Sun-Wed, 11:30am-11pm; Thu-Sat, 11:30am-midnight
1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R, S, W at Times Sq.-42nd St.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
29th St. to 57th St., Second Ave. to Tenth Ave.
Occupying a stretch of 46th Street better known as Little Brazil, this cavernous restaurant serves up food from an entirely different Latin-American country: Cuba. Salsa and merengue (live five nights a week) fill the dining room, overhead fans spin from the soaring ceiling, and huge potted palms separate booths from a long, dark, wooden bar. Servers ferry pitchers of sangria and trays of mojitos—there are eight varieties, blackberry and passion fruit among them—to a mixed crowd of suits, extended families, and occasional Times Square tourists. The food isn’t as appealing as the setting, but it’s plentiful and true to its homeland. The signature sampler—fried plantains with mango-pineapple slaw, chunks of fried chorizo, and chili-powder-and-breadcrumb-dusted corn on the cob—is ideally followed up by tasty ropa vieja (shredded skirt steak braised with peppers, garlic, and onions). Also popular are pernil asado—mildly spiced slow-roasted pork served with Spanish rice and oniony frijoles negros—and the reliable Cuban sandwich.