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  • Habana Libre

    Post #1 - November 14th, 2006, 5:14 pm
    Post #1 - November 14th, 2006, 5:14 pm Post #1 - November 14th, 2006, 5:14 pm
    i was walking down chicago ave with a friend today when i happened to approach a new place next to flo's called habana libre. it struck a note as i remembered reading hammond's review in the reader last wk. it smelled good as i approached, a sure sign, so we ducked in for some lunch. having lived in south fla for nearly 10 yrs, i've had quite a bit of cuban food. this was excellent.

    they were doing a nice amount of business as well for a new place @ lunchtime. we had an app combo for two that included tostones w/garlic sauce, fried yucca, papas rellenas and a ham and chix croquette. all were fried to perfection and very clean tasting. fresh oil was obvious, no other side tastes, and ea item was done to it's particular correct amount of cooking time. well done. i think i'd customize that selection a bit more next time, but as a good demo of the kitchens abilities, it was a nice starter.

    the stand out was the pan con lechon (griddle toasted and pressed french bread w/roasted suckling pig and sauteed onions). excellent, and a steal for $4.95. great texture between the toasted french bread, the soft and moist lechon and the toothsome onions. simple and delicious. coupled that with some fried sweet plantians and a couple cups of cafe cubano ($1.) and a nice flan w/coconut. very nice lunch for two @ $20 total.

    looking fwd to going back and trying some of hammond's other recommendations, the ropa vieja, which he said was the best he's had in chi, the oxtails and the coctel de camarones.

    inexpensive, pleasant and delicious. thanks david.

    Habana Libre
    1440 W Chicago Ave
    Chicago, IL 60622
    312-243-3303
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #2 - November 14th, 2006, 5:39 pm
    Post #2 - November 14th, 2006, 5:39 pm Post #2 - November 14th, 2006, 5:39 pm
    Thanks. Been meaning to check it out. Does the restaurant claim that its lechon is truly made with suckling pig? That would be extraordinary (even though lechon literally means suckling). Pan con lechon is a favorite of mine, though many Chicago versions are too dry. A good pan con lechon is wet like a (not dipped) Italian beef.

    PS, I suppose that the owners are Cuban, but I have a peeve about leaving the article out of La Habana when the Spanish is used. Not quite as bad as the rampant misuse of ñ in Habanero, but still.
  • Post #3 - November 14th, 2006, 5:50 pm
    Post #3 - November 14th, 2006, 5:50 pm Post #3 - November 14th, 2006, 5:50 pm
    truthfully, not. if i recall correctly the menu says pork. my past experience though mainly in s. fla is that lechon = suckling pig. the emigres take it very seriously on calle de ocho and surrounding barrios. it was moist in an undipped al's sort of way (i know just what you mean). whatever it is, for 5 bucks, it's well worth it, maybe even worthy of inclusion on the best lunches under $5 or best sandwich links here on lth.
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #4 - November 14th, 2006, 5:59 pm
    Post #4 - November 14th, 2006, 5:59 pm Post #4 - November 14th, 2006, 5:59 pm
    I've been here a few times over the last few weeks and will continue to go back. The Cuban sandwich isn't the best I've ever had (that honor goes to a sweet little place in NYC called Cuba on Thompson St.)--but the bread was nice and flaky and the ham/pork/pickle/cheese combo more than adequate.

    The ropa vieja was, indeed, good, though the night I had it, a little too stringy.

    The oxtail was outstanding--melting-tender and spiced just right.

    All of the sides I've tried--the guava empanada, the tostones de ajo, the croquettes--are excellent and, as mentioned a total bargain. The ajo dip/sauce that comes with the tostones burns with garlicky heat. The guava empanada, if eaten too quickly, is so fresh, it just burns. As in, scorch-your-pie-hole. I do this often, and should know better, but I'm always suckered by the siren call of crackling-hot, delicious food, and wind up burning the roof of my mouth into shreds of blistered flesh. So, consider yourself warned.
  • Post #5 - November 14th, 2006, 6:11 pm
    Post #5 - November 14th, 2006, 6:11 pm Post #5 - November 14th, 2006, 6:11 pm
    jazzfood wrote:i was walking down chicago ave with a friend today when i happend to approach a new place next to flo's called habana libre.

    Jazzfood,

    Sounds quite good, looking forward to trying Habana Libre.

