Casta's Rum Bar
The moment a guest walks in the door, they feel the warmth, spirit, and upbeat energy of Cuba, which has been recreated here. From the visual aesthetic, to the food, cocktails, music, and hospitality culture– every detail has been considered.
Casta’s offers a robust menu of Cuban favorites - a cuisine known for
fresh seafood from the Caribbean, flavorful spices, and a heavy Spanish influence. The star of the menu is the Classic Cuban Sandwich with yellow mustard, roasted pork, glazed ham, swiss cheese and pickles – which Castaneda has spent hours honing and developing. The secret is in the bread, which is flown in from Miami. Additional menu highlights include Empanadas, Croquetas, and Ceviche Caribeno with citrus, mango, pineapple, cucumber
salad, and plantain chips.
The food was excellent. We shared lots of small plates and they were all great, especially the bacon wrapped plantains. The mojitos were also excellent. The only issue was that we were seated right by the bar and the music was very loud. Also we were at a high but very small table so it was really difficult to fit all our food and drinks at one time. We had to abandon our water glasses and individual plates and just ate from the serving plates but it was worth it!!
Simply profound flavors of food. Such a wonderful ambiance as well.
From the minute you walk in, you're welcomed by a very warm & friendly hostess. Server was friendly with good service too.
We got few of their cocktails, all good and we got most of the small plates to share. Our favorites were the bacon wrapped plantains and the pork chunks. In general the food was tasty and appropriate sizes. Not too small, not too large (for DC).
We also enjoyed having dietary restrictions (v) or (gf) listed on the menu, specially for a group who has some of these restrictions.
One note we had was how loud it could get down there. Initially music was very low, but those at the bar were loud (expected from a DC HH spot). Later once the DJ/music was on, it was loud! There were few couples dancing but for a restaurant it was a bit loud for our taste.
If you're trying to catch up with friends, or on a romantic date, make sure they do not have a DJ that night. Unless you're more interested in dancing :)
Nevertheless, we really enjoyed Casta's Rum Bar! It's a great new spot and I will be back for sure.
Service was unimpressive. Staff was not well trained or very attentive. We were seated next to kitchen at bar. No table should be there. Too much traffic and noise.
The space is well decorated; and, the outside seating and bar were very nice. We are Cuban; and, with a few exceptions it was not remarkable. The drinks were good especially the mojito
Not how I expected the evening to go.
Excited to see they had availability for an impromptu date with my husband, I made reservations about 30 minutes before the selected time. Arrived at the restaurant only to be told that they had given the table to someone else and that we could sit at the patio (weather in the low 50s) or at the bar. Apologies were not really given. First faux pas.
We sit at the bar. Order drinks and food. Second faux pas. After 45 minutes and no food—we had ordered 4 appetizers that did not involve much cooking, we ask about the status of our food order and they tell us there has been a mix up with the food... hmmm... and even then, it took another 30 minutes to get food... it really felt like they forgot to put the order for a second time.
To make up for it, they offered a complimentary drink, which they immediately forgot to prepare and put us in the awkward situation to request it even though the offered it in the first plate. Nothing was comp’d in the bill other than the complimentary drink. I felt given all the mishaps more should have been done.
Food and ambiance is great, but they still have a long way to go in terms of customer service. Love this restaurant is a new addition to the neighborhood. Now it’s time to get it right.
I was disappointed with “salsa night”. The DJ did not engage with us. I was looking forward to a class and some dancing. Neither happened. My Cuban sandwich was not as good as my first time there a few months ago. Will not be back.
This place came recommended by a friend. It’s a cool set up with a upbeat ambiance. A lot of younger professionals as patrons the night we visited. They had a good cocktail list. The food however left a lot to be desired. We ordered small starter plates to try out. Everything came out either lukewarm or cold. Shrimp Aljillo had little flavor and the tostones it came with were cold and stale. The ribs had a good sauce but seemed like it was just brushed on at the end, also came out cold. The plantain wrapped in bacon was the only tasty thing we had, although also wished it came out hot. The service was nice and friendly which saved the night. I would come back for drinks but probably not the food.
Great Cuban sandwich, reminded me of the sandwiches in NYC at Cuban restos.
Great service, great suggestions for wine and rum.
Good cigars, but one can bring in own cigars, no additional fee.
Great food. Decent drinks. Slightly overpriced for the portion size you receive on appetizers. Live DJ and dance floor at 10pm mostly Salsa music. Overall great experience.
The place is very cool. Loved the building and the drinks. So, those are a plus. Good ambience as well. Unfortunately, the food is sub-par. The small plates lack originality and authentic latin (or Cuban) flavors (some sazón Goya would go a long way). It's true that I only ate the snmall plates. Half of the menu are of sandwiches. And, the bite I took of the grilled cheese was good. So, perhaps the sandwiches are a strength. But really, neither the ceviche nor the pork chunks nor the croquetas were any good. And these are Cuban/latin/Hispanic staples. So really, they should be getting those right. For example, your croquetas should be freshly friend, crisp and the filling soft and googy and flavorful. So, if you go, go for the sandwiches and drinks.
Layout is evocative of carribean locale. Nice. Depending on the time of your visit, service can be less than stellar. Food is savory, though a little safe. Our yucca did not come paired with garlic mojo. Might consider again for drinks and social activities like smoking a cigar.
