Reviews of Bongo's Cuban Cafe
View Menus at Bongos Cuban Cafe Dining LocationFull Service Lunch/Dinner
Disney Springs West Side
All Day Menu: http://allears.net/dining/menu/bongos-cuban-cafe/lunch-dinner
Child Lunch/Dinner Menu:
Walk Up Window Menu: http://allears.net/dining/menu/bongos-cuban-cafe-express/lunch-dinner
Reviewed by girldrgn8 Review Date: 05/07/2014
Rating: (3) Not Recommended
My husband and I ate here on May 2, 2014 for dinner. He ordered a dish that was shredded chicken, onions and rice with plantains and black beans. He said it was bland and not very good. My dish was a quarter chicken, yellow rice with vegetables and plantains. The chicken had no flavor, the rice was greasy at best. The best part was the plantains. For us, we could have made the entire meal at home and it would have come out better tasting. However, our server was good and attentive.
Reviewed by Hamill04 Review Date: 09/24/2013
Rating: (5) Not Recommended
I was torn if I should cancel my reservations here and try somewhere else after reading all the bad reviews and now that its over I'm still torn on whether I should have cancelled our reservations and tried somewhere else. It all started when we walked up to the hostess and gave her my name and time of my ADR. She could not find me and asked if I could give her a confirmation number. Thank goodness I had my phone on me and that I had the Disney Experience app because all my confirmation numbers were written down in my vacation notebook which I left in CT. It was 6pm and the restaurant was pretty much empty. I had been worried about the complaints of the noise but it didn't start getting noisy that Thursday night until around 8 when we were leaving so if you have small kids try to get an early dinner. Our server Lile was very friendly our drinks came out very fast but our food came out VERY slow. from our drinks to dinner was 45 minutes. My daughters pizza came out at 30 minutes but then it just sat there waiting for the rest of the food to show up. I guess it comes out of a different "station" as Lile explained and he offered to put it under the warmer but I never send food back after watching the movie "Waiting". My husband had the Cuban tour and I had the skillet of seafood. Both of our dishes were very good- I have never had Cuban food so I cant tell you if it tasted authentic or not but we both really enjoyed out dinner. The yellow rice was so good but the skillet is huge so I couldn't finish it. We ordered our desserts to go because a storm was coming in and the restaurant was filling up. We were on DDP and there was some confusion with that-no clue what is was but he kept bringing me receipts and asking me to sign them and then taking them back and fixing them and getting me to sign them again. He was so nice it was hard to get irritated with him. Finally he handed my husband the four desserts to go and we walk out. About halfway across Downtown Disney(towards the Marketplace) my husband says the desserts are leaking down his legs. What?! We stop and he opens them up. They were supposed to be three chocolate cakes and some vanilla custard-they were four ???? of whip cream, cherries and ice cream?! Who packs ice cream to go?! REALLY?! It was 80+degrees outside! As much as Lile was nice this is where I finally got upset. I understand you have no control of how long food takes but you should at least check the boxes and make sure the food is right!!! Or that it wont come out at different times!!! So my husband asks me if I want to go back and get the right desserts as he stands there with and overtired, whining kid in one hand and take out dripping down his legs in the other as a thunderstorm rolls in still 10 minutes from the buses(I had no clue there were two bus stops!). Ummmmm, no honey-just throw them away. I don't think we will go back. Ever.
Pros:Food was very good
Cons:Numerous "little" things...
Reviewed by caleal Review Date: 04/19/2013
Rating: (4) Not Recommended
I dined here on a Friday night (4/12). The atmosphere of this place is really fun. We sat on the patio which meant we had a good veiw of the courtyard and the DJ set up there for the night.
The service was excrutiating slow, which was confusing because we'd technically had two wait staff - our official waitress and her helper. The entire meal took nearly two hours, and we'd only ordered two drinks, an app platter to share, and two entrees - and we're definitely not "leisurely" eaters who linger. We sat for a full 20 minutes between our plates being cleared and our check appearing.
The food itself was semi-disappointing. We ordered the Bongos Combo appetizer platter to share. The fried stuffed potatoes were amazing. If I had only ordered a platter of these I'd probably be raving abuot the place. The rest of it was anywhere from boring (ham crouquettes reminded me of freezer cheesesticks) to disgusting (I couldn't finish the yucca cups).
This continued with husband's entree. He ordered the Masitas de Puerco (marinated, fried pork). His pork was so dry he had trouble eating it - especially without the waters we'd ask for about half an hour earlier. On top of that, it tasted as if it hadn't been seasoned with anything.
I had the Bistec Empanizado (breaded fried steak), which was definitely amazing - tons of flavor in the breading. I was not given a steak knife though, and my waitress never showed up so I could ask for one. So it was a bit difficult to saw through with my butter knife. The side dishes were pretty bland as well- black beans and rice and sweet plantains with very little flavor. I didn't hate them, but I didn't love them either.
Overall, I don't think I'd bother going back. The price of the meal was definitely not reflected in the quality of the food or service.
Cons:slow service, subpar food
Reviewed by Jason V Review Date: 09/29/2018
Rating: (10) Recommended
The food here is really good. We can here last minute as this was the only place in Disney Springs we could get a last minute reservation for a place we hadn't tried. We were very pleasantly surprised. They have lots of seating and have live music and dancers. Large menu selection
Pros:Live music, dancers, large menu, good food, lots of seating so easy to get a reservation.
Cons:Can be loud for little ones
Reviewed by tmbcole Review Date: 12/14/2017
Rating: (10) Recommended
The second we walked into Bongos we knew we were going to like it. The smell of the food and spices were amazing. We didn't have a reservation but we were able to get a table in less than 30 minutes. The drinks from the bar were perfect and the gentlemen was very quick to close our tab so we could be seated at our table. Our sever was quick, knowledgeable, and very professional.
I had the shredded beef with black beans and sweet plantains. My husband had beef tips, black beans, and mixed veggies. Best dinner we had all week. Excellent excellent.
Reviewed by Cstauffer1 Review Date: 11/01/2015
Rating: (10) Recommended
Had a great meal at Bongos. Definitely one of the most underrated restaurants at Disneyworld. We were able to walk right in without reservations. The atmosphere was lively with Cuban dancing and music and the food was incredible. We started our meal with a giant cocktail which while pricy, but we knew we got our money's worth as it was one of the few cocktails that we could tell actually had alcohol in it and not just juice. I ordered the seafood platter with Cuban sauce. It would have been comparable to cioppino, an Italian seafood soup with plenty of fresh shrimp, fish, mussels, scallops, and a small lobster tail in it. The tomato sauce/broth was flavorful and not overpowering. Husband enjoyed his meal as well. Overall a great experience.
Pros:food, service, atmosphere
Reviewed by Wendy Writes Review Date: 05/04/2014
Rating: (5) Recommended
I see many people have had a problem with this restaurant. All I can say is it was fine for us. We had a good meal, good service, and had a lot of fun. It is authentic Cuban food however, and maybe that was not a good choice for some.
I would say give it a try, it is a reasonably priced, nicely themed Downtown Disney restaurant.
Reviewed by AddictedtoDisney Review Date: 08/17/2013
Rating: (10) Recommended
On our last night there we had 8pm reservations and enjoyed every moment. It was a busy night being that it was Friday so service was a bit slow but no complaints. The drinks and food were delicious and cooked to perfection.