Cuban / Old City

A Look at Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar’s New Dinner Menu

We had the opportunity to sample Cuba Libre Restaurant and Rum Bar’s new menu offerings recently. Already one of our favorite restaurants because of our love of Latin cuisine, we were excited to try the new dinner items by Chef-Partner Guillermo Pernot, inspired by his bi-annual culinary travels to Cuba. The menu overhaul also includes new hand-crafted cocktails, brunch dishes, and a build-your-own burger lunch option with Cuban-style milkshakes.

The Cuban restaurant’s new menu features several massive meat entrees for two, such as the Crispy Pork Pata, a 48-hour slow-cooked Berkshire pork shank, served with grilled seasonal vegetables and Moros y Cristianos, in a citrus pan reduction.

Crispy Pork Pata [Photo: David Johnson]

Notable dishes in the new “Latin Steaks and Chops” section include the Vacio Steak Argentino, grilled Argentine-cut bavette steak, with Moros y Cristianos and tostones, and Argentinean chimichurri. Wonderful and cooked perfectly.

Vacio Steak Argentino Cuba Libre

Vacio Steak Argentino [Photo: David Johnson]

The Puerco Cha Cha Cha, three pork favorites in one jumbo cut: a bone-in loin chop with meaty rib and crisp pork belly, with “boniato Bravas” and charred herb salsa, and chipotle allioli. Rich and scrumptious!

uerco Cha Cha Cha Cuba Libre

Puerco Cha Cha Cha [Photo: Marilyn Johnson]

A tropical seafood dish, the Pargo a la Plancha, has also been added – olive oil griddled Florida red snapper over coconut basmati rice and candied cashews, with mango salsa and red curry sauce. Delicioso!

Pargo a la Plancha Cuba Libre

Pargo a la Plancha Cuba Libre [Photo: Marilyn Johnson]

Authentic Cuban tapas like the Chicken Croquetas (Abuela’s creamy roasted chicken croquettes with Cachucha pepper allioli), Cuban Tamal (fresh corn masa filled with chicken, bell peppers, and Cachucha chiles and roasted corn sauce), Crab Guacamole (Blue crabmeat, avocado, grilled golden pineapple, roasted jalapeno, fresh lime juice, and extra virgin olive oil), Ceviche de Pescado (Hamachi-Yellowtail and grape tomatoes with Thai basil vinaigrette), Padrón Peppers (Spanish style blistered peppers with lemon mayonesa and sea salt), Albóndigas Cubanas (or Cuban meatballs), and Octopus a la Parrilla (grilled baby octopus, Smoked potato crema, and crispy garbanzo beans) are sure to impress as well.

Octopus a la Parrilla Cuba Libre

Octopus a la Parrilla [Photo: Marilyn Johnson]

Cuban Tapas Cuba Libre

Cuban Tapas: Albóndigas Cubanas (Cuban Meatballs), Cuban Tamal, and Chicken Croquetas [Photo: Marilyn Johnson]

Ceviche de Pescado

Ceviche de Pescado [Photo: David Johnson]

Crab Gaucamole Padron Peppers Cuba Libre

Padron Peppers and Crab Guacamole [Photo: Marilyn Johnson]

An effervescent new hand-crafted cocktail, the Second Street 75, made with Macchu Pisco, simple syrup, lemon juice and sparkling wine, makes for the perfect pairing for the new dinner menu. I’m noticing that Pisco is a trend in cocktails this year. Perhaps becoming a hot spirit! In any event, these are very easy to drink. You won’t just have one. You’ll have several… like we did. 😉

Second Street 75 Cuba Libre

Second Street 75 [Photo: Marilyn Johnson]

Of course my absolute favorite is the warm Cuban Bread with Mango butter. I could eat just this and be happy!

Warm Cuban Bread with Mango Butter

Warm Cuban Bread with Mango Butter [Photo: Marilyn Johnson]

No matter what you choose, you are going to LOVE the new menu. Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar in Philadelphia is always satisfying and the drinks are top-notch!

Be sure to tell them Philly Grub sent you.

*Special thanks to Marissa Sudol of GuestCounts Hospitality for arranging our visit. Our opinions are our own.

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