Monday, February 28, 2011
Our host describes his favorite dishes.
During our trip up to Esteli, Claudio asked me what I wanted to eat for lunch. Turns out that the factories would be closed from noon until 1pm and we might as well go for lunch too. One possibility was the place that was featured with Andrew Zimmern offering iguana, snake, armadillo and other Bizarre Foods. Tempting but since Esteli has been essentially invaded over the years by Cuban immigrants, there had to be a place offering great Cuban cuisine. Cubanitos 20-09 has to be one of those places.
Since it's a Monday, a number of the other Cuban joints are closed, directing us to the door of Cubanitos 20-09. I have no idea what the "20-09" stands for but judging by the interior, maybe they opened in 2009. As we pull up, the owner is standing there, waiting to welcome us into his establishment. He's wearing jeans and a black t-shirt reminding you that Esteli is anything buy a place that takes itself too seriously.
Roasted Chicken Dip appetizer.
The food is simple, but delicious. We start off with a house complimentary appetizer of roasted chicken dip and some Townhouse-looking crackers. It's tasty but I hold off since I know the Masa Frito is coming and going to be a big dish. We were hoping for the Lechon Asado but they only roast the whole pigs on the weekends when they bring in large crowds looking for the ultimate in traditional pig.
Claudio's cuban sandwich looks killer and I'm tempted to think that maybe I ordered poorly, that is, until our plate filled with fried pork, yucca and rice arrives. The pork is perfectly seasoned and cooked. The plate is filling and I'm glad I'm sharing it instead of trying to finish it myself. I chose wisely.
Uh-Oh - more Gran Reserva...
A little salad.
Claudio, Nicaraguan Rancher.
Masa Frito - delicioso!