it was watered down and when we informed the waiter he explained the kick was coming but he could add a shot for 5.00 dollars. Well it never came and the drink was left unfinished.
Spinach Quesadilla - limp, bland no flavor.
Tropical salad with steak- beef tough, salad poor presentation.
Seafoid Chimicunga - poor presentatiok, no flavor, abundance of cheese to compensate for minimal seafood.
Had to add chili hot sauce to everthing.
I have been going to Banana Café for years. The food is excellent and plentiful, the decor is interesting, and the service attentive. My only complaint is the dining room is generally too cold -- less air conditioning please.
Really authentic Caribbean cuisine!
Yummy food and great ambiance!!!
I met with a friend for lunch. We had the stuffed yucca as our appetizer - FABULOUS!! Next trip I may order it as my meal.
I am of puertorican decent and was so happy that I found this place that serves authentic dishes! Especially here in the DMV. I always enjoy taking my mom somewhere to eat that gives her the at home feel, Banana Cafe did just that. Loved that the waiters wore guayabera's as their uniform. Perfect touch. My mom enjoyed her pionones. We also had the monfongo con pollo, bistec w/ onions, breaded steak. *mouth waters* For appetizers we had bacalaito balls, alcapuria y empanadas. Topped it off with a pitcher of puertorican made piña colada, which was good to the last drop! 😊
My husband and I will be back without the grand babies so that we can enjoy the food, again, and also check out the piano bar upstairs.
The only tiny issue I had (not really an issue) is that I wish they would play the music so you can hear it.
A friend and I went to Banana for Sunday brunch before attending an event in the neighborhood. The food was OK, although I don't think it was particularly impressive. A basic selection of omelettes and french toast, priced a la carte. The usual mimosas--priced separately--and a selection of adult milkshakes. Since I'm not a mimosa fan, I had one of the latter. It was fine, but again, nothing special. It was a nice day, but still too chilly to sit outside; it seems there is some outdoor space, although it looked pretty small. Since there was a crowd most of the time we were there (about 12-2), the noise level indoors was high. At the risk of repeating myself: fine but nothing special. The redeeming factor was the service, which was great--and that's not a small thing.
Better than I expected. Can see the comparison to Cactus Cantina; some of the décor is cheesy. The carnival masks were innovative and unusual. Laminated menus turned out to be a good thing. Service was overly helpful, but often people want to get out in an hour for lunch. Decided to take my time. Gambas al ajillo was quite good and shrimp actually were jumbo. Carnitas cubanos was every bit as good as L’auriol Plaza’s Masitas de Puerco if not better. Sauteed veggies were disappointing. The garlic was neither the sweet of roasted not the pungent of sautéed. Squash, broc and carrots are a fine combination, but to have comparable texture, the broc needed to be cut into smaller pieces and the carrots julienned rather than small stalks.
I always enjoy visiting Banana Café. I've eaten here solo, with lunch companions, and large groups. The service is always attentive. The bar makes a fantastic mojito and the music is fantastic. Favorite dishes: camarones andalusz - delicious shrimp stuffed with crab served with pico, black beans and rice; and the fish tacos - fresh, tender, and well seasoned tilapia. The restaurant is a hit loud because it has a lot of hard surfaces that don't absorb noise. Depending on where you sit, the chairs may not be the most comfortable. But order a mojito and you won't be bothered by a hard seat or decibels, and the food and service will transport you South to a warmer place.
While the food was good(not great), there were 2 issues that keep me from recommending this restaurant: 1. The noise. The acoustics are terrible, making it extremely noisy and hard to carry on a conversation. 2. The service - and this is really the main issue. The service was unacceptable. Our waiter was very nice, but once he took our order we rarely saw him again. He brought me the wrong entree(but charged me for the one I ordered), he forgot to bring a drink order until we flagged him down (with much effort), and never brought a desert we ordered, at which point we just gave up and asked for our check. The overall experience was disappointing enough that I won't go back.
Way too loud for a restaurant. Cant believe downstairs would be reserved for parties, upstairs for bad loud karaoke. where do you actually eat dinner??!! Bad call
We chose long-time favorite Banana Cafe for an important Sunday brunch we were hosting. They were, as always, just wonderful. Great food, wonderful service, and a lovely place to share a special time with friends.
