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85, of Scottsdale, AZ, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on April 21, 2013. Born July 24, 1927 in Havana, Cuba, Gilbert came to the U.S., settling in New York in the 1950s. Gilbert and his wife BJ have owned and operated the Havana Cafe restaurants for 25 years in Phoenix and Scottsdale. Many of the recipes are from Gilbert's mother, "Mima" whose authentic recipes are still part of the menu. He is survived by his loving wife of 45 years, BJ; daughters Rachel (Gil) and Caraline (Eric) and four grandchildren, Isaac, Gabriella, Vivian, and Benjamin; his sisters Oria, Ondina and Olga and many nieces and nephews who loved him like a father. He was proceeded in death by his sister Onelia. There will be an Open House celebrating Gilbert's life at the Havana Cafe restaurant located at 6245 E. Bell Rd. in Scottsdale on Sunday, April 28 from 1 to 4pm. All friends and business associates are welcome. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Reading Is Fundamental.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Apr. 24, 2013