Ropa Vieja, yes that means old clothes in Spanish, but in Cuba, it’s also one of the most typical and tasty dishes.
It contains meat so Vegetarians should try something else.
Ropa Vieja is made of shredded lamb, beef or, most likely, pork. The meat is cooked for a long time in a pan with a sauce of tomato, dry wine onions, green pepper, and garlic.
Well that’s the basics, in fact, everybody cooks it differently and you will not find two similar Ropa Viejas in Havana or anywhere else in Cuba.
There are places that serve the Ropa Vieja on bread, but usually it served with rice and beans and salad.
Here are some places that have the best Ropa Vieja in Havana:
Doña Eutimia is a place in the center of the Old Town in Havana, right by the Cathedral, that offers high-quality Cuban food and great service.
If you want to eat dinner there you should make a reservation. Doña Eutimia offers the best original Ropa Vieja, with traditional rice and exceptional black beans. The restaurant is nicely decorated and the waiters speak English.
Plaza de la Catedral, Callejón del Chorro
No.60C, Habana Vieja
Also located in the Old Town of Havana, but off the main streets, there is a place called El Chachullero. This place has great cocktails and a really nice and cool atmosphere. AND one of the best Ropa Viejas in Havana, they serve it with Arroz Morro (rice cooked together with black beans) and fried bananas. It goes great with a mojito or a freshly made lemonade.
Teniente Rey No. 457 bajos, Plaza el
Christo, Habana Vieja
Christo, Habana Vieja
Located in the Barrio Chino, former Chinatown of Havana, there is a Cafetería, which is famous among the locals in Havana. It serves Pizzas and amazing milkshakes, but also typical Cuban dishes like Ropa Vieja. In La Juliana, you can choose if you want Arroz Amarillo (made with corn) or Arroz Morro with it and you also get a lot of salad and fried sweet potato with it.
Esq. Zanja y San Nicolas , Centro Habana
There are a lot of other places that serve this dish in Havana, sometimes the best Ropa Vieja is served right around the corner in a small Cafería or is homemade by your host or friends and family.
You definitely should not leave Cuba without trying it.