    While I'm not a fan of Flo* there's a terrific Puerto Rican restaurant, Cafe Central**, right across the street.

    Enjoy,
    Gary

    * It's been quite a while since I've been to Flo, maybe I should give them another chance.
    **Which I'm betting you both know about and have been.
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #6 - November 14th, 2006, 6:18 pm
    Post #6 - November 14th, 2006, 6:18 pm Post #6 - November 14th, 2006, 6:18 pm
    Habana Libre is also discussed towards the end of this thread:

    http://www.lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.ph ... ight=cuban
  • Post #7 - November 15th, 2006, 10:29 am
    Post #7 - November 15th, 2006, 10:29 am Post #7 - November 15th, 2006, 10:29 am
    jazzfood wrote:mainly in s. fla is that lechon = suckling pig. the emigres take it very seriously on calle de ocho and surrounding barrios


    My experience (growing up with said "emigres" and married into one such family) is pretty broad, but quite different. Whole pigs are typically reserved for Xmas, quinceañeras, weddings, etc., with the day-to-day "lechon" based on a fresh ham (pernil), a la Unica. Ham's the best part anyway.

    But to the main point, thanks for the review. This newish place sounds worth checking out.

    In other Cuban cafe news, La Unica proudly displays its new LTH GNR right by the counter.
  • Post #8 - September 6th, 2007, 9:16 pm
    Post #8 - September 6th, 2007, 9:16 pm Post #8 - September 6th, 2007, 9:16 pm
    WOW! Chicagoland fried chicken lovers take heed- the fried chicken leg quarters drizzled in lemony, pungently garlicky olive oil at Habana Libre are the greatest revelation in fowl since the chicken boti at Khan's!
    Since its inception this restaurant has been my in the 'hood go-to for informal dates and meals with the parents. I've loved their delicate touch with fried appetizers, such as the empanadas and papas rellenas. The fried pork is something pretty special too- notice a trend of fried= me likes. Fish is pretty dang good too. But holy smokes, tonight, the pollo frito was exasperatingly crisp, oily rich, and tart, with that signature Cuban garlic bite. I haven't had Cuban this good since my last visit to El Siboney in Key West.
  • Post #9 - September 6th, 2007, 11:42 pm
    Post #9 - September 6th, 2007, 11:42 pm Post #9 - September 6th, 2007, 11:42 pm
    Jefe wrote:But holy smokes, tonight, the pollo frito was exasperatingly crisp, oily rich, and tart, with that signature Cuban garlic bite.

    Don't know about anyone else, but I'm sold.
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #10 - September 17th, 2007, 8:15 pm
    Post #10 - September 17th, 2007, 8:15 pm Post #10 - September 17th, 2007, 8:15 pm
    Thanks, Jefe, for the heads up. Without your rec, I might have never tried the pollo frito at Habana Libre (didn't seem all that interesting).

    The chicken was really good--paper thin skin, perfectly crisped. It reminded me of very well executed Korean fried chicken, but with the Cuban garlic and lemon thing going on.

    I am convinced that Habana Libre can do no wrong with a fryer.
  • Post #11 - September 17th, 2007, 8:59 pm
    Post #11 - September 17th, 2007, 8:59 pm Post #11 - September 17th, 2007, 8:59 pm
    G Wiv wrote:

    While I'm not a fan of Flo* there's a terrific Puerto Rican restaurant, Cafe Central**, right across the street.

    Enjoy,
    Gary

    * It's been quite a while since I've been to Flo, maybe I should give them another chance.
    **Which I'm betting you both know about and have been.