Very mediocre food
Overall, food and drinks were great. Service and food were slow, but our party arrived at different times. Check out was okay.
Great food and ambiance.
Food and cocktails good. Cool decor and vibes. Very loud, service was not great. Our server did not take our order for a long time, and another server kept coming up asking us for our order after we placed it. seems like they need to work on management a bit.
I’m Cuban, so I may be biased, but I just loved the place,
right from the entrance. Great vibe, cool spot - indoors and outside. Food and drinks were great!
We had several items on the menu and all were great, including the pork sandwich, the chicharron and the sweet plantains wrapped in bacon.
Looking forward to going back this week and next time I’m in DC.
My only complaint is the image of Che Guevara - again, I’m Cuban.
We had an amazing server Brianna, who was very knowledgeable of the menu and offered her favorite drinks and menu items which we took her up on. It was free salsa lesson night, which has the energy and noise level to a high volume. The dishes are made to share and we ordered Several. The only small plate we ordered that we didn’t enjoy was the pork cubes and caramelized onions. The pork lacked flavor and the onions weren’t quite as caramelized. The empanadas were absolutely amazing. The bacon wrapped Maduros were Perfect. The pork ribs with the spicy rum sauce was also good, but could’ve been a bit warmer as it arrived to our table. Last but not least the churros were a nice touch to end our meal.
A good date night spot and we will be back again for salsa lesson.
Amazing outdoor area - perfect for a date or group get together. Beautiful setting and delicious food, plus great ceviche.
Great drinks, good food. A little loud for conversation inside. Indoors and outdoors with a nice ambiance.
Good drinks. Food tasted okay but was over priced. Recommend sitting outside if it’s salsa night (Wednesday).
Note to owner - get acoustic ceiling tiles. The noise level needs to be addressed.
Fun place to eat during my weekend in the city. Food was really tasty, drinks were good, good service as well. Music was really cooking on a Sunday night of the long weekend. Would definitely recommend, and hit again if back in the city.
Slow service, had to send mojitos back, ordered eight small plates- nothing special
Born in Cuba, I was really looking forward to our visit. I love the ambiance and decorations. Was there during Happy Hour Friday. Great service and prices. Cuban sandwich was spot on. Recommend that you fry the empanadas for a more authentic flavor. Nice touch with the ropa vieja empanada option. My Cuban opinion, the ham croquetas were tasty , but skip that odd garlic sauce on the plate and shape them a little longer! Great job guys, I will be back!
Other than a group of pound young people sitting close by our experience was a 10. Our server was excellent.
This is a great one time experience. The ambiance makes you feel like you are actually in an open-air Cuban restaurant in Cuba. Besides that you’ll get ok service and some average drinks (except the mojito it’s worth it). The food is just ok and will not fill you up, so eat before or plan to eat somewhere after!
Excellent selection of Cuban rum cocktails and a fine cigar bar outside. Loved the authentic Cuban food and the decor and variety - the moment you step in you get a feel of Havana!
Definitely have some kinks to work out, but once they settle in, this should be a fun spot. Good cocktails and great ambiance, but need to work on the food.
Great Service, Great Setting, we sat outside
Food was OK, could be better, overall a very
The space is beautiful. But that is where the compliments end. The service is atrocious. And when you bring this fact to the employee's attention, they all say this is their second week of business. Took the kitchen 75 minutes to prepare a Cuban sandwich, that lacked flavor. Cuban chicken soup had to be sent back because chicken was over cooked. Appetizers came out with the sandwiches. Asked for more plantain chips, told they were out. But the table next to me order items that came with plaintain chips. Told four different people I wanted more chips to eat w the black bean hummus and salsa. Never got them. Grilled cheese sandwich was ordered to replace the Cuban chicken soup and it took an additional 45 minutes. Finally, I asked one of the servers, if someone was killing the cow to make the cheese needed for the sandwich, while asking if another person was in the field getting the plantains needed to make the chips. Mojitos were okay. Nothing memorable and definitely not worth spending another $12.00. Others at my table felt the same re the Cuba Libre. The manager came to the table when we first sat down. After being told by his staff that we were not pleased, he never returned. Never got my plaintain chips. Told other item was being sent out free of charge. It never came. Had to wait 10 more minutes for a copy of the receipt. Terrible. Article in the DC Eater lied. Should have known better to cancel my reservation at an existing DC restaurant for this new untested place. Having the server stand over me while I Reveiw the bill and calculate her gratitudity is equally troubling. Casta's owners need to visit the Starr Restaurant Group's Alma de Cuba I. Philadelphia to understand service and taste mind-blowing food.
Drinks are very good. Thought the mojitos would be the best ever, but got very watered down before halfway finished.
Food - very small portions especially for the price. The ceviche was minuscule. The empanadas were good. Cuban sandwich was very good. When serving the plantain chips, don’t give mostly bits and pieces.
Customer service needs to improve as we had a complaint and the manager/owner never came to our table, but we had seen him earlier at tables on both sides of us. Very disappointed.
Live music was fun!!
Time will tell how this place does. Not bad for the first week.
Delicious food and a great atmosphere.