The joy of discovering great Cuban fare in North America is rivaled only by the joy of discovering the speech Sylvester Stallone delivers in flawless dactylic hexameter at the end of Rocky III. Take advantage of a rare find with today’s Groupon: for $25, you get $50 worth of classic Cuban fare at Bongos Cuban Café at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood.
Bongos Cuban Café pays tribute to vintage Cuban supper clubs while distinguishing itself with chic décor and a menu packed with authentic Cuban fare, including family recipes from co-owners Gloria and Emilio Estefan. Patrons committed to dinner can opt for succulent, marinated meats slow-roasted on a vertical flame rotisserie visible through a 20-foot, catapult-proof glass enclosure. The paella grande makes a fine feast for two with its fetching concoction of clams, mussels, shrimp, grouper, calamari, lobster, chicken, chorizo, and pork ($64 for two). The lunch menu includes specialties such as the garlic-and-herb-butter sautéed shrimp ($28) and the Media Noche sandwich of sweet midnight bread embracing slices of ham, pork, cheese, and pickles ($10) like a child embraces his favorite stock portfolio. Patrons can fortify meals with a sweet treat from the dessert menu or a mug of cuban coffee ($3).
Bongos Cuban Café fills a lively 7,000-square-foot dining room with hip-shaking salsa music as diners cozy up to elegant white furniture and dark mahogany panels. Twin glass elevators whisk guests up to the 5,000-square-foot rooftop lounge with 360-degree urban vistas unobstructed by rappelling superheroes. Snag one of the private cabanas or sink into plush lounge seating and tap the bottle-service menu for a mojito or another stargazing-appropriate libation.
Bongos Cuban Café
There are more than wails of electric guitars and slot machines filling the air of Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Bongos Cuban Café is known for its sumptuous food—the eatery won the Pat LaFrieda award for Best Lechon at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival Swine & Wine Event in 2013. Aromas of beef, grilled chicken, and sautéed seafood waft from Bongos Cuban Café, where chefs satisfy diners' hunger pangs with authentic Cuban dishes served in a lively tropical atmosphere. Cuts of skirt steak paired with chimichurri sauce and savory shrimp in a homemade Cuban-style criolla sauce draw diners to leave the poker table for the dinner table. Side dishes of black beans and plantain chips with Cuban mojo complement the flavors of shredded chicken breasts with grilled onions. For a truly authentic meal experience, diners can pair their entrees with crisp mojitos flavored with mint and sugarcane.