    With apologies for derailing this thread I was suprised to read that you are not a fan of FLO. The couple who own Flo are the son and daughter in law of the owners of the Shed Restaurant in Santa Fe, NM. My wife's family hails from Albequerque and they claim along with a lot of other native New Mexicans that I know, that the Shed has the best Red Chile in New Mexico. If you know anything about NM you will understand the signigance of this statement. I mention this fact for two reasons. 1) From reading your posts I have come to understand that you enjoy chiles of all types and 2) I have been assurered by the owner of Flo that the red chile comes from his brothers garden in santa fe, which is the same source for the red chile at the shed and he also has informed me that it is the same recipe. I have had the chile at both restaurants and while I believe the chile at the shed is hotter then at flo, i think the red chile at flo is the best new mexican style chile i have had outside of new mexico. My wife is a big red chile snob and she agrees. BTW, you can order the Shed's Red Chile off their web site. www.sfshed.com
  • Post #12 - September 17th, 2007, 9:59 pm
    Post #12 - September 17th, 2007, 9:59 pm Post #12 - September 17th, 2007, 9:59 pm
    Maybe there's something subtle going on with Flo that a norteno like me does not understand, but having lived in the 'hood of Flo for years, I've given up -- and that's after numerous visits and tries. Everything is off; muffins too dry, chicken too dry, undersalted this, bland that, at some point, the food has to taste good, and Flo fails in this regard with me.
  • Post #13 - December 1st, 2007, 9:46 am
    Post #13 - December 1st, 2007, 9:46 am Post #13 - December 1st, 2007, 9:46 am
    We went to Habana Libre last night for dinner (a Friday). At 8 pm there was no wait, but by 9 pm there was quite a crowd gathered in the entryway. When the door opens, there's no vestibule, so lots of cold air comes in (brrr!)

    The food was very good. I liked the empanadas appetizer, and the best dish was one of garlic shrimp. Lots of very tasty veggies and garlic over freshly sauteed shrimp. The roast pork was also very good.

    The garlic bread was tremendous!

    They do not take reservations for smaller groups, but you can call to get your name on a list if they are very busy.
    Leek

    SAVING ONE DOG may not change the world,
    but it CHANGES THE WORLD for that one dog.
    American Brittany Rescue always needs foster homes. Please think about helping that one dog. http://www.americanbrittanyrescue.org
  • Post #14 - January 31st, 2008, 9:51 am
    Post #14 - January 31st, 2008, 9:51 am Post #14 - January 31st, 2008, 9:51 am
    Jefe wrote:WOW! Chicagoland fried chicken lovers take heed- the fried chicken leg quarters drizzled in lemony, pungently garlicky olive oil at Habana Libre are the greatest revelation in fowl since the chicken boti at Khan's!

    Jefe,

    When I initially read the above I thought "here's a man with an appreciation for hyperbole" now I come to find out that, if anything, Jefe was understating. Habana Libre's Pollo Frito, garlic and lemon marinade penetrating deep into flesh, ungodly crisp, chin dripping juicy, bold eye popping flavor is spectacular!

    Pollo Frito
    Image

    Croquetas and Empanadas were crisp, tasty and, as Crrush mentions upthread, mouth searingly hot.

    Croquetas and Empanadas
    Image

    Classic Cuban Sandwich, certainly one of the better I've had in Chicago.

    Cuban Sandwich
    Image

    Ox Tails gave it up with just a fork nudge, light spice Creole sauce perfect foil to the rich meat.

    Rabo Encendido (Ox tail smothered in Cuban style Creole sauce)
    Image

    I was quite taken with Habana Libre, pleasant accommodating service, reasonable pricing, comfortable physical environment and a simple sounding, crisply complex tasting Pollo frito I will be back for soon.

    A few additional pictures may be found here

    Thanks for the heads up Jazzfood.

    Enjoy,
    Gary

    Habana Libre
    1440 W Chicago Ave
    Chicago, IL 60622
    312-243-3303
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #15 - January 31st, 2008, 10:10 am
    Post #15 - January 31st, 2008, 10:10 am Post #15 - January 31st, 2008, 10:10 am
    iblock9 wrote:With apologies for derailing this thread I was suprised to read that you are not a fan of FLO.

    iblock,

    I've been to Flo just twice, posted about my first experience here. Provenance aside, it seemed to me the potentially bold flavors are dumbed down to the perceived wants of the clientele. Flo is an ok place, very popular, but I put it in the same category as Wholly Frijoles, not quite mass market, but nothing really pops.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #16 - February 24th, 2008, 5:56 pm
    Post #16 - February 24th, 2008, 5:56 pm Post #16 - February 24th, 2008, 5:56 pm
    G Wiv wrote:....and a simple sounding, crisply complex tasting Pollo frito I will be back for soon.

    Habana Libre's Pollo Frito kicks chicken clucking a**, crisp, juicy, garlic/citrus, second time as good as the first, can't wait for a third.

    Pollo Frito
    Image

    Croquetas and Empanadas, in particular the guava and cheese empanada, are delicious, and Habana Libre has a way with plantains, both tostones and maduros.

