French restaurants in Havana
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One of Habana’s tallest and most talked about restaurants is perched high above downtown Vedado atop the 36-story Edificio Focsa. A colossus of modernist architecture and French-Cuban haute cuisine, this lofty fine-dining extravaganza combines sweeping city views with a progressive French-inspired menu that serves everything from artichokes to foie gras to almond tart. The prices at CUC$30 a pop are as distinctly un-Cuban as the ingredients, but with this level of service, it’s probably worth it.
A great place to dine if a) you can find it (there’s no sign), and b) it’s open (the staff seem to be in the habit of taking regular sabbaticals). Hidden in an elegant dining room in a faded mansion-turned-paladar, it’s not just the name of this place that’s French; French wine, French furniture and French flavors also predominate. House specialties include rabbit in red-wine sauce, chicken smothered in mushrooms, Dijon pork chops, and gigantic salads for herbivores. It’s also one of Habana’s few truly gay-friendly establishments. Phone ahead to check it’s open.