ИконописиконографияikoniсондажиLast week was the husband’s birthday, and it’s been our tradition every year that we go out to dinner to celebrate, anywhere he chooses. This year, we had a whole new slew of restaurants to choose from, since we live in the Valley. So, the husband went with one of his new favorites - Versailles - for amazing Cuban food.
Versailles actually has a five locations around LA, but the closest to us is the Encino location. Tucked into a strip mall - as most good restaurants are - Versailles is always busy. In fact, this is probably the most popular cuban restuarant in LA - fans are completely addicted to the slow-cooked meats, flavorful beans, and sweet plantains. At least, I know that I am!
My husband and I are both fond of shredded meats, but while he is more drawn to the swine, I am a fan of the cow. This works out well, as then we can both try a little bit of each other’s meals.
However, before either of us were able to dig into our delicious dinners, we were first presented with Versailles’ garlic bread.
Coated in oil and topped with garlic, this stuff is seriously addictive! And, since I always judge a restaurant on the quality of its freebies, I knew from my first visit that I would love the food.
Now, on to the entrees. I believe the husband and I both ordered two of the more popular dishes on the menu. The husband ordered the lechon asado (Cuban shredded roast pork), which is served with sliced onions, rice, black beans (not pictured), and fried plantains.
The pork has a savory, sour flavor. It is marinated in garlic mojo criollo sauce, which I assume includes lime juice, vinegar, or maybe both. It is extremely tender and flavorful, and I really don’t think the husband would ever order anything else.
I ordered the ropa vieja shredded beef (translation: old clothes, which it doesn’t taste anything like!). It’s shredded flank steak prepared in a tomato and wine sauce, with bell peppers and onions as well. It is also served with rice, black beans, and fried plantains.
You can see the black beans come seperately in a cup. I loved this dish - it’s very beefy in flavor, and the sauce is amazing. The meat is so tender and flavorful, and contrasts perfectly with the sweetness of the plantains. I also love how the rice can sop up both the beans and the sauce from the meat.
Another of the most popular dishes at Versailles, which I have never tried due to my love for the beef, is the famoso pollo versailles - a half chicken marinated in garlic sauce and garnished with sliced white onions.
As you can see from the above pictures, Versailles does not skimp on portions. In fact, you will most likely get two meals for the price of one with all of the food that you get. And, the prices are very reasonable. This very large dinner for two cost about $30 with tax and tip.
The other thing I like about Versailles is that it is very casual. You can definitely bring a large group here for celebrations, young children, or anyone who enjoys a good, home-style meal. The atmosphere is laid back, with simple tables and chairs, and the waitstaff are very friendly. I know that the husband and I will return to Versailles many more times in the future, and I highly suggest that you readers give it a try.
Versailles Cuban Restaurant’sValley location is in Encino at 17410 Ventura Blvd, Encino, CA 91316
Phone: (818) 906-0756