    Tostones
    Image

    Snapper special was tasty, though I preferred the previously tried mojo marinated fried version to foil wrapped and steamed, and shrimp ceviche was a favorite of my brides.

    In two outings the only dish I would not order again was the paella, wet overcooked rice, bits of bone, krab, and no real distinctive flavor. Though, as JeffB might comment, the portion was huge. ;)

    Aside from one misstep in probably 15 different things tried, I'm a fan of Habana and will be back for the pollo frito soon.

    Efficient service with a smile and the fact it's BYOB is icing on the cake.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #17 - February 24th, 2008, 6:06 pm
    Post #17 - February 24th, 2008, 6:06 pm Post #17 - February 24th, 2008, 6:06 pm
    I should have posted earlier, but I was just there on Saturday and in the 6-7 visits I've made there, have nothing but praise for this place. Perhaps an LTH event in the future is in order . . .
  • Post #18 - February 24th, 2008, 6:11 pm
    Post #18 - February 24th, 2008, 6:11 pm Post #18 - February 24th, 2008, 6:11 pm
    aschie30 wrote:I should have posted earlier, but I was just there on Saturday and in the 6-7 visits I've made there, have nothing but praise for this place. Perhaps an LTH event in the future is in order . . .

    Aschie,

    A Habana Libre event sounds a terrific idea! I was there Saturday as well, around 9pm.

    What have you had at Habana Libre you particularly enjoy? I'm crazy about the pollo frito, as if you couldn't tell. :)

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #19 - February 24th, 2008, 6:19 pm
    Post #19 - February 24th, 2008, 6:19 pm Post #19 - February 24th, 2008, 6:19 pm
    They have some garlic shrimp thing that is SOOOOOO good...
    Leek

    SAVING ONE DOG may not change the world,
    but it CHANGES THE WORLD for that one dog.
    American Brittany Rescue always needs foster homes. Please think about helping that one dog. http://www.americanbrittanyrescue.org
  • Post #20 - February 24th, 2008, 6:21 pm
    Post #20 - February 24th, 2008, 6:21 pm Post #20 - February 24th, 2008, 6:21 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    aschie30 wrote:I should have posted earlier, but I was just there on Saturday and in the 6-7 visits I've made there, have nothing but praise for this place. Perhaps an LTH event in the future is in order . . .

    Aschie,

    A Habana Libre event sounds a terrific idea! I was there Saturday as well, around 9pm.

    What have you had at Habana Libre that you particularly enjoy? I'm crazy about the pollo frito, as if you couldn't tell. :)

    Enjoy,
    Gary


    I was there on Sat. around 2pm. The reason why I wasn't more specific is because my memory stinks in general and these visits have been over the course of at least a year. I know I've had the ropa vieja a few times, I've probably had almost every sandwich on the menu and probably almost every appetizer. (I really like the fried yucca and papa rellena.) I know I haven't had the pollo frito (I always remember fried chicken :) ) . . . and have been meaning to try it since it was originally talked about by Jefe . . . but having pollo frito at 2 pm just wasn't in the cards for me. But I've always thought that everything I've had there was carefully and lovingly prepared -- even the iced teas I've ordered have been fresh brewed, served carefully sweetened with a lime.
  • Post #21 - February 24th, 2008, 6:32 pm
    Post #21 - February 24th, 2008, 6:32 pm Post #21 - February 24th, 2008, 6:32 pm
    leek wrote:They have some garlic shrimp thing that is SOOOOOO good...

    Camarones al Ajillo, shrimp in garlic sauce.

    I have the carry out menu right in front of me. ;)
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #22 - February 25th, 2008, 6:51 am
    Post #22 - February 25th, 2008, 6:51 am Post #22 - February 25th, 2008, 6:51 am
    G Wiv wrote:I have the carry out menu right in front of me. ;)

    In perusing Habana Libre's menu I was shocked to see our Saturday night paella for 4 was $90, one of the worst value for dining dollar I've experience in quite a while. Inexpertly constructed with inexpensive ingredients, including Krab, what I'm guessing was Goya med grain rice as opposed to rice for paella and seasoned/tinted with annatto instead of saffron, not to mention tired mussels, scraps of sausage and bits of meatless bone scattered throughout.

