Start the day with backpackers perusing their Moon guides at El Louvre (south side of the plaza, tel. 042/39-5639, daily 8 a.m.–midnight), serving omelets, sandwiches, and burgers.
The Restaurante La Arcada (daily noon–3 p.m. and 7 a.m.–10 p.m.), in the Hotel E Mascotte (Calle Máximo Gómez, tel. 042/39-5341), has spiced up its once-boring menu with beef carpaccio (CUC7) and such entrées as pork mignon with creole sauce (CUC8) and grilled fish with parsley, lemon, and butter sauce (CUC8.50).
A delightful rustic alternative is Restaurante El Curujey (tel. 042/39-5764, daily 10 a.m.–5 p.m.), at Finca La Cabaña, one kilometer east of town. Dishes include a fried banana stuffed with beef hash (CUC2) appetizer, and rabbit in red wine sauce (CUC19).
Beat the heat with ice cream at Cremería América (Jesús Crespo, esq. Andres del Río, no tel., daily 9 a.m.–9:45 p.m.), to the northwest side of the plaza.
© Christopher P. Baker from Moon Cuba, 5th Edition