Paladar Legal travel to Cuba
Legal travel to Cuba can be a bit confusing, but once you are there be sure to soak up as much sun, music, atmosphere and food as you can. Some may say that the food in Cuba is a bit bland might not be looking in the right spots. You can eat hotel food or at a restaurant, but I believe the best way to go is by dining at a paladar. A paladar is a private restaurant run by self-employers. They are usually family-run businesses and serve as an alternative to the state-run restaurants. On my last trip to Cuba, I had the opportunity to eat at a paladar near the hotel where I stayed. Paladars usually have a different atmosphere and feel more intimate with their location usually converted inside someone’s home and Cuban home style cooking. I felt like the family who ran this business put in a lot of effort to make their customers comfortable and made sure the food was tasty. These entrepreneurial families made the effort to go out and get the amenities to make this paladar top notch: from the comfortable cloth covered chairs to the framed art hanging on the walls to the effort to find and buy spices to make the meals pop with flavor; the food and personal service was much better than a restaurant. Some of these entrepreneurial families have relatives in Miami and they send back money or items to help the family business grow. On my second legal trip to Cuba I had anticipated eating hotel food quite often and not visiting paladars, so I bottled up some hot sauce in the 3 ounce travel bottles so that I could spice up my food. Previously paladars were only allowed to seat up to 12 people but now they can seat up to 50 people. Paladars are not allowed to serve lobster or shrimp because they are a state monopoly but most still do even though it is not listed on the menu; you just have to ask. There are quite a few paladars around town and many locals know where they are. Once your legal travel to Cuba is approved, I highly suggest you find a paladar and check it out.