    The portion was quite large, the waitress actually suggested we order the paella for 2 not 4, there were 6 of us at dinner, though at $50 the paella for 2 would have elicited exactly the same response.

    Overall I like Habana Libre, love the pollo frito, but in menu filled with tasty well priced offerings paella should be avoided.

    Paella - Please note we had paella for 4, this is but one, of two platters, of paella we were served
    Image

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #23 - February 25th, 2008, 12:09 pm
    Post #23 - February 25th, 2008, 12:09 pm Post #23 - February 25th, 2008, 12:09 pm
    I stick to an all-things-fried ordering cycle at HL. I typically begin with empanadas de camaron and an order of tostones and/or yucca for the table. Pollo frito is the star of the show, but the masa de puerco- deepfried chunks of succulent dark pork meat is also in rotation. The lechon I find somewhat disappointing- not bad in a tough or dried out sense, but I prefer a chunky Puerto Rican style to their thinly sliced version, which I suppose is the style of roast pork found on a Cuban sandwich. On rare occasions- usually in the warmer months, you can ask for the homemade hot sauce, which is pulverized jalapeno in oil, not unlike the amazing green chili paste they offer across the street at Cafe Central. This stuff will zip up pork dishes and the sandwiches quite nicely. The seafood preparations in mojo de ajo have been a consistently good order for pescatarian friends. Criolla preparations I have always found a bit dull- and not just here- but with a dollop of the jalapeno sauce will become vastly more exciting. With the right ordering habits, Habana Libre will consistently deliver a festive, affordable, and delicious time. When should we have an LTH event in the house?
  • Post #24 - February 25th, 2008, 12:19 pm
    Post #24 - February 25th, 2008, 12:19 pm Post #24 - February 25th, 2008, 12:19 pm
    Jefe wrote:When should we have an LTH event in the house?


    Jefe -

    As I was the one who originally suggested it, it seems like it should fairly fall on my shoulders to plan an event for a dinner at Habana Libre. (Now is as good a time as ever to plan my first event after some 1000+ posts here!) I will post something in the coming days for a dinner in the next few weeks on the Events board.
  • Post #25 - March 14th, 2008, 8:00 am
    Post #25 - March 14th, 2008, 8:00 am Post #25 - March 14th, 2008, 8:00 am
    I paid my first visit to Habana Libre yesterday and I want to join the fan club. Habana Libre is a great spot. In particular, the fried items seem to really shine, but our table's order of braised ox tails was excellent as well. Here's a little photo montage.

    Habana Libre Croquettas
    Image

    Habana Libre Empanadas (guava/cheese and beef)
    Image

    Interior Detail
    Image

    Habana Libre Braised Oxtails
    Image

    Habana Libre Pollo Frita
    Image

    For dessert, we had an order of coconut flan. This flan was very silky and cooked perfectly with no bubbles in the custard, a sure sign of proper cooking. This flan is now a member of the triumvirate of Great Chicago Flans along with Sol de Mexicoand Dorado. Dorado's flan is still my favorite for it's silky, over-the-top richness, but Habana Libre is a close second.

    Habana Libre Coconut Flan
    Image

    One thing is for sure, I'll be back to Habana Libre more than once to check out more items on the very comprehensive menu.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #26 - March 26th, 2008, 2:15 am
    Post #26 - March 26th, 2008, 2:15 am Post #26 - March 26th, 2008, 2:15 am
    Great time tonight at Habana Libre.

    The menu included:

    Image
    Appetizers - tostones, croquetas, fried yucca and papas rellenas. I especially liked the croquetas. The tostones I thought were a bit tough.

    Image
    Guava & Cheese Empanadas - I was afraid these might be too sweet, but the cheese balanced the fruit and made for a surprisingly tasty dish.

    Image
    Pollo Frito had an obvious garlic marinade, with crispy skin from frying with no breading or other coating.

    Image
    Camarones al Ajillo were also nicely garlicy, although personally I'd have preferred a tail-less shrimp to make it easier to eat.

    Image
    Ropa Vieja was as near-perfect as I can think of - certainly on a par with versions I've had on Calle Ocho in Miami.

    Image
    Black Bean Soup was nice, but unremarkable, bland - probably the least interesting item of the evening. I noticed many bowls were not touched after a spoonful or two.

