Garces Is Opening a Lounge Below Rosa Blanca

Jose Garces is opening Nacional 56 downstairs from Rosa Blanca at 707 Chestnut Street on Wednesday, November 26th. The lounge will offer Latin music, cocktails and light Cuban fare four nights a week.

While Garces handles the food and drink, David Pena and Pena Productions (Boogie Nights at the Tropicana in Atlantic City and a host of other casino venues around the country) will handle the DJs and live music. Pena says “he [Garces] does food. We do nightlife and we’re both Latino; you know it will be the real deal.”

Named for the Hotel Nacional in Havana, which was swarmed with celebrities and socialites in pre-Castro Cuba, Nacional 56 will offer different musical options on each floor plus new menus of cocktails and snacks.

Signature cocktails will include drinks like the Smoked Hemingway, made with Caliche rum, smoked grapefruit and lime and a classic mojito. Comfort bites at Nacional 56 will include Chicharrones y Palomitas (Adobo Spiced Popcorn with Pork Rinds); Croquetas de Pollo and Croquetas de Jamón (Chicken and Ham Croquettes); and a selection of empanadas.

Happy hour will be offered from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and the music will play through at least midnight. Nacional 56 will not require a cover charge.

For opening night, Wednesday, November 26th, the downstairs lounge will open at 7 p.m. with DJ June Rodriguez, who will be spinning Latin tracks to get the party going. Then at 10 pmDe Tierra Caliente, a Latin party band, will perform upstairs.

Nacional 56 [Foobooz]