730 pm on Sunday -- every table full -- 40+ for appetizers to arrive
I never leave reviews but this restaurant warrants one. I went with a party of 4 from work for dinner. The tortilla chips were stale but the salsa was good. They were out of every appetizer I tried to order. The tostones had obviously been sitting out for a while before they were brought to the table as they were so dry I had to drink water after each bite. I had the breaded steak which was delicious but I was already jaded from the problems prior to my main course arriving. We brought up our concerns with the meal and were told that the kitchen didn't have time to prep in the morning so they were out of a lot of items. They still tried to charge us for the chips and did nothing to reassure our next visit would be better.
We went before the DC United game. The food is moderate (not great , but not bad). I was disappointed with my dish - the vegetarian platter - but that was my fault. The menu is so overwhelming that I didn't read it carefully & when we were finishing, I heard a woman at the table next to us order ceviche, which I hadn't seen. I totally would have ordered that. Their salsa needs some zip to it; it's a bit bland & watery. We got the house margaritas, which were a bit sweet - I didn't really taste any tequila.
Overall, it's a good place to sit outside & watch the Barracks Row goings-on, but don't expect the best Mexican/Cuban meal.
Good service. Food was a nice change from the standard American fare.
made last minute brunch reservations & was not disappointed! the food was delicious (burritos & caribbean breakfast), service attentive, prices reasonable, and location very accessible (2 blocks from eastern market metro). will definitely go back! (but consider making reservations... it was getting quite busy as we were leaving ~12 noon).
The food was very good on a recent Saturday night, however the tables were packed in and it was very loud.
Best margarita I've had in a long time. Go for the pitcher.
Great neighborhood place. Consistently good food and service. Great piano bar upstairs. Awesome upstairs bartender!
Not easy to find Cuban food anywhere in DC .. loved the veggie Cuban platter.
We went to this place to celebrate a birthday. We had a party of 13....the staff was very accomodating and found enough space for our party. The waitstaff was a little slow but we saw the "servers wanted" sign on the front door so we weren't too upset. The food was absolutely amazing and the cocktails were very tasty! Our reservation was for 6pm and the place already packed, definitely recommend reservations. The place was kinda loud but we didn't mind.....great place to take your kids if they're a little rowdy. Would definitely recommend this place to all my friends and family.
I came to Banana Cafe on Saturday night around 10:30. I made a reservation two hours before. My co workers and I just wanted to have dinner and drinks after a long day. This restaurant is truly a gem. Our drinks were strong like I like them and our food was outstanding. The waiter gave exceptionally great service. My co workers and I will definitely be back.
The food was delicious and the drinks were perfect. Out waiter was very prompt yet polite. I highly recommend!
Service was excellent, as well as, the food. Just one point to be made regarding the food, it should be hot when served to your customers, not luke warm, but hot.
The restaurant was a great, casual dining experience. Quality Tex-Mex cuisine. The piano bar was a lot of fun. Plenty of good music and a handful of folks dancing and singing along!
I've lived in D.C. for almost 3 years now and finally managed to stop in for lunch with some friends. We all have lived in NYC/Boston at some point and have discriminating tastes when it comes to Latin food. The menu was like a foodie's dream. Mofongo, ceviche, paella, plantains, yuca, cubanas, congri, and more. Every favorite Latin food in one place. It was wonderful. Highly recommend!
Food from Puerto Rico is hard to find in this town. Glad that it is here. I wanted good mofongo and got it. Service was pretty good and very friendly.
Delicious huevos rancheros, my companion was very happy with the enchiladas and the Bloody Marys were strong and spicy.
This was a first visit for brunch. It has a lively interior and nice owner and wait staff. Good food, fun ambience. I will return.
I had the shrimp in a white wine sauce. My friends each had the taco-enchilada combo platter. We were laughing and chatting for hours, but when that food first arrived, the table was silent. Always a good sign!
My quest enjoyed the restaurant and the choice to dine in or outside. The food was good and the waiter was attentive to our needs.
We took a co-worker to lunch there to celebrate leaving his job and moving on. He plans to open a non-profit organization to benefit Cuban citizens, so I selected Banana Cafe for the cuisine. Everyone was satisfied with their selections. The beef was a little tough, but the plantains were excellent, very sweet. More black beans could have been provided to cover the rice which was a larger portion. The food could have been served hotter. Not sure why it was luke warm as the restaurant was not crowded at the time.
The Cuban food is delicious and the friendly service is top notch. We were disappointed that the Piano Bar was closed and on a Saturday night. Something about new furniture but couldn't that be done during the week? Also, no cheesecake available.