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Guillermo Pernot

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This new import hits DC with vibrant, colorful decor and bright flavorful dishes to match.
By Katie Test

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The decor at Cuba Libre is reminiscent of the country that inspired its flavors

DC’s newest import, Cuba Libre, is loud, boisterous, and busy – patrons line up along the rum bar, and the dining room packs it in. The interior is designed to look like the colorful streets of Havana, and the food has the personality to match.

Chef Guillermo Pernot, known for his ceviches, has designed a menu of standout dishes, including my favorite dish, the black paella. Alongside the paella, the tres ceviche selection included a delightful organic salmon, orange and caviar ceviche that dazzled. For appetizers, the guacamole with pineapple-served with crispy plantain chips- should absolutely be part of your order. The Lechon Asado, pulled pork and rum-glazed pork belly, made for a tangy and savory main that mixed the familiar with the surprising.

As for desserts, I would say skip the sweets and keep drinking mojitos! The basil and beet mojito stood out as a creative craft cocktail- the restaurant serves up more than 10 different signature twists on the drink and over 75 premium and flavored varieties of rum.

Cuba Libre is located at 801A 9th Street (corner of H Street), NW in Washington, D.C. Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar will serve lunch weekdays, brunch on Saturdays and Sundays and dinner nightly.

Guillermo Pernot

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