I love Liverpool in the Summer, the city comes alive more so that it already is & it’s a chance to enjoy the most of the sunshine & what the city has to offer. At the weekend with the sun beating down it was the perfect chance to head out & do one of my favourite things, get some good food. Now I am picky & a bit of a food snob but I like my food so when it’s good I know it’s good! On Saturday I headed to what I describe as Liverpool’s very own secret garden, the Botanical Gardens, located on New Bird Street you cannot miss the colourful entrance of multicoloured doors.
Stepping thorough the door into an outside space of picnic tables, wheelbarrow used as plant pots, artistic graffiti, mismatched sun chairs & cosy leather settee it is an urban secret garden. Nestled in the corner is FINCA the latest creative outcome brought to you from the team behind the Secret Diners Club, where they are serving up Cuban Street Food.
Heading inside you can’t help but get caught up in the quirky set-up, getting ourselves a table I noticed that all the furniture was mismatched from a comfy looking leather 3 piece suite to a white rocking chair. The purple VW camper van definitely catches your eye, set up as the bar with an array of bottles to select from decorated by pretty pink flamingo lights you can’t help but be in a good mood when in this place. After ordering some drinks from bar, I had a Liverpool Gin fresh fruit cocktail that was absolutely perfect for a Saturday afternoon in the sun. So with our drinks ordered we headed over to the guys at FINCA to see what Cuban food they were serving up.
The menu offers a small selection of Cuban dishes & it does change pretty regularly which is great if you end up becoming a regular which I know I will be, but at the heart of the menu is the Cubanos, a traditional hearty Cuban sandwich of slow cooked marinated meats. The Cubanos also comes with a mix of melted cheese, gherkins & a sharp kick of mustard giving you the perfect mix of taste & flavours for you to enjoy. Oh it was so delicious from the warm soft toasted bread that is a cross between a baguette & a panini with the kick of flavours it is definitely something you have to try.
The Cubanos is the main & most popular choice on the menu but don’t worry a veggie option is also available & we enjoyed a side of Mariquitas de Platános (plantain crisps) with a side dip that went perfectly with our sandwiches. Now the Cubanos was so tasty & it was also really filling enjoying every mouthful & not missing a crumb I was convinced I really couldn’t eat no more but then the Sweet Potato Fries came out & damn they were too good to ignore.
Ollie (one of the chefs at FINCA) was saying how popular the fries were & all cut by hand with a kick of spice they were some of the best Sweet Potato Fries I have had, I actually wouldn’t mind a little side dish of them now as I type this remembering how good they were!
Sipping my Gin cocktail & wonderfully content from the incredibly tasty Cuban food it was nice to sit back & enjoy the afternoon in the glorious sunshine. Now in Liverpool we are so spoilt with the fantastic mix of restaurants available but I always love trying somewhere new & trying dishes that I wouldn’t usually tend to go for & FINCA was perfect for that.
The food was fresh, tasty, busting with flavour that you can’t help but enjoy each bite. But still there was more to come, with my sweet tooth we tried buñuelos (Cuban doughnuts made from yuca.)Small enough for the perfect little mouthful we squeezed fresh lime onto of the cinnamon doughnuts & dunked them in syrup to give you the tastiest sweet mouthful that was the perfect ending to a delicious Cuban lunch. AA x