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Review: La Cubana, the retro diner on Roncey, serves sophisticated Cuban snacks

(Image: Gizelle Lau)

(Image: Gizelle Lau)

La Cubana 1 star
392 Roncesvalles Ave., 416-538-7500
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Even on a rainy night, there’s a queue to get into La Cubana, the new Caribbean restaurant from Corinna Mozo, chef-owner of Delux on Ossington. She modelled the seafoam green room on a diner her grandfather once ran in Cuba. Swivel lunch counter chairs overlook an open kitchen where cooks in ball caps fry conch fritters and shimmy to vintage jazz. Snack-sized plates are surprisingly sophisticated: a Cuban-style sweet egg bun barely contains its filling of guava-glazed beef short ribs and tangy pickled cabbage. Larger dishes include Georgian Bay whitefish (seared a minute too long) served with double-fried slices of plantain and a heap of rice and beans. Rum cocktails are nearly as sweet as a bowl of still-warm, sugar-dusted doughnuts.

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