    Image
    Rabo Encendido (Oxtail in Cuban-style creole sauce) was very rich, and very satisfying over the supplied rice after (easily) pulling it off the bone.

    Image
    Plantanos (maduros) were a simple side dish that complemented the rest of the meal.

    In that neighborhood, I'd been to Flo several times. Next time I think of Flo, I'll go two doors west to Habana Libre.
  • Post #27 - March 26th, 2008, 9:41 pm
    Post #27 - March 26th, 2008, 9:41 pm Post #27 - March 26th, 2008, 9:41 pm
    aschie30, thanks for planning this dinner! I really enjoyed HL a lot. As I was promised, they know how to fry things. The empanadas, yuca, and tostones were really great, and the fried chicken was excellent. I thought the ropa vieja was pretty good, even though that's a dish about which I usually don't get very excited.

    It was fun to meet some new folks as well as hobnob with familiar LTH faces. Talk also turned to the imminence of LTH Cocktail Hour season... so keep your eye out for that (or propose your own since I'm not inspired about any particular destinations at the moment...)
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #28 - March 29th, 2008, 1:22 pm
    Post #28 - March 29th, 2008, 1:22 pm Post #28 - March 29th, 2008, 1:22 pm
    Dang, gotta keep a closer eye on that calendar. Looks like a fun time, but GF and I went there last night and all comments are justified. We had the combo appetizer, the pollo frito, and the ropa vieja, with coconut flan for dessert. GF said that she had to try the fried chicken after Gary's "clucking" review. All dishes were outstanding, and we just had the leftover chicken in chilequiles for brunch at home. The lemon-garlic flavor is so well-balanced. The ropa vieja was very tasty and comforting as well.

    Staff was very nice, although initial order took a bit of time, since we got there about 9pm and the place was rockin'. They were playing great music, and a Cuban 6-top next to us (with their liter of rum and 2-liter of coke) were singing along with Celia Cruz, and even got up to dance for a bit.

    Since it's in our 'hood, it will become a regular spot in our BYOB circuit.
    - Mark

    Homer: Are you saying you're never going to eat any animal again? What about bacon? Ham? Pork chops?
    Lisa: Dad, those all come from the same animal.
    Homer: Heh heh heh. Ooh, yeah, right, Lisa. A wonderful, magical animal.
  • Post #29 - October 31st, 2008, 2:23 pm
    Post #29 - October 31st, 2008, 2:23 pm Post #29 - October 31st, 2008, 2:23 pm
    Mid-afternoon jibarito. Sub lechon for steak. Best round of lechon I've had there- succulent, crispy caramelized edges. Maybe I hit it at the right time of day, roasting all morning, little holding time, just perfect. Crisp plantains, unctuous grilled onions, house made jalapeno hot sauce. The sum of the parts= best jibarito ever!
  • Post #30 - February 22nd, 2009, 10:46 pm
    Post #30 - February 22nd, 2009, 10:46 pm Post #30 - February 22nd, 2009, 10:46 pm
    Part two of our progressive lunch.

    My Bride and I had plans to try the jibarito at Papa Cache Sabroso but they are closed on Sunday so we continue our drive towards downtown and caught this restaurant out of the corner of my eye. Lock on the binders, back up, pull a u-turn and find a parking spot just yards from the door.

    Image

    It was mid afternoon and the dinner staff wasn't in yet and there was only one waitress. We entered and walked back to a table and waited a few minutes for her to come out of the kitchen. There were perhaps 8 tables filled.

    She agreed as to our table choice and brought us menus and after a quick look we decided to supplement our jibarito with the appetizer item, Tamale Preparados.

    Image

    The tamale was great! Nice soft masa with the smooth corn flavor. The ham and cheese on top made it a perfect breakfast item. Brown it under the broiler and it would be perfect!

    Image

    Be sure to grab a taste of the raw onion along with each bite.

    The Jibarito!

    Image

    Wow! Delicious flavorful meat. Plantains with a light crunch and not too thick. The present but not overpowering Garlic Sauce. Be far the best we have had.

    Even the garlic bread that is place on every table was good. Just needed a dash of salt.

    Image

    As we sat there several dishes were brought out and they looked great and they smelled even better! We cannot wait to get back.

    GNR? You Betcha!

    (Even my cup of Cafe Cubano rocked. :) )
    "Make Lunch, Not War" ~ Anon

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